Steeped in the musical traditions of the Near East and trained in western concert music and jazz, Syrian-American Kareem Roustom is a musically bilingual composer who has collaborated with a wide variety of artists receiving numerous commissions to compose works for Kronos Quartet, Daniel Barenboim and the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and others.
Roustom has composed works for Daniel Barenboim, the Kronos Quartet, the Landmarks Orchestra (Boston), the Philadelphia Orchestra’s Educational Department, the Michigan Philharmonic, the Crossing Choir, Coro Allegro (Boston), the Boston Children’s Chorus, the Gammage Center at Arizona State University, the Hopkins Center at Dartmouth College, the Aplle Hill String Quartet, and others.
His music has been performed at the Grand Teton Music Festival Orchestra under Donald Runnicles, the Malmo Opera Orchestra (Sweden), the Pittsburgh Symphony, the Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra the Philadelphia Orchestra Chamber Music Series, the Boston Landmarks Orchestra, the Michigan Philharmonic, the Toledo Symphony Orchestra, Choir of the 21st Century (London), The Peninsula Women’s Chorus in collaboration with the Golden Gate Men’s Chorus, St. Catherine’s College Choir (Cambridge U.K.), Chamber Project St. Louis, BOHO Players (Belgium), Gateway Chamber Players (Tenessee), Alba Ensemble (France), Notes Inegales (U.K.), LSO St. Luke’s (U.K.), the Verbier Festival, the Braunschweig Music Festival, the Rheingau Musik Festival, and forthcoming performances at the Elbphilharmonie (Hamburg), Pierre Boulez Saal (Berlin), the Klara Festival (Brussels), Staats Theatre Kassel Orchestra in Kassel (Germany), and the Royal Academy of Music (London). Additionally, Roustom’s music has been performed in Argentina, China, Japan, Armenia, and in parts of the Near East.
Roustom’s work in film has been recognized by an Emmy-nomination and includes a number of award-winning narrative and documentary films that have competed at festivals that include Sundance, Cannes, Tribeca and many others. Roustom is the recipient of the Pete Carpenter Fellowship from BMI and is a Sundance Film Composers Lab Fellow.
Roustom has also written high-profile arrangements for pop artists Shakira, Beyoncé and Wyclef Jean.
Roustom is an oud player who has performed in the USA and Europe and has recorded for groups such as the Boston Camerata on the Warner Brothers Classics label. Roustom has been a resident/visiting composer at the College of William and Mary, Arizona State University, Curtis Institute of Music, Dartmouth College, Northern Illinois University, and the New England Conservatory of Music, among others.