Short Bio

Warmth, expressiveness, communicating meaning, and bel-canto sound are at the focus of clarinetist Bogdan Scurtu. He appeared in concerts at Carnegie and Merkin Halls in New York City, as well as in France, the UK, Austria, Hungary, and Jordan. A founding member of the Aldon Ensemble, he premieres works of emerging composers in the New York area and has appeared with conductors such as David Stern, Jeff Milarsky, Arthur Weisberg, Kevin Noe, Baldur Bronniman, and George Manahan.

Passionate to empower young artists, Dr. Scurtu is currently on the faculty of the American University of the Middle East in Kuwait. He has previously taught clarinet at State University of Oradea (Romania), the Long Island Conservatory (NY), and as an adjunct and assistant, at Stony Brook University. He published a method on bel-canto clarinet in his native Romania, and is the author of several peer-reviewed articles focusing on immersive music in postmodernism. He presented his latest paper on the topic at the MAEK Conference at UMdK (Music University) in Vienna in 2017.

Bogdan’s compositions such as Doina (for clarinet and MAX/MSP), Air (for string trio), Homage a Rizea (for clarinet, string trio, and piano), and others, explore the combinations of heterophony with postmodern processes and interactive sound effects.

Dr. Scurtu graduated with a DMA in clarinet performance from Stony Brook University in 2013, where he studied with Daniel Gilbert and Alan Kay. He holds a Master’s in clarinet performance from the studio of Daniel Gilbert and a Master’s in Composition from the studio of Sheila Silver, both at Stony Brook University. He graduated Suma cum Laude at the Lynn University Music Conservatory in Boca Raton, Florida, where he studied with Paul Green.

Long Bio

The warmth and expressivity of the bel-canto sound enable the goals of clarinetist Bogdan Scurtu to connect to his audiences and offer them transformative experiences. His latest album “Tango della Pioggia” with a series of tangos, was released by Veritone Records in July 2023.

Bogdan is Assistant Professor at the American University of the Middle East in Kuwait, where he teaches World Music, Music Appreciation, Music Fundamentals as well as a few other courses. He directs both the student and employee’s music clubs at the university, where he nibbles in rock bands, jazz, and high art music. Before coming to Kuwait, Bogdan served as Lecturer in clarinet and computer music at the State University of Oradea, Romania, and before that, he taught clarinet lessons, Music Appreciation, and a few other courses as an adjunct at Stony Brook University. As previous faculty and director in the Long Island Conservatory (New York), Bogdan helped with the academic portion of the school’s accreditation process (efforts which were successful).

He appeared in concerts at Carnegie and Merkin Halls in New York City, as well as in smaller venues in France, the UK, Austria, Hungary, Romania, Jordan, and Kuwait. A founding member of the Aldon Ensemble, he premiered works of emerging composers in the New York area with the same enjoyment as performing works by Libby Larsen, Prokofiev, Mozart, Sheila Silver, or Stravinsky. As a freelance artist, he performed with orchestras such as the Palm Beach Opera, Florida Grand Opera, American Mozart Orchestra (NYC), Contemporary Chamber Players (Stony Brook, NY), the Argento Ensemble (NYC), with conductors such as David Stern, Jeff Milarsky, Arthur Weisberg, Kevin Noe, Baldur Bronniman, and George Manahan.

During his graduate studies, Bogdan took a nib at jazz, and performed in a few Indie rock (garage) bands in small venues across the New York City area: audiences were pleasantly surprised to discover how the clarinet fits in the genre. At the same time, he found a new love in ethnomusicology, and was a few credits shy of having another degree in that field.

Bogdan received his Doctorate and Master’s degree in clarinet performance at Stony Brook University in the studio of Daniel Gilbert and Alan Kay. He also has a Master’s in composition from Stony Brook University, in the studio of Sheila Silver.

Bogdan’s compositions such as Doina (for clarinet and MAX/MSP), Air (for string trio), Homage a Rizea (for clarinet, string trio, and piano), and others, explore the combinations of heterophony with postmodern processes and interactive sound effects.

His next project together with his colleague, Adriana Paler, from the Paler Scurtu Duo, is an immersive performance at the intersection of music, art installation, and literature, exploring the ideas of pursuit of happiness, meaning, personal growth, in a postmodern world. All the music featured in that project is newly commissioned. Stay tuned for dates and places.

Bogdan plays on a Custom Backun MoBa clarinet made of Cocobolo wood, which are referred to as the “Stradivarius of the clarinet world.” Bogdan hails from the bel-canto school of clarinet performance, a school started in the 1950s by the wind players of the Metropolitan Opera, who wanted to emulate the beauty of the bel-canto singing style of opera singers such as Fritz Wunderlich. Daily vocalizes improved projection, created a warm, dark, round beautiful sound, which is now effortless thanks to the MoBa clarinet produced by Morrie Backun, an independent manufacturer near Vancouver, Canada.

In his free time, Bogdan enjoys skiing, sous-vide cooking, the poetry of Pablo Neruda, and contemporary art. And while the Alps are great for skiing, nothing beats enjoying Vermont ski resorts with his favorite ovrride crew.

My Clarinet

Bogdan plays on a Custom Backun MoBa clarinet made of Cocobolo wood, which are referred to as the “Stradivarius of the clarinet world.” Bogdan hails from the bel-canto school of clarinet performance, a school started in the 1950s by the wind players of the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, who wanted to emulate the beauty of the bel-canto singing style of opera singers such as Fritz Wunderlich. Daily vocalizes improved projection, created a warm, dark, round beautiful sound, which is now effortless thanks to the MoBa clarinet produced by Morrie Backun, an independent manufacturer near Vancouver, Canada.

My Profile

Download Profile

PDF (1MB)