Dr. Stephen Weber is a composer/pianist and professor of music and interdisciplinary studies at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma. He has composed over 500 works in a variety of genres and styles, is a published composer of print music, a member of ASCAP, and has performed or presented research in Italy, Switzerland, Japan, Estonia, Greece, Poland and Hungary. He has recorded for record labels in Australia, Croatia, Canada and Sweden, and listeners in over 100 countries have heard his music via 30+ international streaming services.
How did you get started? (Education, etc..)
I started piano lessons when I was seven. I continued lessons through college. I completed three degrees: Bachelor of Music Education (Concordia University), Master of Art in Music, piano performance (State College of New Jersey), and Ph.D. in Fine Arts, composition/piano pedagogy (Texas Tech University).
Did you always want a career in the music industry?
Yes, I have broad interests and background in music, including teaching, composing, performing, recording, sound design and production. As a musician/educator/composer with a strong interdisciplinary pedigree, I’ve always been fascinated with the interdisciplinary nature of film, which marries multiple disciplines.
What is your role in the music industry?
My primary job is as professor of music at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma (USAO), where I teach a variety of courses in music and interdisciplinary studies. However, my side “hobby” is as an independent artist. I do all aspects of this: composing, recording, mixing, mastering, marketing, video and social media promotion, networking with independent artists across the globe in my field, etc.
Most Recent Successes / Placements / Accomplishments / Projects? Career highlight?
Most recently, a composition/performance of mine, “Evenfall,” was added to Spotify’s prestigious editorial Peaceful Piano playlist, which has over 6.5 million followers. Since then, my listenership has grown to 96,000 listeners and 157,00 streams within a week. I’ve composed over 500 works in a variety of genres and media: neoclassical, minimal, electronic, cinematic, sacred music, orchestral, ambient and others. I’ve been fortunate to hold an endowed position at USAO, which has allowed me to pursue research and performance opportunities. To that end, I’ve performed or presented research at conferences in Tokyo, Kobe, Budapest, Athens, Tallinn (Estonia), Rome, Florence, Lublin (Poland) and Merishause (Switzerland) as well as many states in the U.S. I don’t know that I’ve had a career highlight, but a concert I did in a 13th century church in Tallinn, Estonia, was quite memorable.
What is your favorite Oklahoma music venue, music store, or recording studio?
I enjoy attending events at the Civic Center.
Networking and connecting with others who share your dream or vision is a vital aspect to the music industry. Can you share which Oklahoma organizations (if any) have contributed to your success and are there Oklahoma organization you would recommend other connect with? To help further their craft or promotion?
I was selected as a recipient of the Oklahoma Musician of the Year award by the Oklahoma Federation of Music Clubs in 2004. That organization is a consortium of music clubs in communities in Oklahoma, sort of a grass roots approach for supporting music and musicians in communities. I was a board member of the Chickasha Area Arts Council for ten years. Again, these local organizations are tremendously important in supporting arts activities in the local communities. I was also a member of the Oklahoma Association of Schools of Music for 11 years, an organization involved in music education in state institutions of higher learning. I’ve only attended one Oklahoma Film + Music conference (pre-Covid), but I think this organization is incredibly important to the music industry in Oklahoma and will continue to become more significant to the state economy as well as a support network for individuals in Oklahoma pursuing careers in music and/or film.
How can we follow you? Best place to purchase and listen to your music (if applicable)?
Advice for someone interested in working in the music industry.
Be tenacious. Value people. Study and learn best practices to get your name out there.
What are some of the benefits of having a music career in Oklahoma?
As strange as it may sound, I find the natural beauty of Oklahoma to be an inspiration for my music compositions.
Favorite quote (if applicable)
“Where words fail, music speaks”. Victor Hugo
Each featured individual or business is given the provided questions to answer in their own voice. Other than formatting and grammar, the answers are personal to each featured voice, and are not provided by the Oklahoma Film + Music Office.