Staern studied in his childhood cello, piano and percussion at the local music school in Malmö. During his studies in musicology at Lund University and before he felt that composition proved to be an interesting path to pursue. The following year he was accepted at the composition department at Musikhögskolan in Malmö during the years 1998 to 2005 with professors Rolf Martinsson, Hans Gefors, Kent Olofsson (electronic music), Björn-Tryggve Johansson (instrumentation and counterpoint), Per Mårtensson and Lars Sandberg. During his diploma studies his main professor was Luca Francesconi that was awarded Diploma of Fine Arts and Music at the latter mentioned academy.
Staern's music had been performed at music festivals for new music, as Ung Nordisk Musik, Stockholm New Music and Sirenfestivalen in Gothenburg. In August 2006, his work The Threat of War will be performed twice by the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra in Stockholm Concert Hall, conducted by Michael Christie
Staern has also received scholarship grants from Swedish Royal Musical Academy, Helge Ax: son Johnson, Annik och Lars Leander, Rosenborg/Gehrmans composition study scholarship and STIM.
New European Ensemble residency
On invitation from New European Ensemble's artistic director, Christian Karlsen, Benjamin Staern became the first composer-in-residence for The Netherlands-based group. He has up till now written two large works for them Tranströmersånger and the chamber symphony Bells and Waves. The residency is said to lead to 3-4 works. Bells and Waves was awarded - Most Significant Chamber Work of the Year - by the Swedish Music Publisher's Association in November 2011.
Selection of works
- The Threat of War (1999–2000, rev. 01) for symphony orchestra
- Muramaris (2000) for fifteen solo string instruments
- Colour wandering (2002) for ten brass musicians
- Yellow skies (2003) for alto flute
- Endast luft och brus (2004–05) for tuba and live electronics
- Sacrificio (2004–05) for tuba, live electronics and symphony orchestra
- Confrontation (2006) for trumpet solo and brass quintet
- Jubilate (2008) for symphony orchestra
- Tranströmersånger (Tranströmer Settings) (2009/10) for alto and ensemble
- Bells and Waves (2010) chamber symphony for large ensemble
- Worried Souls (2011) concerto for clarinet and symphony orchestra
- Godai (2012–13) concerto for orchestra
- Sånger av bländvit kärlek (Songs of Blindingly White Love) (poems from misc. collections by Karin Boye) (2013) for alto and orchestra.
- Saiyah (2013–14) for two soloists, large ensemble, electronics and stage art.
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