Roger Reynolds was born on 18 July 1934 in Detroit, Michigan. He was educated in music and science at the University of Michigan, when he co-founded the ONCE Festivals. His aesthetic outlook was jointly shaped by the American Experimental tradition and - through his teachers Ross Lee Finney and Roberto Gerhard - also by the Second Viennese School. Reynolds refuses categorization, responding to the variety of the contemporary world with a uniquely diversified output - music now increasingly concerned with myth, text and space-ranging from the purely instrumental and vocal to involvements with computers, video, dance and theater. His multicontinental career - in Europe, South America, Asia, and the Nordic countries, as well as the United States - centers on composing, but includes writing, lecturing, organizing musical events, and teaching. Reynolds has been honored by the prestigious Pulitzer Prize and the National Institute of Arts and Letters, and by commissions from the British Arts Council, Radio France, the BBC, the Suntory and Koussevitzky foundations, and the National Endowment for the Arts. He is a member of the faculty at the University of California, San Diego, where he was the founding director of the Center for Music Experiment (now CRCA). Writing in The New Yorker, Andrew Porter called him "at once an explorer and a visionary composer, whose works can lead listeners to follow him into new regions of emotion and imagination."
Reynolds' DVD of Watershed is the first classical music DVD specifically designed for surround-sound.
Reynolds' works are published exclusively by C. F. Peters Corporation, New York.