B i o g r a p h y
Sherry Woods, a member of the South Carolina Philharmonic, is well known as a performer, composer, and educator. Woods earned the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in viola performance at USC in 1991 and continued her studies for a doctorate in composition completed in December of 1997. She maintains a private violin/viola studio and was named Studio Teacher of the Year in 2007 by the South Carolina chapter of the American Strings Teacher Association. She has taught at both Francis Marion University and the University of South Carolina, and she and husband Benjamin Woods were chosen several terms as solo artists for the South Carolina Arts Commission’s Community Tour Program. As a composer Sherry Woods’ music has been described as “beautiful and riveting” (Charleston Post) and her string quartet Chambers written for the Ciompi quartet was called “a winner” that “swarmed with shimmering color and buzzing rhythms, fluttering and flitting in a busy rush” (Classical Voice of North Carolina). Woods’ music has been performed internationally with performances in Thailand, Taiwan, and Kiev and also in the United States with performances from California to New York. Her music ranges from the intimacy of chamber music to symphonic and choral music. Eclectic in style, Woods has been the winner of numerous awards including the first prize Miriam Gideon award and the first prize Theodore Front award in the New Music Search by the International Alliance of Women in Music. Her most recent work, Māra A Chamber Opera with libretto written by Stephen Batchelor, was performed in concert version at the Rubin Museum in New York City in 2017. Scenes from the opera were presented in Santa Fe, New Mexico with a panel comprised of librettist Stephen Batchelor, stage director Ronn Smith, music director Benjamin Woods, and composer Sherry Woods on March 5, 2020. The Buddha’s Death, the final scene from Māra, A Chamber Opera, was performed at the Music by Women Festival at Mississippi University for Women on March 6, 2020.