Solo Concerto and orchestra

Chicago Symphony Orchestra

Riccardo Muti, Zell Music Director

World Premiere planned for the 2018/19 Season.

Details to be announced!!

Commissions - Happenings


  • "Martha Uncaged" - concerto for trumpet and chamber ensemble. World Premiere at Music Academy of the West - the composer in residence and conducting. Paul Merkelo, soloist. July 11, 2017.
  • "Tributes" Violin concerto to receive West Coast premiere at the Cabrillo Festival. August 5, 2017. Jennifer Frautschi, soloist. Cristi Macelaru, conducting. The composer will be in residence that week.
  • Concerto for low brass section and orchestra with The Minnesota OrchestraOsmo Vänskä, conductor; Doug Wright, Kari Sundström, Andrew Chappell, Steven Campbell, soloists

Current Projects


    • Alto Saxophone concerto  A consortium led by Russell Kerns, to be premiered wit the Saratoga High School Band. Jason Shiuan, director. November 21, 2017.
    • there are no words - featured at WASBE International festival in Utrecht, the Netherlands. July 20, 2017.
    • Trumpet concerto #2 "Rextreme" to be recorded by Symphonic Winds Tokyo, directed by Yoshi Ito. Composer will be present.
    • Liquid Melancholy (clarinet concerto) - re-scored for classical orchestra. Performances/recording (Cedille Records) scheduled with the Lake Forest Symphony (May 20/21, 2017) and the Chicago College of Performing Arts (CCPA) at Roosevelt University; John Yeh, soloist Commissioned by the Lake Forest Symphony
    • The Storyteller - re-scored for solo trumpet and wind ensemble Commissioned for recording by the University of Michigan Wind Ensemble, Michael Haithcock, director 
    • Solo trumpet/piano work for Marc Reese, for the inaugural Roger Voisin Memorial trumpet competition.
    • Solo for trombone and loop station - Jeremy Wilson
    • Concert band works for Peter Haberman (Concordia College, Morehead), Craig Roselieb (Downers Grove South HS), Thomas Rohrer (W/NW CBDNA conference 2018 - Sonoma State),  David Alpar (USAF Band of the West), Rod Chesnutt (FGCU Wind Orchestra), Northbrook Middle School band, orchestra, chorus.
    • this is most certainly true - for wind ensemble - premiere: October, 2017 Commissioned by a consortium of 30 wind ensembles, led by James Ripley (Carthage College) - to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran faith
    • Luther: in Canon - for wind ensemble - premiere: November, 2017 Commissioned by a consortium of 30 wind ensembles, led by William Perrine (Concordia University Ann Arbor) - to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran faith
    • Concerto for low brass (section) and orchestra. The Minnesota Orchestra, conducted by Oslo Vanska. Soloists, trombone and tuba section. premiere date: June, 2018 Commissioned as a crowd-funded project, led by D. Wilson Ochoa - in memory of good friend Bill Zehfuss.

Recent Activities


  • Concerto for bass trombone and orchestra "The Arch" with St. Louis Symphony. David Robertson, conductor; Gerry Pagano, soloist.
  • Cantata based on "In Flanders Fields" (John McCrae) - for premiere performance in November to be conducted by Roï Azoulay at Congregation Shaar Hashomayim - also including wonderful friend/tenor Gideon Zelermyer.
  • Fanfare commissioned by the Montreal Symphony Orchestra (Spring 2017)

Schedule of Events


8-14: Performing at the St. Barts Music Festival
14-16: Composer residency at Gardner-Webb University, in North Carolina.
16-23 Eight performances of Compose Yourself! with Naples Philharmonic. (Stephenson conducting)


3: Symphony #2 - FGCU Wind Ensemble - Rod Chesnutt conducting
7-8: Piccolo Trumpet recording/performance at Peabody. Josh Ganger, trumpet
25: Blue Night *world premiere* with the Anderson Symphony. Richard Sowers conducts. In memoriam for Kent Leslie, former principal horn.
27 - March 2: Composer-in-Residence with Chattanooga Symphony; Violin Concerto "Tributes". Holly Mulcahy.


