John Corigliano is one of the most significant American composers of his generation. With two Grammy Awards and an Academy Award for his score to The Red Violin, he has enjoyed considerable success as a composer for the concert hall as well as for film. Corigliano's music most often builds his characteristic expressive melody into large-scale structures of compelling logic and transparency. His reputation as a conservative is inaccurate: attentive listening reveals a maverick imagination, an artist who has taken traditional notions like "symphony" or "concerto" and within them found a language all his own, drawn as much from his American forbearers as from the explorations of the post-war European avant-garde. "You must understand the importance of the past," says Corigliano, "but if you don't realize the importance of the present and the future, you don't nourish that - and our art form does not - then it's like a tree that grows no new shoots. Without new shoots the tree dies."