Franklin Cox

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Franklin Cox (born Charleston, Illinois, United States, 1961) is an American composer and cellist. He composes music in the school of New Complexity and his performances range from new music to classical chamber works.


Cox studied with Brian Ferneyhough at the University of California, San Diego, and at the Darmstädter Ferienkurse (Pace 1995, 37).

He is currently an Assistant Professor at Wright State University, heading Music Theory classes and the cello studio in the School of Music. His ongoing concert series, The New Cello, features his work in addition to other composers that explore new possibilities on the instrument through extended techniques and microtonality.


  • Di-remption, for solo percussionist
  • Four Pieces for double bass
  • If on a Winter’s Night ..., for solo clarinet
  • Clairvoyance, for violin solo
  • Clairvoyance, transcribed for cello solo
  • Recoil, for cello soloå
  • viz., for chamber ensemble
  • Chronopolis (1996), for solo flute

Notable performances[edit]

The New Cello Concert tour, Germany June, 2005 —Twelve presentations of solo cello recital, The New Cello, throughout Germany

The Courier's Tragedy Pynchon Cycle March 6, 2005 Berliner Festspiel, Germany —World première of C.-S. Mahnkopf's The Courier's Tragedy as part of evening-length cycle based on the works of Thomas Pynchon.

Unknown Skills Nov. 22, 2004 —Invited soloist: world première of work for cello and tape by Ignacio Baca-Lobera at bludenzer tage

Faculty Concert Series, UMBC April 18, 2004 —World première of Erik Ulman's Deuxième Extase and Maryland premières of works by Stuart Smith and Christopher Burns. Première presentation of Bach's G major Cello Suite in extended just intonation

Stanford Concert Series Feb. 1, 2004 Stanford, California —World première of works by Christopher Burns and Justin Yang

2003 ars (in)humana? festival Nov. 22, 2003 Atelier Neue Musik, Bremen, Germany —Presentation of two solo works (Mahnkopf, Cox) and one chamber work for opening concert of ars(in)humana? international conference.

Schloss Wiepersdorf performance series Aug. 7, 2003 Wiepersdorf, Germany —Invited concert of works by Franklin Cox and world première of work by Stuart Smith as part of stipendium-residence award.

Faculty Concert Series March 1, 2003 UMBC —World premières of The Courier's Tragedy, by Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf and Transparent Wave V by Tom DeLio. Première presentation of Bach's D minor Cello Suite in extended just intonation.

The New Cello: Raum-Zeit Jan. 2002 Böblingen, Germany

2001 Concert Tour: Feb.-March 2001 University of Maryland, College Park University of Maryland, Baltimore County Salisbury State Clark University New England Conservatory Frankfürter Musikhochschule

Klangraum (yearly festival) Jan. 2001 Stuttgart, Germany

unerhörte musik April 2000 Berlin, Germany —Featured composer/performer.

Echo Raum April 2000 Vienna, Austria —Featured composer/performer

pol (yearly festival) March 2000 Frankfurt, Germany

1999 bludenzer tage Nov. 1999 Bludenz, Austria —Featured composer/performer; performed Ferneyhough's Time and Motion Study II and other works.

Stichting Logos April 1999 Ghent, Belgium

1998 bludenzer tage Nov. 1998 Bludenz, Austria

1998 Züricher Tage Nov. 1998 Zürich, Switzerland

University of Maryland, Baltimore County Nov. 1998

State Univ. of New York at Buffalo Nov. 1998

University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana Feb. 1998


  • New Music Series Volume 4. Neuma Records 450-102 (2002). Includes Shift, for five cellos, performed by Frank Cox.
  • Surplus Live auf Solitude. Stuttgart: Edition Solitude, ACD 6024-3. Includes R, performed by Surplus, dir. James Avery.
  • Pierre-Yves Artaud, flauto. Milan: Rusty Classica, RUS 555019.2. Includes Chronopolis, performed by Pierre-Yves Artaud.


