Hailed by The Guardian as “a cellist of power and grace” who possesses “mature artistry and willingness to go to the brink,” Seth Parker Woods has established a reputation as a versatile artist straddling several genres. In addition to solo performances, he has appeared with the Ictus Ensemble (Brussels, BE), Ensemble L’Arsenale (IT), zone Experimental (CH), Basel Sinfonietta (CH), New York City Ballet, Ensemble LPR, and Orchestra of St. Luke’s (US). A fierce advocate for contemporary arts, Woods has collaborated and worked with a wide range of artists ranging from the likes of Louis Andriessen, Elliott Carter, Heinz Holliger, G. F. Haas, Helmut Lachenmann, Klaus Lang, and Peter Eötvos to Peter Gabriel, Sting, Lou Reed, Dame Shirley Bassey, and Rachael Yamagata to such visual artists as Ron Athey, Vanessa Beecroft, Jack Early, Adam Pendleton, and Aldo Tambellini.
In the 2019-20 concert season, Woods will make debuts at EMPAC, Walt Disney Hall, the National Gallery in Washington, Moss Arts Center and the Spoleto Festival. This season of performances will also include premiere performances of concerti by Tyshawn Sorey with Thomas Dausgaard and the Seattle Symphony and the late Fausto Romitelli with John Kennedy and the Spoleto Festival Orchestra. Additionally, his performance installation, Iced Bodies, will receive international premieres at the Cluster Festival and the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival.
Holding a PhD from the University of Huddersfield, Woods studied with Thomas Demenga, Lucas Fels, Frederik Zlotkin, and Daniel Morganstern. In recent years he has appeared in concert at the Royal Albert Hall—BBC Proms, Snape Maltings Festival, the Ghent Festival, Musée d’art Moderne et Contemporain, Le Poisson Rouge and the Bohemian National Hall, Cafe OTO, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, Klang Festival-Durham, INTER/ actions Symposium, ICMC-SMS Conference (Athens, GR), NIME-London, Sound and Body Festival, Instalakcje Festival, Virginia Tech, La Salle College (Singapore), and FINDARS (Malaysia), among others. Recent awards include a DCASE artist grant, Earle Brown/ Morton Feldman Foundation Grant, McGill University-CIRMMT/IDMIL Visiting Researcher Residency, Centre Intermondes Artist Residency, Francis Chagrin Award, Concours [Re]connaissance-Premiere Prix, and the Paul Sacher Stiftung Research Scholarship.
His debut solo album, asinglewordisnotenough (Confront Recordings-London), has garnered great acclaim since its release in November 2016 and has been profiled in The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, LA Times, The Guardian, 5against4, I Care If You Listen, Musical America, Seattle Times, and Strings Magazine, amongst others.
Starting in Autumn 2019, Woods will join the performance faculty at the University of Chicago as a Lecturer/Artist in Residence for Cello and Chamber Music. He previously served on the music faculties of Dartmouth College and the Chicago Academy of the Arts. At present, he is the Artist-in-Residence with the Seattle Symphony and the interactive concert hall, Octave 9: Raisbeck Music Center.