Mark Growden is an American composer, multi-instrumentalist, singer, music educator, conductor, and visual artist. He is the founder and Artistic Director of The Calling All Choir, The Chromatic Community Music Center, SF SingFest, and The SF Jaw Harp Choir in San Francisco, CA. He was the founding Artistic Director of the Marigny Opera House in New Orleans and is the co-founder of the New Orleans Dance Festival. He is mentored by Vance George, Director Emeritus San Francisco Symphony Chorus; is an Alice Parker Composers Workshop Fellow; and has also studied with Michael Kaulkin, Joseph Stillwell, and Remy Charlip. He has released several critically acclaimed albums and has toured the US extensively. He has composed original musical scores for dozens of dance and theater companies and scored several films. 

Growden has devoted his life to making music for other people and to helping other people make music for themselves.


  • Winner of the California Choral Directors Association’s George Heussenstamm Choral Composition Contest for his piece Saguaro – Summer 2018
  • Best Chorus (The Calling All Choir) – Oakland Magazine, Spring 2015
  • Artist-in-residence – Paul Dresher Ensemble/ARC, Oakland, CA, 2014
  • Artist-in-residence – Chalk Hill, CA, Summer 2013
  • Composer-in-residence – Herekeke, New Mexico, January 2011.
  • Stash Dauber’s “2010 Rekkid of the Year” for Growden’s album “Saint Judas” – 2010
  • Arts DEVO Award for Best Live Music Performance – 2009
  • SF Weekly Music Awards nominee for Best Americana/Roots performer – 2003
  • SF Weekly Music Awards nominee for Best Americana/Roots performer – 2002
  • Isadora Duncan Award – Best Original Music for a New Dance Piece for work in performing the score for Alonzo King’s Sacred Text – 1997
  • Two “Best Song” awards from the Northern California Songwriter’s Association – 1995


…a little cabaret, a bit New Orleans brass, a pinch Appalachian folk with a spicy edge,… but hard to pin down, stirred with the gentleness of trees whispering on an easy summer day.