  • Group For Contemporary Music
  • Exposé
  • Surplus
  • Kammerensemble Neue Musik Berlin
  • Ensemble Köln
  • Extended Vocal Resources Ensemble (founding member)
  • C-squared (founding member)

Literary works[edit]

Co-editor of book series: New Music and Aesthetics in the 21st Century, Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf, Franklin Cox, Wolfram Schurig, co-editors. Hofheim: Wolke Verlag:


  • "The Construction of Doubles"

bludenzer tage, Bludenz, Austria (Nov. 2004)

  • "Between Primal Self-Assertion and Monadic Indifference"

2004 conference, Was heißt (heute noch) "kritisches (Sept. 2004) Komponieren"? Schloss Solitude, "Toward an Intelligent Corporality: the Virtual Body"

  • 2003 ars (in)humana? festival (Nov. 2003)

Atelier Neue Musik, Bremen, Germany —International conference sponsored by the Hochschule für Künste, Hamburg

  • "The Construction of Di-remption"

bludenzer tage (Nov. 2002)

  • "The Perils of Progressivist Historicism"

2002 conference, The Fundamental Principles of (Sept. 2002) Present-Day Composition, Schloss Solitude, Stuttgart, Germany

  • "Contemporary Rhythmic Structures," ca. 25 presentations, including:

1995 West Coast Theory Conference (April 1995) Official lecture series of the 1992 Darmstadt Festival (July 1992) Darmstadt, Germany Inaugural Lecture of the Arts Exchange (Oct. 1991) Lecture Series, CRCE, La Jolla, CA

  • "The New Cello," over 50 presentations, including:

Official lecture series of the 1994 Darmstadt Festival (Aug. 1994) Darmstadt, Germany " 'Advanced' Music in America" (April 1993) Darmstadt Revisited Colloquium, CRCA, La Jolla, California

  • "Rhythmic Construction" (July 1990)

1990 Darmstadt Festival, Darmstadt, Germany


  • "Helmut Lachenmann als romantischer Hochmodernist". In auf (-) und zuhören, edited by Hans-Peter Jahn,[page needed]. Hofheim: Wolke Verlag, 2005.
  • "Musical Progress? New Music and the Perils of Progressivist Historicism". In The Foundations of Contemporary Composing, edited by Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf, Frank Cox, and Wolfram Schurig. Hofheim: Wolke Verlag, 2004.
  • "Rhythmic Morphology and Temporal Experience: Doubles, for Piano and Taped Synthesizers". In Musical Morphology, edited by Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf, Frank Cox, and Wolfram Schurig,[page needed]. Hofheim: Wolke Verlag, 2004.
  • Frank Cox, Steven Takasugi, Erik Ulman, "Zum Andenken Mark Osborns," Musik & Ästhetik (Jan. 2003):[page needed]
  • "Musical Progress? New Music and the Perils of Progressivist Historicism," trans. into Italian, "Il progresso musicale? La musica nova e i pericoli dello storicismo progressivista," Musica/realtà ( July 2003):[page needed]
  • "Toward an Intelligent Corporality: The Virtual Body". In Ars (in)humana?, edited by Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf and Younghi Pagh-Paan,[page needed]. Bremen: Einwurf, 2003.
  • "Notes Toward a Performance Practice for Complex Music". In Polyphony & Complexity, edited by Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf, Frank Cox, and Wolfram Schurig,[page needed]. Hofheim: Wolke Verlag, 2002.
  • "'Virtual' Polyphony: Clairvoyance, for solo violin," Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf, Frank Cox, Wolfram Schurig, eds., Polyphony & Complexity (Hofheim: Wolke Verlag, 2002)
  • "Über John Cage". In Mythos Cage, edited by Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf,[page needed]. Hofheim: Wolke Verlag, 1999.
  • "Music and the Sacred," contribution to program book for 2001 Hannover Tage.
  • "Elliott Carter's Elegy and Figment," contribution to program book for 2001 Lucerne Festival.
  • "Elliott Carter‘s String Quartets, performed by the Arditti Quartet," Musik & Ästhetik ( Jan. 2000):[page needed]
  • "Towards a Projective Music," Musik & Ästhetik (Dec. 1999):[page needed]
  • "Elliott Carter´s Figment". Musik & Ästhetik (Dec. 1998):[page needed]
  • "Der Zustand der neuen Musik," booklet for the series Neue Musik im Buecherturm, Offenbach, Germany, 1997.


  • Pace, Ian. 1995. "Frank Cox and Brian Ferneyhough". Tempo, new series, no. 194 (Italian Issue) (October): 37–38.
  • Tagasugi, Steven Kazuo, and Erik Ulman. 1998. "Frank Cox' Spuren", translated by Christiane Tewinkel. Musik & Ästhetik 2, no. 7 (July): 53–68.