School of Music

Daniel Sonenberg

Associate Professor and Resident Composer


214A Corthell Hall

Contact Information

Phone: 207-780-5153

Daniel Sonenberg is a composer and performer. He is best known for his opera, The Summer King, about Negro League baseball legend Josh Gibson. The opera was premiered in concert format in a joint presentation by Portland Ovations and the University of Southern Maine at Portland’s Merrill Auditorium in May 2014, with the support of a National Endowments for the Arts grant.  It will received its staged world premiere by Pittsburgh Opera in 2017. Mr. Sonenberg presented an evening of new chamber music at USM in April 2015, including performances of Machine Shop (2015) for marimba and recorded electric guitar, Delve (2013) for flute, clarinet, violin, cello and piano, 41 Fathead (2012) for percussion and piano, 7 Jarring Dances for Clarinet(s) and Steel String Guitar (2011), Black’s the Life (2014) for piano trio, Grab That! (2012) for oboe, violin, cello and piano, and Takes One to Know One (2012) for bass clarinet, cello, double bass, and percussion. These works have also been performed at numerous venues throughout the Northeast, and will be featured on a forthcoming CD of Sonenberg’s chamber music. During the 2013-14 academic year, Mr. Sonenberg was the first USM professor to hold concurrently the Provost’s Research Fellowship and the Trustee Professorship. He has also been active in the field of popular music over the last several years. In 2014 he released a solo album of original songs, for which he performed every instrument, Peaks Island Ferry. His rock band, Lovers of Fiction, comprised of Sonenberg and three former students, released an EP, The Bear, in 2013 to local acclaim, and a full length album, Long Overdue, in December 2015. Sonenberg has been an active participant in the development of USM’s recording capabilities, and recorded and mixed all three of these projects at USM. 

Auditions for: Portland Youth Symphony Orchestras, Portland Youth Wind Ensemble, and Youth Choirs

USM Youth Ensembles

The USM Youth Ensembles invite young musicians and singers (ages 8-18) to audition for the following ensembles.

Portland Youth Symphony Orchestra
Portland Youth Wind Ensemble
Portland Youth Junior Orchestra
Portland Young Peoples String Consort
Southern Maine Youth Chorale
Southern Maine Children's Choir

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