Born in the United States and living in Vienna for many years, Nancy Van de Vate was known worldwide for her music in the large forms. She taught music composition at the Institute for European Studies in Vienna. Nancy was also a faculty member at eleven colleges and universities in the United States and at the Jakarta Conservatory (Yayasan Pendidikan Musik) in Indonesia. Her full-length opera, All Quiet on the Western Front (Im Western Nichts Neues) premiered in Osnabrück, Germany in 2003 and was performed there ten times to great critical acclaim. The same work was included in May 2003 by the New York City Opera in its VOX 2003: Showcasing American Opera series, again to critical acclaim.
Her 26 orchestral works include the well-known Chernobyl, which has been performed in Vienna, Hamburg, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, and in the United States at the Chautauqua Festival and by the Portland (Maine) Symphony Orchestra. A special performance on February 25, 2006 by the Yale Symphony Orchestra, Toshiyuki Shimada, conductor, marked the 20th anniversary of the world's most famous nuclear accident. Chernobyl has been widely broadcast worldwide since its first appearance on compact disc in 1987. Many of Van de Vate's recordings are available for streaming on You Tube.
The composer also created a large body of solo and chamber music for a wide variety of instruments and ensembles. Among her many chamber works are String Quartet No. 2, commissioned by the Vienna Mozart Year 2006, and Brass Quintet No. 2: Variations on the "Streets of Laredo," commissioned by the University of Mississippi for an October 2005 festival of her music. Journeys Through the Life and Music of Nancy Van de Vate, a complete biography and extensive analysis of her music, written by Laurdella Foulkes-Levy and Burt Levy, was published in 2004 by Scarecrow Press. She passed away July 29, 2023 at her home in Vienna. Nearly all of her works are published and administered by American Composers Alliance in New York City.
Nancy van de Vate, a native American who lived in Austria for decades, died in 2023 at the age of 92 in her home in Vienna. Van de Vate composed the music for the operas All quiet on the Western front based on the novel of the same name by Erich Maria Remarque, Hamlet after Shakespeare and Where The Cross Is Made after Eugene O'Neill. Van de Vate studied music composition, music theory and electronic music in the USA and taught at several international universities. In 1990 she founded her own label ‘Vienna Modern Masters’. In 1987 she wrote Chernobyl, a direct reaction to the nuclear catastrophe in 1986, one of her numerous orchestral works.