Archive for November, 2014

MNMI alumni in the news

Several Mizzou composition alumni have been in the news this fall:

* Grant Fonda, who earned his master’s degree at Mizzou in 2012, was featured as a “composer to watch” as part of ASCAP’s “Composer Spotlight.”

Fonda (pictured) was selected earlier this year to take part in the the organization’s Film Scoring Workshop in Los Angeles.

* Michael Anderson, who graduated and won the Sinquefield Composition Prize in 2012, had a new work, “The Heart of A Land” premiered by the combined forces of the Parkville Symphonic Band and the Platte City Community Band at their joint concert on October 26. A native of Platte City, Anderson wrote the piece on commission for the concert celebrating the 175th anniversary of Platte County.

* Stephanie Berg, who’s originally from Parkville, also had a piece on the same concert, as the Parkville Symphonic Band played her work “Pick Up Your Sword and Follow Me!” The band also will play Berg’s “Summoning Fire” at their spring concert on April 12.

Berg, who earned her master’s degree in 2013, currently is finishing up an original score for a theatrical production of “A Christmas Carol!” that will run from December 12 through December 21 at  the Lyceum Theatre in Arrow Rock, MO. She also learned recently that the Quincy (IL) Symphony Orchestra Association will be performing her work “Ravish and Mayhem” as part of a concert on April 18.

And if all that weren’t enough, the DDG Trio has scheduled several performances of Berg’s woodwind trio “The Featherlight Ballet.”  They’ll play the work in Conway, AR on a concert series called “Under the Dome” on January 25; at Harding University on February 12; and as part of the Arkansas Symphony’s chamber series River Rhapsodies on March 3. You can hear their recording of the piece in the embedded SoundCloud player below.

Creating Original Music Project (C.O.M.P.) celebrates tenth year of prizes, recognition for Missouri student composers

Dr. Jeanne Sinquefield with multiple C.O.M.P. winner HyunJun Yoo of Columbia

Over the past nine years, the Mizzou New Music Initiative’s Creating Original Music Project (C.O.M.P) has encouraged the musical dreams and aspirations of hundreds of K-12 students across Missouri. Now for its tenth year, the annual statewide competition sponsored by the University of Missouri School of Music and the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation once again is looking for new, original music from student composers and songwriters in the Show-Me State.

Information was mailed last month to music teachers across the state inviting students to participate in the 2015 competition. The winning composers and their schools will be awarded cash prizes, and the winning compositions will be performed at the Creating Original Music Project’s New Music Festival on Saturday, April 18, 2015 at the University of Missouri in Columbia.

Students in grades K-5 may submit compositions in two categories, Songs With Words and Instrumental Pieces. For grades 6-8, the categories are Fine Art Music and Popular Music; and for grades 9-12, they are Fine Art Music, Popular Music, Jazz, and Other styles. All entries must be original music written by the student, and only one entry per student is allowed. Arrangements of previously composed pieces or improvisation based on composed pieces will not be accepted.

Mentors and teachers are encouraged to offer support and critiques, though the submissions must be the students’ own original compositions. Music teachers and/or mentors may assist students in notating or recording the pieces, and each student who applies must have the signature and sponsorship of their school’s music teacher. Only three submissions per category per school are allowed. It is the responsibility of the school music teacher(s) to decide which three pieces per category will be entered in the contest. The postmark deadline for submission of all compositions is January 10, 2015.

For more information about the Creating Original Music Project and an application for the 2015 competition, please visit the C.O.M.P website at http://music.missouri.edu/COMP/.

For students looking for additional guidance or feedback on their work, the Mizzou New Music Initiative also offers Composer Connection, a distance-learning program that gives aspiring composers a chance to talk with and receive instruction from a graduate student in composition at MU. Students can e-mail works in progress and ask questions about composing, and receive suggestions and answers directly from the composer on call. The composer on call for the 2014-15 academic year is Justin Pounds, who can be reached by email at composerconnection@missouri.edu.

Mizzou composers, Stephens College choreographers
collaborating again for concerts on November 14, 15 & 16

Composers from the Mizzou New Music Initiative are working once again with choreographers and dancers from Stephens College to create original music for this year’s Senior Dance Concert at Stephens.

The performances will take place at 7:30 p.m. Friday, November 14 and Saturday, November 15, and at 2:00 p.m. Sunday, November 16 at the Macklanburg Playhouse, 100 Willis Ave on the Stephens campus.

Tickets are $8 for general admission, $6 for students and seniors, and can be purchased in advance at the Macklanburg Playhouse box office; by calling 573-876-7199; or at the door.

Renewing the collaboration between MNMI and Stephens that began in the 2013-14 academic year, the concert will feature dances choreographed by Stephens students to three original works by Mizzou composers.

Stephens seniors Kyla Ranney and Jessie Burgess have created choreography for two pieces written by Erin Hoerchler, a sophomore composition major at Mizzou, and MU graduate student Kaylene Cypret has composed music for senior Alexis Collins’ dance.

For Stephens’ graduating dance majors, the Senior Dance Concert performances represent the culmination of their personal dance experiences, and the collaboration with Mizzou affords them the rare opportunity to perform with live musical accompaniment, provided by the Mizzou New Music Ensemble.

The seven-member Ensemble is made up of University of Missouri graduate students under the direction of Stefan Freund, a cellist, composer and associate professor.

The Ensemble’s members for the 2014-15 season are Taylor Burkhardt, piano; Rachel Czech, cello; Jose Martínez, percussion; Jeremiah Rittel, clarinets; Erin Spencer, flute; Britney Stutz, violin; and Korin Wahl, viola. Joining them for the performances at Stephens will be two guest musicians from Mizzou, violinist Graham Woodland and clarinetist Travis Herd.

“The composers and performers of the Mizzou New Music Initiative are truly grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with Stephens’ choreographers and dancers,” said William Lackey, assistant teaching professor of composition and managing director of the Mizzou New Music Initiative. “As a teacher, I always want to provide young composers with opportunities that will push them artistically.”