A composer, writer, and actor, Charlie Griffin was born and raised in New York. He currently lives in Orlando and teaches in Full Sail University’s Bachelor of Science in Music Production degree program. His original music has been performed in 20 countries in venues like Washington DC’s Kennedy Center, New York’s Merkin and Weill recital halls, the American Cathedral in Paris, festivals such as Aspen, SpoletoUSA, and Mexico’s International Cervantino, and conferences such as the WPPC (World Piano Pedagogy Conference), PASIC (Percussive Arts Society), ACDA (American Choral Directors Association) and NFA (National Flute Association). Recent commissions include works for the Orlando Philharmonic and for guitarist Robert Phillips.
Active in the Orlando area, he is the founder and first president of the Central Florida Composers Forum, and has been a large budget panelist for United Arts of Central Florida, a radio show host on WPRK 91.5fm, and the music columnist for Artborne Magazine. Griffin embraces creativity in many forms: improv comedy, standup comedy, and acting. In May of 2017, his one hour sketch-prov comedy show, Biblical Fan Fiction, enjoyed a 5-show run at the Orlando Fringe Festival. Shortly thereafter, he embarked on a second degree: a BFA in Creative Writing for Entertainment on faculty scholarship at Full Sail University.
From 2005-10 he relocated to Latvia from New York, where he worked on projects with his own 8-piece ensemble as well as commissions from regional sources, such as several works for the Riga-based women’s vocal ensemble Putni, a large work for organ, timpani and 30-voice choir to mark the 6th International Organ Music Festival in Liepaja, and a large work for electronics, flute quartet, dancers and video for a premiere in Riga in 2010, with premieres following in Sweden and Lithuania. He was also a lecturer for the US Embassies in Latvia and Lithuania during this period, and a co-administrator of New Music Incubator, an international collaborative project between composers and performers from Baltic and Scandinavian countries.
He has received grants from ASCAP, Meet the Composer’s Commissioning Music/USA, Queens Council on the Arts and New Dramatists, and commissions from Ethos Percussion Group, the Piedmont Choirs, and the Dale Warland Singers, among others. His work has been included on several Compact Discs and has regularly been aired on radio stations such as WNYC and WQXR in New York, WGBH in Boston and WHPK in Chicago.
His several residencies have included Faith Partners (an interfaith residency in New York City funded by the Wolfensohn Family Foundation involving Temple Emanu-el, St. Bartholomew’s Church and St. Ignatius-Loyola, where he composed four choral works for the three institutions), another choral residency at the Frank Sinatra High School for the Arts, and during the summers 2004 and 2006 at the International Festival for Young Latvian Musicians, in Ogre, Latvia.
As a freelance copyist, orchestrator or arranger, Griffin has worked on projects for Phillips Classics, Jessye Norman, Hugh Downs, Yo Yo Ma, and President Clinton’s Inauguration. He earned his B. A. in voice and composition and M. A. in composition from Queens College, City University of New York, and a Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota. He is a member of ASCAP, former Director of the New York Chapter of the American Composers Forum, and was on the board of directors of the Long Island Composers Alliance for several years. He has served on the adjunct faculties of Hofstra University, Columbia University’s Teacher’s College and Nassau Community College. He was elected into the Latvian Composer’s Union in 2006.