Archive for the ‘ Mizzou New Music Initiative ’ Category

Construction progressing on Mizzou’s new School of Music building

After a ground-breaking ceremony in April, construction of the School of Music’s new building has been progressing throughout the spring and summer. For an overview of what’s happened so far, check out the embedded video in this post.

The new building will bring together in one place offices and classrooms that currently are spread across six different locations on the Mizzou campus, and is scheduled to open in time for the Fall 2019 semester. The project is being funded by donations including a $10 million lead gift from Dr. Jeanne and Rex Sinquefield and the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation.

Work will be ongoing for the next year, and you can see regular updates from the site via the “construction cam” accessible from the School of Music’s website.

Yoshi Onishi answers “5 Questions” from I Care If You Listen

The Mizzou New Music Initiative’s new postdoctoral fellow Yoshiaki “Yoshi” Onishi is the subject of a “5 Questions” interview published last week by the new-music website I Care If You Listen.

In the interview, Onishi (pictured) talks with ICIYL’s Alexander Rothe about his compositional process and his ongoing project “Les Six Aspects du Néant” (“The Six Aspects of Nothingness”).

The work is a cycle of six pieces for string quartet, parts of which will be performed this fall at the Vertixe Sonora Festival in Spain, the 45th International Viola Congress in Rotterdam, and the Trieste Prima Festival in Italy.

You can read the complete interview here.

Erin Hoerchler wins ASCAP Foundation scholarship

Mizzou alum Erin Marie Hoerchler is the winner of the 2018 ASCAP Foundation Frederick Loewe Scholarship.

Hoerchler (pictured), who earned her bachelor of music degree in composition from Mizzou in 2017, is a composer, vocalist, and musical director with a particular interest in musical theater.

She will begin work in September on a master of fine arts degree from New York University’s Graduate Musical Theatre Writing program.

The ASCAP Foundation Frederick Loewe Scholarship is presented annually to a student of musical theater composition at the NYU Tisch School of the Arts.

Tickets for 2018 Mizzou International Composers Festival
go on sale Friday, May 25

Tickets for the 2018 Mizzou International Composers Festival (MICF) will go on sale at 10:00 a.m. CDT on Friday, May 25.

Recognized as an important regional showcase for new works by top young composers, the MICF will take place this year from Monday, July 23 through Saturday, July 28 in Columbia, and will include three public concerts.

Returning for the ninth year as the festival’s resident ensemble, Alarm Will Sound will begin the weekend of shows at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, July 26 at the Missouri Theatre, 203 S. Ninth St. in downtown Columbia.

They’ll perform music from the 2018 MICF’s distinguished guest composers, Chen Yi and Alex Mincek, as well as a work by Mizzou’s Stefan Freund and more.

The following evening, the “Mizzou New Music” concert at 7:30 p.m., Friday, July 27 at the Missouri Theatre will feature the Mizzou New Music Ensemble performing works by Chen and Mincek, plus the Missouri Clarinet Quartet playing new music by Stefan Freund, Carolina Heredia, and Aaron Mencher.

The grand finale of the week will showcase the world premieres of seven new works written by the festival’s resident composers and performed by Alarm Will Sound at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, July 28 at the Missouri Theatre.

Festival VIP packages are $80, and include reserved premium seating at all three concerts; two drink tickets good at the Thursday and Friday performances; and admission to a VIP reception prior to the Saturday evening performance, featuring champagne and hors d’oeuvres with members of Alarm Will Sound and the composers.

Festival passes for all three concerts are $40 for an adult general admission pass, and $20 for a student general admission pass.

Single tickets are priced at $18 for adults, $10 for students, and are all general admission. Tickets can be charged by phone using Visa, MasterCard or Discover by calling 1-573-882-3781. To buy tickets online, visit http://composersfestival.missouri.edu/.

The MICF also offers a special limited-time discount for early ticket buyers. If you purchase tickets before June 3 and use the promotional code, you can get single adult tickets for any MICF concert for just $10 each (regular price $18), while student tickets are discounted to $7 (from $10).

To get the discount, use “2018MICF” (without quotes) when prompted for a promotional code. This offer is good only on tickets purchased between May 25 and June 3, 2018.

In addition to these three concerts, the MICF also will feature several free events, including open rehearsals and presentations by the participating composers. A complete schedule of those events will be released at a later date.

