Dr. Dennis K. Sullivan II is a percussionist, educator, performance artist, and composer based in Brooklyn NY.
Born in Akron, Ohio, Dr. Dennis K. Sullivan II is a percussionist, educator, performance artist, and composer based in Brooklyn NY.
As an artist, Sullivan puts forth a nonpareil product rooted in the intersection of music, theater, and analog electronics. It is his intent to create a product devoid of genre classification that will appeal to audiences of all levels.
As a percussionist focusing on new and contemporary music, Sullivan is a founding member of the percussion duo, Radical 2, a classification-defying duo that explores the use of theatric, vocal, percussive and prototype electronic mediums. He is as well very active as a solo artist in the US and Europe, commissioning new works for his unique hybrid of percussion, theater, and electronics as well as actively performing his own compositions.
As a composer, Sullivan’s work has been heard in the US, Germany, and the Netherlands. These unique percussion compositions, like most of his work, explore the inclusion of the human voice via narration, singing, and extended technique. Many of these works also explore the interaction between live performance and fixed media. In July of 2014, Sullivan spent two weeks in residence composing at the Steim electro acoustic music facility in Amsterdam.
Sullivan has also been heard around the globe (United States, Great Britain, Germany, Austria, The Netherlands) with the likes of Newband, John Eaton’s Pocket Opera Players, The Argento Ensemble, Ensemble Pamplemousse, Tactus, Iktus Percussion, The Lugano Percussion Group (Lugano Switzerland), the Darmstadt Preistrager forum, Ray Anderson’s Pocket Brass Band, Sequitur, Mantra Percussion, The Mettawee River Theater Company, The 7 Mile Isle Steel Drum Band, The Perceval Duo (co-founder), and The Cleveland Orchestra. Sullivan has worked with fine composers and conductors such as Michael Guillen, Lucas Vis, Wolfgang Rihm, Tristan Murail, Thomas Meadowcroft, Franck Ollu, Michael Gordon, Evan Ziporyn, David MacBride, Clint McCallum, Matthew Hough, Rick Burkhardt, Alexander Schubert, and John Eaton.
In 2004, Sullivan was awarded the grand prize at the Van Rooy Competition for Musical Excellence, and in 2008 he received the Stipiendienpreise at the Darmstadt International Ferienkurse fur Neue Musik (Darmstadt, Germany). His festival appearances have included Darmstadt (2006, 2008, 2010), NIME 2014 at Goldsmith’s University (featured soloist), The Klangspuren Festival (Ensemble Modern Academy 2007), ACA Festival of American Music (2007, 2010), Make Music New York (2009, 2011, 2012) and the Woodstock Fringe Festival (Perceval Duo, 2005). He has recorded for the New Amsterdam, Mode and Original Abstraction labels.
Sullivan’ teachers have included: Eduardo Leandro (percussion, conducting), Benjamin Toth (percussion), Dr. Larry Snider (percussion), Al Lepak, Timpanist-Hartford Symphony (timpani), Paul Yancich, Timpanist-Cleveland Orchestra (timpani), Glen Velez,, Recording Artist, Frame Drummer (South Indian Frame Drumming), Joe Galeota (West African Drumming), Ray Anderson (Jazz Studies), John Amira (Haitian and Cuban Drumming), Dave Samuels, Caribbean Jazz Project (improvisation)
Sullivan holds a Bachelor of Music (B.M.) from the Hartt School of Music. He also holds a Master of Music (M.M.) and Doctorate of Musical Arts (D.M.A.) from Stony Brook University. Sullivan currently serves as adjunct professor of percussion at Adelphi University and assistant director of music at St Anthony’s High School.
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