Benjamin Phelps

Lecturer, Music Theory


Composer and percussionist BEN PHELPS is an active arts entrepreneur in Los Angeles’s ever expanding cultural scene. He has collaborated and performed extensively with the What’s Next? Ensemble, the Definiens Project, the Los Angeles Percussion Quartet, and the pioneering multimedia based theater company Rogue Artists Ensemble.

In 2009, in conjunction with What’s Next?, he founded the Los Angeles Composers Project, the most comprehensive survey of local music from composers of all stages of their careers in Southern California.

Phelps' music has been performed by the likes of the Minnesota Orchestra, the Bass Clarinet Duo Sqwonk, and by percussion ensembles across the country. As a percussionist, he’s worked with such luminary living composers as Thomas Adés, Steve Reich, Michael Gordon, and John Adams. Steve Reich called his performance of Nagoya Marimbas at a concert honoring Reich's 70th birthday "the best I've ever seen- and I don't say that," and the Huffington Post has called him “a magician of the marimba.”