The seven resident composers were chosen from among more than 240 applicants from 22 different countries to participate in the festival and create a new work for Alarm Will Sound. Listed with their current places of residence, they are:

* Oren Boneh, Berkeley, CA
* Christine Burke, Iowa City, IA
* Viet Cuong, Philadelphia, PA
* Amanda Feery, Princeton, NJ
* Douglas Osmun, Columbia, MO
* Gemma Peacocke, Princeton, NJ
* Igor Santos, Chicago, IL

An eighth resident composer, Peter Shin, was announced as part of the group in December 2017, but had to postpone his participation due to scheduling conflicts. “At the same time that Peter was selected for the MICF, he also received a commission to write a new work for the Los Angeles Philharmonic,” said Stefan Freund, professor of composition and artistic director of the Mizzou New Music Initiative. “When it became apparent that he could not complete both pieces in time, we extended an invitation to him to be part of our 2019 festival, and we look forward to working with him next year.”

During the festival, the resident composers will receive composition lessons from distinguished guest composers Chen Yi, who is a distinguished professor of composition at the Conservatory of Music and Dance at the University of Missouri-Kansas City; and Alex Mincek, an assistant professor, composition and music technology at Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music and a co-founder and artistic director of the Wet Ink Ensemble.

The resident composers also will take part in rehearsals with Alarm Will Sound; give presentations on their music; and receive a premiere performance and professional live recording of their work.

Mizzou New Music Initiative 2017-18 year in review

Stefan Freund’s “Unremixed” featured in new Alarm Will Sound music video

“Unremixed,” a composition by Mizzou’s Stefan Freund, is featured in a new music video from Alarm Will Sound.

Freund, who is professor of composition at Mizzou and the artistic director of the Mizzou New Music Initiative, also is a co-founder of and cellist for Alarm Will Sound, the new music group who since 2010 has served as resident ensemble for the Mizzou International Composers Festival. There’s another local connection, too, as the video was shot at Spectrum Studios in Columbia.

You can see the complete music video for “Unremixed” in the embedded window below, followed by the production notes from Alarm Will Sound.

“Unremixed” was written for Alarm Will Sound’s debut at the Lincoln Center Festival in 2005. The work was created as a finale for the concert, which was the complete presentation of “Acoustica,” Alarm Will Sound’s album of arrangements of Aphex Twin’s electronica. The work integrates several ideas from Aphex Twin’s music as well as instrumental techniques used in Acoustica arrangements to imitate electronic sounds.

“Unremixed” is divided into four sections. The first features the descent from “Gwely Mernans” presented in various ratios against a consistent quarter note pulse divided into sixteenths. A lick similar to the pentatonic figures found in “Cliffs” emerges, played in different meters against the pulse.

A bombastic percussion solo leads to the second section, which places a firm 5/4 pulse against a tune formed from two phrases of 10/16 that change their division of the meter. Though not directly taken from the music of Aphex Twin, the tune is reminiscent of many modal funky grooves found in electronic dance music. Eventually it is placed against the descent from the previous section.

The third section imitates the industrial sound of electronica. The tune from “Meltphace 6” emerges over a 7/8 groove whose working title was “Sick Machine.” Various layers are added to the texture to grow towards a giant climax.

The final section is a simple dance party featuring techno drum tracks that grow increasingly complex and a sped up presentation of the mixed meter dance tune from the second section. The performers are encouraged to get a little rowdy towards the end.

Composed by Stefan Freund
Performed by Alarm Will Sound
Shot by Four/Ten Media

Alarm Will Sound:
Erin Lesser, flute
Christa Robinson, oboe
Bill Kalinkos, clarinet and saxophone
Elisabeth Stimpert, clarinet
Michael Harley, bassoon
Matt Marks, horn
Tim Leopold, trumpet
Michael Clayville, trombone
Chris Thompson, percussion
Matt Smallcomb, percussion
John Orfe, piano
Courtney Orlando, violin
Caleb Burhans, violin
Stefan Freund, cello
Miles Brown, bass
Alan Pierson, conductor and Artistic Director

Daniel Neumann, Audio Engineer
Gavin Chuck, Managing Director
Nigel Maister, Theatrical Director
Jason Varvaro, Production Manager
Peter Ferry, Production Assistant
Chihiro Shibayama, Librarian
Tracy Mendez, Development Manager

Special thanks to these musicians for their contribution to the video:
Andrew Nogal (oboe), Megan Arns (percussion), Ben Russell (violin), Karin Brown (viola)

Special thanks to these musicians who performed on the recording:
Jason Price (trumpet), Nadia Sirota (viola), Chihiro Shibayama (percussion), Juilia Gaines (percussion)

Filmed at Spectrum Studios during an Alarm Will Sound residency at the University of Missouri sponsored by the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation. Funding for the video shoot came from the MU Research Council.