3: Liquid Melancholy clarinet concerto at Roosevelt University, CCPA. John Yeh, clarinet. Alastair Willis conducting.
7-10: Composer-in-Residence at Kennesaw State University. Performances of "there are no words", "Liquid Melancholy" clarinet concerto (John Warren), "The Devil's Tale", "Concertino and Fanfare"
9-11: American Bandmasters Association conference (Lexington, KY): "Glissin' Up" + "Symphony #2" (2nd mvmt) US "President's Own" Marine Band
10: WORLD PREMIERE - orchestra version of "there are no words" Frost Symphony Orchestra, U of Miami; Thomas Sleeper
11: Lake Forest Symphony - Jim Stephenson conducting family concert(s)
14: Piccolo trumpet concerto at Arkansas State University; Chris Wilson, trumpet


3-7 Elgin Symphony performs Compose Yourself! (Jim Stephenson narrating)
4: Three Bones Concerto at Indiana University; Jon Whitaker, Pete Ellefson, Tim Dugan.
6: Piccolo trumpet concerto performed/recorded at MTSU. Michael Arndt.
15: WORLD PREMIERE: work for trombone quartet and percussion quartet, Vanderbilt University
22-23: Recording of "Vast and Curious" at Fredonia University. Gail Williams, horn; Dan Perantoni, tuba. Wind ensemble conducted by Paula Holcomb. More info.
23: Piccolo trumpet concerto: FGCU winds. Matthew Sonneborn
28: “The Arch” Concerto Rhapsody, with the St. Louis Symphony. Gerry Pagano, bass trombone soloist. Conducted by David Robertson Composer in attendance. More info here.


Listen To Our Featured Works

music_sound       Violin Concerto "Tributes" w/ Jennifer Frautschi and Minnesota Orchestra Osmo Vanska, conductor music_sound Symphony #1 for Wind Ensemble as recorded by the USAF Band of Liberty Captain David Aplar, conductor music_sound       The Storyteller - in memorial: Bud Herseth Chris Martin, Barbara Butler, trumpets Sally Stephenson, violin; Rachael Kerr, piano

March 2017 Podcast by The Portfolio Composer

Listen To The Music On The Individual Offering Pages and Sound Cloud

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Recent Releases


Concerto Performer List

Over the years, Jim Stephenson has written concertos for an amazing group of musicians.

Here is a partial listing of the artists who have premiered Stephenson Concertos:

Violin concerto #1: Jennifer Frautschi Trumpet/piano concerto: Marc Reese/Lisa Leonard
Violin concerto #2: Alex Kerr Trombone concerto: Nitzan Haroz
Flute concerto: Bill Larsen “Tempest” trombone concerto: Joseph Alessi
Oboe concerto: Alex Klein Triple trombone concerto: Joe Alessi/Pete Ellefson/ Jon Whitaker
Clarinet concerto: Dan Gilbert, David Shifrin or John Yeh Bass trombone concerto: Matthew Guilford
Bassoon concerto: Norbert Nielubowski Tuba concerto: James Jenkins
Horn concerto: Gail Williams Brass quintet concerto: Jacob Cameron et al.
Trumpet concerto #1: Jeffrey Work Triple brass concerto: Charley Lea/Erich Peterson/Daniel Mattson
Trumpet concerto #2 (Rextreme): Rex Richardson
Trumpet Concerto #3: Ryan Anthony

Recent News and Upcoming Events

Exciting news to share at Stephenson Music. Thanks for having a look. (sorry for click-bait).
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Jim Stephenson's arrangement of Rob Deemer's little tune seems to have provided enjoyment, so we'll put it here as well:
Rob created a lovely melody recently - so Jim decided to add some harmony...
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Jim Stephenson's "Legend of Sleepy Hollow", as performed by the Lenoir-Rhyne University Wind Symphony.
Conducted by Daniel W. Kiser.
Thank you Tim Phillips, for the video.
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