Fellow: Awarded 2021
Field of Study: Music Composition
Competition: US & Canada
A native of Houston, Texas, pianist/composer Helen Sung eschewed her classical upbringing after a jazz epiphany during undergraduate studies. She went on to graduate from the Thelonious Monk Institute (now Herbie Hancock Institute) of Jazz Performance at the New England Conservatory of Music. Her recent releases Sung With Words, a collaborative project with acclaimed poet Dana Gioia (funded by a Chamber Music America grant), and Anthem For A New Day topped the jazz charts. Helen has performed at major American festivals and venues including Newport, Monterey, Disney Hall, SFJAZZ, and Carnegie Hall. Internationally, her “NuGenerations" Project toured southern Africa as a U.S. State Department Jazz Ambassador, and recent engagements include debuts at the London Jazz Festival, Jazz at Lincoln Center Shanghai, and the Sydney International Women's Jazz Festival. She has worked with such luminaries as Clark Terry, Wayne Shorter, Ron Carter, Wynton Marsalis, MacArthur Fellow Regina Carter, and Grammy-winning artists including Terri Lyne Carrington, Cecile McLorin Salvant, and the Mingus Big Band. Helen is a Steinway Artist and has served on the jazz faculties at Berklee College of Music, the Juilliard School, and Columbia University, where she was also the inaugural jazz artist-in-residence at the Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute.
Photo Credit: Joseph Boggess Photography