Bio

Artistic Statement

A classically trained saxophonist with a background in stage acting and an obsession with Electronic Dance Music, Michael Couper (Schrodinger's Sax) has found a perfect home in the electrifying cross-genre group SWARMIUS. A wearer of many hats, Dr. Couper is equally engaged as a performer, teacher, conductor, scholar, software engineer, and music publisher. Finding great difficulty in settling on a major in college, Couper became enthralled with interdisciplinary studies and the ways in which many contrasting points of view and subjects of study contribute to the greatest possible expression of one's own personality and musical artistry.  
 
His current projects include the development of a digital practice assistant that seek to transform the way private teachers interact with their students as they practice away from the studio, and grant access to rigorous study to those students who do not have access to private tutors. Seeking his path after having pushed straight through three music degrees, Dr. Couper became reinvigorated by the introduction to rave music and culture, finding in it and the capacity to reconnect with the fundamental musical underpinnings of communication and cognition, granting hope for the future of music as it relates to our increasingly digital culture.

Comprehensive Bio

Hailed by the New York Times for his “sweet intensity” and “insinuating smoothness,” Michael Couper is active in the advancement of the saxophone repertoire to include music of our time, traditional music reinterpreted, and innovations in pop styles. Dr. Couper was a finalist for the 2015 Concert Artists Guild Victor Elmaleh Competition, a rare distinction among saxophone soloists. He is also a founding member of the critically-acclaimed Mimesis Ensemble, a group based in New York City that is dedicated to presenting works of poignant cultural significance, largely by living composers. As a soloist and chamber musician, he has performed internationally at major venues including the Seoul Arts Center, Miller Theater, Merkin Hall, and Carnegie Hall, among others. Under the pseudonym “Shrodinger's Sax,” Couper plays soprano saxophone with the musically acrobatic and genre-defying band SWARMIUS, described as a “sonic fusion of hip-hop and house-lounge-techno meets modern-classical.” He has performed concerti with the USC Thornton Symphony, the San Diego State University (SDSU) Symphony Orchestra, the SDSU Wind Ensemble, and the Swarmaphonic Orchestra, and is engaged in several new concerto projects for the 2016/2017 season, including one with Mohammed Fairouz. Partnering with saxophonist Kenneth Radnofsky, Dr. Couper co-founded a music publishing company, RCEditions (www.rceditions.com) that endeavors to enrich the repertoire of the modern saxophonist, offering as part of its catalog adaptations of historical masterworks as well as exciting new commissions.

Dr. Couper plays with the San Diego Symphony, and has also performed with the Tanglewood Festival of Contemporary Music, the San Diego Opera, and the Vermont Symphony Orchestra, as well as several local orchestras in the Los Angeles area. He has given guest artist recitals and masterclasses at universities and conservatories around the country, including New England Conservatory, the Longy School of Music, Boston University, CSU Sacramento, and CSU Long Beach, among others. He is an active teacher and performer in the community, with recent faculty appointments at San Diego State University and CSU San Bernardino, and summer festivals including CSU Summer Arts, and the California State Summer School for the Arts. In November of 2011, he collaborated on a Grammy-nominated disc of chamber works on the Sono Luminous label, and has subsequently recorded with SWARMIUS and for the LA Operetta Foundation.

Dr. Couper earned his Doctorate of Musical Arts with distinction from the University of Southern California, his Master of Music from New England Conservatory, and his Bachelor of Music from San Diego State University, where he was the outstanding graduate for the School of Music, and the recipient of the Outstanding Alumni Award. His past teachers include Todd Rewoldt, Kenneth Radnofsky, James Rötter, and Douglas Masek for saxophone, Frank Ticheli, Malcolm Peyton, and Brent Dutton for composition, and Lucinda Carver and Larry Livingston for conducting. Dr. Couper is a Conn-Selmer Artist endorsing Yanagisawa saxophones.

Short Bio

Hailed by the New York Times for his “sweet intensity” and “insinuating smoothness,” modern saxophonist Michael Couper has performed internationally as a soloist and chamber musician at venues including the Seoul Arts Center, Symphony Space, Merkin Hall, and Carnegie Hall, and is engaged by the Mimesis Ensemble, the San Diego Symphony, and the San Diego Opera, among others. Under the pseudonym “Shrodinger’s Sax”, Dr. Couper plays soprano saxophone with the musically acrobatic and genre-defying band SWARMIUS, described as “a sonic fusion of hip-hop and house-lounge-techno meets modern-classical.” He co-founded a music publishing company, Radnofsky Couper Editions that endeavors to enrich the repertoire of the modern saxophonist, offering as part of its catalog adaptations of historical masterworks as well as exciting new commissions. Dr. Couper is currently visiting faculty at CSU San Bernardino, was recently visiting faculty at San Diego State University, and is a Conn-Selmer Artist endorsing Yanagisawa saxophones.

