Jerod Impichchaachaaha' Tate

Jerod Impichchaachaaha' Tate is a classical composer, citizen of the Chickasaw Nation in Oklahoma, and is dedicated to the development of American Indian classical composition. The Washington Post selected him as one of “22 for ’22: Composers and performers to watch this year” and raved that “Tate is rare as an American Indian composer of classical music. Rarer still is his ability to effectively infuse classical music with American Indian nationalism.” Tate is a 2022 Chickasaw Hall of Fame inductee, a 2022 Distinguished Alumni Award recipient from The Cleveland Institute of Music and was appointed 2021 Cultural Ambassador for the U. S. Department of State. 

During the 2023/24 season, new commissions will be performed at Carnegie Hall by American Composers Orchestra’ (Clans from Lowak Shoppala'), Lincoln Center by the New York Philharmonic (Pisachi) and Turtle Island String Quartet (Little Loksi), and CityMusic Cleveland (Kokumthena: Cloud Woman). Seattle Symphony performs Spirit Chief Names the Animal People and The Symphonia chamber orchestra performs Chokfi' among others. Among the highlights of his 2023/24 season, Tate will unveil new works commissioned by the Dover String Quartet, acclaimed violinist Irina Muresanu, and award-winning violist Melody McKiver, a member of the Obishikokaang Lac Seul First Nation. 

Other recent commissions include The Glimmer for Seattle ProMusica, Shell Shaker: A Chickasaw Opera for Mount Holyoke Symphony Orchestra, Ghost of the White Deer for Dallas Symphony Orchestra, and both Hózhó (Navajo Strong) and Ithánali (I Know) for White Snake Opera Company. Tate recently completed residencies with the University of Oklahoma School of Music, Seattle ProMusica and First Americans Museum where he directs and teaches the Native Maestro Composition Academy. He served as Guest Composer, conductor, and pianist for San Francisco Symphony’s Currents Program, Thunder Song: American Indian Musical Cultures, and was recently Guest Composer for Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Balcony Bar Program, Home with ETHEL and Friends, featuring his commissioned work Pisachi (Reveal) for string quartet. The San Francisco Classical Voice called his work “lusty and vivid, in an intense tonal idiom.”

Previously, Tate’s commissioned works have been performed by the National Symphony Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony and Chorus, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, South Dakota Symphony Orchestra, Colorado Ballet, Canterbury Voices, Dale Warland Singers, Santa Fe Desert Chorale and Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival. His music was also featured on the HBO series Westworld.

Tate has held Composer-in-Residence positions for Music Alive, a national residency program of the League of American Orchestras and New Music USA, First Americans Museum, the Joyce Foundation/American Composers Forum, Oklahoma City’s NewView Summer Academy, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation and Grand Canyon Music Festival Native American Composer Apprentice Project. Tate was the founding composition instructor for the Chickasaw Summer Arts Academy and has taught composition to American Indian high school students in Minneapolis, the Hopi, Navajo, and Lummi reservations and Native students in Toronto.

Tate is a three-time commissioned recipient from the American Composers Forum, a Chamber Music America’s Classical Commissioning Program recipient, a Cleveland Institute of Music Alumni Achievement Award recipient, a governor-appointed Creativity Ambassador for the State of Oklahoma and an Emmy Award-winner for his work on the Oklahoma Educational Television Authority documentary, The Science of Composing.

In addition to his work based upon his Chickasaw culture, Tate has worked with the music and language of multiple tribes, such as: Choctaw, Navajo, Cherokee, Ojibway, Creek, Pechanga, Comanche, Lakota, Hopi, Tlingit, Lenape, Tongva, Shawnee, Caddo, Ute, Aleut, Shoshone, Cree, Paiute, and Salish/Kootenai.

Among available recorded works are Iholba' (The Vision) for Solo Flute, Orchestra and Chorus and Tracing Mississippi, Concerto for Flute and Orchestra, recorded by the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, on the Grammy Award-winning label Azica Records. In 2021, Azica released Tate’s Lowak Shoppala' (Fire and Light) recorded by Nashville String Machine with the Chickasaw Nation Children’s Chorus and Dance Troupe; vocal soloists Stephen Clark, Chelsea Owen, Meghan Vera Starling; and narrators Lynne Moroney, Wes Studi, Richard Ray Whitman. Of the album, Sequenza21 wrote, “Tate has clearly taken the Western musical tradition and found a compelling voice that integrates his native culture.” His Metropolitan Museum of Art commission, Pisachi (Reveal), is featured on ETHEL String Quartet’s album Documerica. Azica Records recently released Tate’s inaugural composition, Winter Moons, and his MoonStrike, recorded by Apollo Chamber Players.

Tate earned his Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from Northwestern University, where he studied with Dr. Donald Isaak, and his Master of Music in Piano Performance and Composition from The Cleveland Institute of Music, where he studied with Elizabeth Pastor and Dr. Donald Erb. He has performed as First Keyboard on the Broadway national tours of Les Misérables and Miss Saigon and been a guest composer/pianist and accompanist for the Colorado Ballet, Hartford Ballet, and numerous ballet and dance companies.

Tate’s middle name, Impichchaachaaha', means “their high corncrib” and is his inherited traditional Chickasaw house name. A corncrib is a small hut used for the storage of corn and other vegetables. In traditional Chickasaw culture, the corncrib was built high off the ground on stilts to keep its contents safe from foraging animals


Jerod Tate's IHOLBA'
Tracey Gregg-Boothby, Guest Conductor

Join us for a special performance of Jerod Tate's IHOLBÁ accompanied by professional orchestra and brought to life by artistic projection. Under the direction and artistic vision of guest conductor, Dr. Tracey Gregg-Boothby, select choirs will have the opportunity to rehearse and perform at world-famous Carnegie Hall in New York City. For ensembles interested in solo time on stage, a Spotlight performance is also available. Ask us how! Optional packages are available to accommodate your transportation, sightseeing, and dining needs. This is sure to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for your singers!