Born and educated in New York, Terry Winter Owens began composing at age 10, finding in that activity, as she does today, an entrée into what the poet Rilke calls the "audible landscape," a world of sound.
She earned a B.A. in Music from The City College of New York where she studied composition with Mark Brunswick. She went on to do graduate work in Musicology at New York University. While still in school, she began performing with various orchestras and chamber ensembles, as violinist, pianist and later as harpsichordist. She had the dual role of musical director and harpsichordist for the Staten Island Baroque Ensemble and was a frequent guest artist with the Collegium Musicum of the College of Staten Island. She worked as pianist for the Richmond Opera Collection and, for many years, played first violin in the La Puma Opera Company Orchestra. Her recitals of the piano music of Gurdjieff - de Hartmann have been well attended both in the United States and in Europe, most recently in Carmel, California and at Marymount College in New York City.
She worked as a free-lance editor for various publishers including Southern Music and Harold Flammer. Owens was an early user of computer notation software and in the mid 1980's was a beta tester for HB Engraver. Using an early version of this program, Owens prepared orchestral/vocal scores from hand-written manuscripts for the Kurt Weill Foundation. The print-outs were used for a performance of "Gold" in Carnegie Hall in 1988.
She continues to teach piano and composition privately and was formerly on the faculty of the Neighborhood Music School, New York and the Music Institute of Staten Island. She was awarded teaching grants by the New York State Council on the Arts. Owens has received many commissions and is the winner of many awards and prizes.