Media

Calendar

Upcoming

Solo and Chamber Performing

Mar 11

North American Saxophone Alliance Annual Conference

Texas Tech University. Lubbock, TX

Friday, March 11, 2016 : 4:00 PM

Feb 17

No Orpheus - World Premiere of Serenade (2016)

Le Poisson Rouge

Wednesday, February 17, 2016 : 7:30 PM

Ensemble Work

Apr 10

The Mimesis Ensemble presents: Al-Andalus

Skirball Center for the Performing Arts at NYU

Sunday, April 10, 2016 : 8:00 PM

Recent

Solo and Chamber Performing

Feb 5

Lotusflower and CSUSB Opera Theatre (Lilith with ChoEun Lee)

CSUSB San Bernardino Recital Hall

Friday, February 5, 2016 : 8:00 PM

Dec 9

SWARMIUS @ Composers Concordance

Manhattan, NY

Wednesday, December 9, 2015 : 8:00PM

Nov 17

Masterclass: Building an Eclectic Career

CSU San Bernardino

Tuesday, November 17, 2015 : 1:00PM

Oct 31

Lurking, Soaring

Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall

Saturday, October 31, 2015 : 2:00PM

Oct 28

Recital and Masterclass

New England Conservatory, Boston, MA

Wednesday, October 28, 2015 : 2:00PM

Oct 21

CAG Victor Elmaleh Competition Finals

Merkin Hall, NYC

Wednesday, October 21, 2015 : 2:15PM

Oct 13

Concert Artists Guild Victor Elmaleh Competition

New York City, NYC

Tuesday, October 13, 2015 :

Oct 4

Michael Couper and ChoEun Lee

Claremont UMC

Sunday, October 4, 2015 : 2:00 PM

Sep 25

Michael Couper and ChoEun Lee

Victor Valley College, Victorville, CA

Friday, September 25, 2015 : 7:30 PM

Sep 9

Michael Couper and ChoEun Lee

Smith Recital Hall, San Diego State University

Wednesday, September 9, 2015 : 12:00 PM

Aug 8

Michael Couper and ChoEun Lee

Mt. San Antonio Gardens, Claremont, CA

Saturday, August 8, 2015 : 7:00 PM

Jul 14

Faculty Recital, CSSSA

ROD, Cal Arts

Tuesday, July 14, 2015 : 6:00 PM

May 6

Faculty Recital, Michael Couper, saxophone

Smith Recital Hall, San Diego, CA

Wednesday, May 6, 2015 : 12:00 PM

Apr 20

Scott Grady - "Overdrive"

Los Angeles, CA

Monday, April 20, 2015 : 8:00 PM

Mar 22

Suite Noir, Concerto with San Diego State Symphony

San Diego State University

Sunday, March 22, 2015 : 7:00 PM

Feb 11

The Music of Richard Thompson

San Diego State University

Wednesday, February 11, 2015 : 12:00 Pm

Jan 9

SWARMIUS @ International Phage Conference

San Diego, CA

Friday, January 9, 2015 : 8:00 PM

Ensemble Work

Aug 28

San Diego Symphony: Cary Hoffman

Embarcadero Marina Park South, San Diego

Friday, August 28, 2015 : 8:00 PM

Jul 8

San Diego Winds

Balboa Theater, San Diego, CA

Wednesday, July 8, 2015 : 7:30 PM

May 2

La Curandera

CSU San Bernardino

Saturday, May 2, 2015 : 8:00 PM

May 1

La Curandera

CSU San Bernardino

Friday, May 1, 2015 : 8:00 PM

Mar 22

Nixon in China - San Diego Opera

San Diego, CA

Sunday, March 22, 2015 : 2:00 PM

Mar 20

Nixon in China - San Diego Opera

San Diego, CA

Friday, March 20, 2015 : 8:00 PM

Mar 17

Nixon in China - San Diego Opera

San Diego, CA

Tuesday, March 17, 2015 : 8:00 PM

Mar 14

Nixon in China - San Diego Opera

San Diego, CA

Saturday, March 14, 2015 : 8:00 PM

SWARMIUS

Nov 17

SWARMIUS @ CSUSB Music Tuesdays

CSU San Bernardino, CA

Tuesday, November 17, 2015 : 12:00PM

Aug 29

SWARMIUS @ Carlsbad New Music Festival

Carlsbad, CA

Saturday, August 29, 2015 : 4:30 PM

Jul 4

SWARMIUS @ Balboa Park

San Diego, CA

Saturday, July 4, 2015 : 1:00 PM

Jun 25

SWARMIUS @ NWEAMO Festival

Zoro Garden, Balboa Park, San Diego

Thursday, June 25, 2015 : 8:00 PM

Jun 19

SWARMIUS @ NWEAMO Festival

Helen Price Reading Room, Central Library, San Diego

Friday, June 19, 2015 : 8:00 PM

Apr 26

NWEAMO Festival

San Diego, CA

Sunday, April 26, 2015 : 8:00 PM

Apr 25

NWEAMO Festival

San Diego, CA

Saturday, April 25, 2015 : 8:00 PM

Mar 20

SWARMIUS @ Aztec Center

San Diego, CA

Friday, March 20, 2015 : 12:00 PM

Mar 13

SWARMIUS @ Love Library

San Diego, CA

Friday, March 13, 2015 : 12:00 PM

Conducting

Jan 24

Mohammed Fairouz: Pierrot Lunaire

Joe's Pub, NYC

Sunday, January 24, 2016 :

Nov 19

CSU San Bernardino Opera Scenes: Into the Woods

CSU San Bernardino, CA

Thursday, November 19, 2015 : 7:30PM

Contact