MADSM Collegiate Composer Competition
seeks new works for chamber ensemble

The Missouri Association of Departments and Schools of Music (MADSM) and the Mizzou New Music Initiative are co-sponsoring a new competition for collegiate composers in Missouri to encourage the creation of original chamber music that can be played by high-school level musicians

The MADSM Collegiate Composer Competition is open to all students currently enrolled in any MADSM member institution, with separate categories for undergraduate and graduate students. Composers are asked to write a new work from five to seven minutes in length for a group of three to five musicians, consisting of some combination of flute, clarinet, piano, violin, cello, and percussion.

Scores and recordings must be submitted online by Friday, September 14, and winners will be announced on Monday, November 12.

Winning composers then will be invited to the University of Missouri, where their pieces will be workshopped and recorded by the Mizzou New Music Ensemble. The Ensemble will premiere this year’s winning works in January 2019 at the Missouri Music Educators Association conference in Osage Beach, with the goal of attracting future opportunities on concert programs around the state.

For more information or to submit an entry, go to https://music.missouri.edu/mnmi/madsm-composition-contest.

The Missouri Association of Departments and Schools of Music (MADSM) includes all institutions in the state of Missouri that offer post-secondary music study. MADSM offers a regular forum for leaders from these institutions to discuss issues pertaining to music study; to provide mutual support for each other; and to advocate for music education at the collegiate level, presenting a strong and unified voice for music education in Missouri.

Mizzou New Music Ensemble to debut “Innovation Symphony”
with performances in Columbia and St. Louis

The Mizzou New Music Ensemble will celebrate the spirit of creativity in technology and the arts with performances in Columbia and St. Louis of “Innovation Symphony,” a new collaborative, multi-part work by four Mizzou student composers.

“Innovation Symphony” will be previewed in a concert at 7:30 p.m. Monday, April 23 at Whitmore Recital Hall on the University of Missouri campus in Columbia.

The work’s official premiere will be presented by Venture Cafe St. Louis at 8:00 p.m. Saturday, April 28 at the Cortex Innovation Community‘s @4240 building, located at 4240 Duncan Ave. in St. Louis.

The concert in Columbia is free and open to the public. Admission to the performance in St. Louis also is free and open to the public, but those wishing to attend are asked to RSVP online at https://innovationsymphony.eventbrite.com/.

“Innovation Symphony” has four sections, each written by a different composer based on a specific aspect of the Cortex Innovation Community, and was composed specifically for the Mizzou New Music Ensemble (pictured) with funding from the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation.

The sections are “A Creative Meditation,” written by Libby Roberts, who’s in her first year of study for a master’s degree in composition at Mizzou and is the pianist for the Ensemble; “Breath of Life,” by Ethan Forte, a sophomore composition major at Mizzou; “Efficiency of Locomotion,” by Adam Cohen, also a sophomore composition major; and “Untitled (Room to Breathe)” by Mikkel Christensen, who’s also a first year master’s student in composition.

“Innovation Symphony” does more than explore innovation as a subject, as the composers also have deployed unusual, creative techniques and instruments in their scores. For example, Christensen’s segment uses wood and plastic percussion instruments custom-built by the composer, while Roberts’ work incorporates a high-tech form of audience participation. Her composition includes ambient sounds that audience members will be able to trigger during the performance from three Novation Launchpad Minis, which are push-button controllers designed specifically for electronic music.

Before the premiere in St. Louis, all four composers will be on hand for Venture Cafe St. Louis’ weekly “Thursday Gathering” at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, April 26 at Venture Cafe, 4240 Duncan Ave, to give a presentation about their works and compositional processes. That event also is free and open to the public, with no RSVP required.

Venture Cafe St. Louis is an organization dedicated to connecting innovators to make things happen. Cortex Innovation Community is a 200-acre innovation hub and technology district integrated into St. Louis’ historic Central West End and Forest Park Southeast residential neighborhoods.