Dr. Ben Yarmolinsky is a classically-trained composer with many musical interests. He writes in a wide variety of styles and genres, including opera, musical theater, choral, chamber and orchestral music. He is known for his interest in revitalizing the American musical theater tradition by combining contemporary language with classical musical forms.
He has composed many operas and musical theater works, including Clarence & Anita, based on the confirmation hearings of Judge Clarence Thomas, a sung television news broadcast (Blind Witness News) and a late-night talk show (The Lenny Paschen Show). He has an ongoing interest in the setting of political language. His "The Constitution: a secular oratorio" sets large portions of the U.S. Constitution. He is the author of Clarence & Anita, an opera based on the Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings. In addition to his theater music, he has also composed many songs on poems by poets from Ashbery to Zukofsky.
As a guitarist, he has recorded three Cds of his original compositions for solo guitar. He has also composed a guitar concerto and works for guitar and other instruments.
He is a founding member of Friends & Enemies of New Music and his music is often performed in New York and elsewhere in the world. The New York Times has called his music “wildly eclectic.” In addition to his academic degrees, Dr. Yarmolinsky had two years of private study with Nadia Boulanger.