Born in Brooklyn, New York, Anthony Gatto has developed a diverse body of music, often informed by literary and visual arts, exploring alternative narrative modes and structures. His cross-media works include the music and libretto for Wise Blood, after the novel Flannery O'Connor. Commissioned by the Walker Art Center, Wise Blood (2015) presents the shattered war veteran Hazel Motes preaching the Church Without Christ from the hood of his car. Also commissioned by the Walker Art Center, his opera The Making of Americans (2008), based on the novel by Gertrude Stein, presents Stein's spectacular, universalist language celebrating generations of American families. "Soon now there will be a history of every one whoever was or is or will be living." and "Every one whoever was or is or will be living sometime will be clearly realized by someone."
Anthony studied music privately with Ornette Coleman, and later completed a doctorate in composition at the Yale School of Music. He has received fellowships and awards from the Fulbright Scholar Program (Berlin), New York Foundation for the Arts, the Bush Foundation, McKnight Foundation, Jerome Foundation, Meet the Composer, Inc, an ASCAP Grant to Young Composers; residency fellowships at Yaddo, The Millay Colony for the Arts, Aaron Copland House, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Willapa Bay Artist-in-Residence program. He is an Associate Professor of Music at City University of New York.
Recent projects include music for A Chest of Drawers, a film written and directed by Maxwell Nalevansky, an Official Selection at international film festivals including the 21st Annual Boston Underground Film Festival, Boston, Massachusetts, (March 2019); What the Film Festival, Toronto, Canada (March 2019); Chattanooga Film Festival, Chattanooga, Tennessee (April 2019); 15th Fantaspoa - International Fantastic Film Festival, Porte Alegre, Brazil (May 2019), Brooklyn Film Festival (June 2019), Beyond Fest, Egyptian Theater, Los Angeles (2019).
klangfarbenmelodie (for Ornette), commissioned by Duo Montagnard, premiered at Beckwith Hall, University of North Carolina at Wilmington, 1/16/2019; other performances include Organ Hall, University of North Carolina at Greensboro,1/18/2019; Bezanson Hall, University of Massachusetts at Amherst, 2/13/2019; 6/21/2019 at the Tenri Cultural Institute, NY, 7/2/19 Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, Mendoza, Argentina, 7/5/19 Mar Del Plata, Argentina.10/18/19 Eastern Connecticut State University, Willimantic, CT10/20/19 Conservatoire de Bordeaux, France, 10/22/19 Utrechts Conservatorium, Utrecht, Netherlands October, 10/24/19 Artez Conservatorium, Zwolle, Netherlands 10/255/19 Koninklijk Conservatorium, Antwerp, Belgium, 10/27/19 Posthoornkerk, Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Works-in-progress include Notes on Love and Surrender, for Mivos String Quartet, voices, and playback, featuring oratory and readings of American authors on freedom, civil rights, democracy, and the historically changing and conditional concept of beauty.