Having studied with some of the best teachers at Juilliard, Cornell University, and Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, Niccolo Athens is a highly-qualified music theory, sight singing, and ear training educator and composer.
Athens attended the Interlochen Center for the Arts, Eastern Music Festival, Boston University Tanglewood Institute, Aspen Music Festival, Staunton Music Festival, and American Conservatory at Fontainebleau. He received two BMI Student Composer awards in 2006 and 2009, and a Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2012. Other awards include first prize in the emerging composer category of the American Art Song Competition for Composers, and first prize in choral music from the Longfellow Chorus Competition for New Works. Ensembles that have performed his works include the Juilliard Orchestra, New Juilliard Ensemble, Momenta Quartet, Villiers Quartet, Olmos Ensemble, loadbang, Talea Ensemble, East Coast Contemporary Ensemble, Longfellow Chorus, Princeton Singers, Cornell University Glee Club and Chorale, Youth Orchestras of San Antonio, and San Antonio Symphony. In 2010, he received his BM in composition from Juilliard, where he studied with Samuel Adler.
Athens has a DMA from Cornell University, was awarded a Fulbright grant, and spent an academic year in residence at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. While in China, he undertook research on stylistic trends in contemporary Chinese concert music and continued his studies in composition with Ye Xiaogang. He currently teaches theory and composition at the Faceart Institute of Music in Shanghai. Athens was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas.