Four-time Emmy award-winning composer Laura Karpman was raised on bebop and Beethoven, and trained at The Julliard School where she played jazz, scatted in bars and studied with Milton Babbitt. This highly distinguished and stunningly versatile artist, whose career spans the worlds of concert and theater, film, television, and videogame music, has become recognized for works that bring together music, image, and narrative. Her concert works have been commissioned by percussionist Evelyn Glennie, Los Angeles Opera, Tonya Pinkins, American Composers Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic, Juilliard Choral Union, among others, and performed by orchestras and ensembles internationally, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Cabrillo Music Festival and conductor Marin Alsop, Juilliard Chorus, and the Detroit, Richmond, Seattle, Tucson, San Jose Chamber, and Prague Symphonies. Her theater catalog includes three musicals for Los Angeles's A Noise Within theater company as well as underscore for dozens of classic plays. Among her extensive media music credits are Steven Spielberg's Emmy-winning 20-hour miniseries "Taken," PBS's acclaimed series "The Living Edens," for which she received nine Emmy nominations, plus numerous films, television programs and video games, including music for Halo 3 and her award-winning score for Everquest II. Karpman received an Annie Award nomination for "A Monkey's Tale," a short film commissioned by the Chinese Government, the score later received its US premiere by the Detroit Symphony.
Karpman's ground-breaking score for ASK YOUR MAMA, featuring Jessye Norman, The Roots, jazz vocalist de’Adre Aziza, mezzo-soprano Tracie Luck, and George Manahan conducting the Orchestra of St. Luke's, premiered to a sold-out house at Carneige Hall on March 16th and makes its West Coast premiere, with Nnenna Freelon joining the cast, at the Hollywood Bowl on August 30 and with the Baltimore Symphony in February of 2009. Karpman also looks forward to new works for Evelyn Glennie, Tonya Pinkins, with the Kitchen Sisters for the Cabrillo Festival, and the 110 Project, a newly commissioned work by the L.A. Opera that is a paean to the city's first freeway, the redoubtable I-110, which turns 70 in 2009.
Laura Karpman has received an Ives Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and several ASCAP Foundation and Meet the Composer Grants, residencies at Tanglewood, where she studied with John Harbison, and The MacDowell Colony. She was among the first composers selected as a Sundance Institute Film Scoring Fellow, where she worked with Dave Grusin. She attended the Aspen Music School and L' Ecole des Arts Americanes where she worked with Nadia Boulanger. She received her Bachelor of Music from the University of Michigan, where she studied with William Bolcom and Leslie Bassett and graduated Magna Cum Laude, and received both her Doctor and Master in Music Composition at The Juilliard School. She is currently on the faculty of the UCLA School of Film and Television and was recently a Guest Composer at the Juilliard School's Composition Forum.