Composer Kala Pierson

Kala Pierson (b. 1977) is an American composer and sound artist. Vivid and rhythmically free, her works have been performed by ensembles and soloists in 26 countries on six continents, widely commissioned, and published by Universal Edition. Her music’s “seductive textures and angular harmonies” (Washington Post) are “intricately structured, both mathematical and lyrical” (Dnevnik). She primarily sets texts of cultural and political significance by living writers, producing works of “marvelous political power” (Louis Andriessen). With deep interests in non-western cultures and musics, Kala has founded or co-founded many cross-cultural projects and collaborations. She has a special interest in lyrical settings of non-fiction prose, such as texts by Iraqi artist Esam Pasha and American journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal.

Kala won the SFCA New Voices Competition in 2008, and her work Esam Pasha, an audience favorite at our world premiere in June 2008, was programmed again in 2010.

Kala lives in Philadelphia with her two spouses and son. She greatly values listener comments and contact; visit, follow kalapierson on Twitter, or email her at

Visit Kala Pierson's web site