Stephen Downing is a composer, percussionist, and visual artist.
As a composer, Stephen is influenced by composers ranging from Louis Andriessen to John Coltrane to Alban Berg. Much of his musical output is inspired by science and mathematics, as well as a love of patterns and gradually-evolving textures. He frequently writes music for the Contemporary Music Group at the University of Tennessee Martin, a mixed-instrumentation chamber ensemble he founded in 2015. His piece Quantum Sheep for mezzo-soprano and flute recently was chosen to be performed at the University of Tennessee Contemporary Music Festival.
He is particularly interested in performing and championing contemporary solo and chamber repertoire from young composers. Some notable performances include the 2016 Percussive Arts Society International Convention (PASIC) as a member of the University of Tennessee at Martin Percussion Ensemble, the Tennessee Day of Percussion as a featured performer with Anders Åstrand, and many curated concerts of contemporary music in the West Tennessee area. He is currently pursuing a Bachelor's Degree in Music Performance at the University of Tennessee at Martin with Dr. Julie Hill and Dr. Shane Jones.
Stephen also enjoys photography and videography of classical and popular music. His photography has been featured in publications such as Percussive Notes, Rhythm! Scene, and Yamaha Musical Instruments. He has collaborated with X4 Percussion Quartet (Ji Hye Jung, Julie Hill, Joshua Smith, and Dan Piccolo), Hijinx Clarinet Quartet, and the Percussive Arts Society as a videographer.