Archive for March, 2018

Trey Makler selected for Juilliard’s OperaComp program

Mizzou composition alumnus Trey Makler has been selected as one of the composers for the 2018 season of OperaComp, The Juilliard School’s “incubator of revolutionary opera from the next generation of composers and writers.”

Makler (pictured) graduated from Mizzou in 2016 and now is living in New York City, studying for an MM in composition at Juilliard. He’s one of six composers taking part in this year’s OperaComp program, for which he has written original music for a scene from “Let Them Eat Cake,” a new short play by librettist and Juilliard playwriting program graduate Ted Malawer. Arthur Makaryan, a master’s student at Columbia University and the current opera directing fellow at Juilliard, is directing the scene.

All six of the new OperaComp works were premiered by singers and a pianist in performances on March 17 and 18 at Juilliard, and will be performed again, this time accompanied by a chamber ensemble, on Sunday, April 22 at the NYC venue National Sawdust.

A native of Farmington, MO, Makler in 2015 was the winner of the Sinquefield Composition Prize, Mizzou’s top award for a student composer, and was one of eight resident composers for the 2016 Mizzou International Composers Festival. In addition to his current studies, he also is a teaching artist fellow with Juilliard’s Office of Community Engagement; assists composition faculty with Juilliard’s conservatory-style music advancement program; and teaches an arts integration curriculum focused on composers from diverse backgrounds to fourth and fifth graders at George Jackson Academy in the Lower East Side of Manhattan.

Now in its second season, OperaComp is an American opera theater artist collective involving collaboration among composers, playwrights, directors, singers, actors, instrumentalists, and designers from The Juilliard School, Columbia University, Fordham University, and NYU.

Mizzou’s COMP Festival to present award-winning works
from Missouri student composers on Saturday, April 21 in Columbia

Audio from the 2018 COMP Festival will stream live online on Saturday, April 21

The Mizzou New Music Initiative will showcase Missouri’s best young composers when the winning works from this year’s Creating Original Music Project (COMP) competition are performed at the 13th annual COMP Festival, held from 10:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Saturday, April 21 in the Fine Arts Building on the campus of the University of Missouri.

Admission is free and open to the public. The junior division concert, featuring works from elementary and middle school winners, begins at 10:30 a.m., with the senior division concert of music by high school winners following at 2:30 p.m.

The festival also will be streamed live online at, with the audio stream going live 10 minutes before the start of each concert.

COMP was founded in 2005 to encourage K-12 students in Missouri to write original music and to provide performance opportunities for those works. It is a joint venture of the University of Missouri’s Mizzou New Music Initiative and the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation, which provides an annual gift of $80,000 to sponsor the competition.

Every year, in addition to having their music performed at the COMP Festival, the winning composers in each age group and category and their schools receive cash prizes. High school winners also receive scholarships to attend the Missouri Summer Composition Institute, Mizzou’s high school summer music composition camp.

“The Mizzou New Music Initiative was created to find and grow composers and make Missouri a mecca for musical composition, and the Creating Original Music Project competition and summer camp were the cornerstones,” said Jeanne Sinquefield of the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation. “Since 2005, more than 200 young Missouri composers have won the K-12 composer competition. Although the Initiative has grown significantly since it began, seeing these young composers develop and respond to the support and encouragement that they get from COMP never gets old.”

The 2018 Creating Original Music Project (COMP) competition categories and winners are:

Elementary School – Song with Words
1) Lucy Gray Hamilton of Eugene Field Elementary, St. Joseph, for “This Old House.” Sponsor: Janell Becerra
2) Finley John Watkins of Bernie Elementary School, Bernie, for “Legend in Me.” Sponsor: Cecilia Lanpher
3) Landon Hall and Brody Oesch of Thomas W. Kelley Elementary, Benton, for “Winter Lights.” Sponsor: Heather DiStefano

Elementary School – Instrumental
1) Yueheng Wang of Ulysses S. Grant Elementary School, Columbia, for “Dancing Waves.” Sponsor: Pamela Sisson.
2) Olivia Bresler of Rogers Elementary School, St. Louis, for “Up in the Sky.” Sponsor: Donna Buehne.
3) Ian Moore of Rogers Elementary School, St. Louis, for “In the King’s Court.” Sponsor: Donna Buehne.

Middle School – Fine Art
1) Christopher Ramsey of The Barstow School, Kansas City, for “Tarantella.” Sponsor: Bruce Dickerson.
2) Brandon Kim of Jefferson Middle School, Columbia, for “The Dreamer.” Sponsor: Jaime Canepa.
3) Charlotte Bauer of The Summit Preparatory School of Southwest Missouri, Springfield, for “Playing With Time.” Sponsor: Shawn Keech.

Middle School – Popular
1) Jordin Mackenzie of The Barstow School, Kansas City, for “Comingbacktoyou.” Sponsor: Bruce Dickerson.
2) Stone Gill of Arcadia Valley Middle School, Ironton, for “Brave.” Sponsor: Charles Lee.
3) Posey Bischoff of Hixson Middle School, Webster Groves, for “About to Grow.” Sponsor: Joe Stevison.

High School – Fine Art
1) Jack Snelling of Webster Groves High School, Webster Groves, for “Napoleonic Dances in F Minor.” Sponsor: Kevin Cole.
2) Olivia Bennett, a home-schooled student from Nixa, for “Nefarious.” Sponsor: Carlyle Sharpe.
3) Brandon Thibodeau of Kearney High School, Kearney, for “Silence.” Sponsor: Chris Heil.

High School – Popular
1) Christian Geil, a home-schooled student from Grandview, for “The Cold Will Come.” Sponsor: Christopher Geil.
2) Katherine Vlamis of Liberty High School, Liberty, for “We Won’t Fall.” Sponsor: Baker Purdon
3) Victoria Raulston of Clever High School, Clever, for “Devour.” Sponsor: Alex Nelson

High School – Jazz
1) Samuel Luetkemeyer of Calvary Lutheran High School, Jefferson City, for “Sibling Rivalry.” Sponsors: Melisa Ahlers.
2) Robyne Sieh of Ft. Zumwalt North High School, O’Fallon, for “The Interview.” Sponsor: Allison Houghton
3) William E. Cremer III of Crawford County R-II High School, Cuba, for “The Overcomer.” Sponsor: Shannon Moore

Each student who enters the competition must have the signature and sponsorship of his or her school’s music teacher. Community agencies, churches, after-school programs, private teachers, and other musical mentors also may sponsor their young musicians in partnership with the student’s school music teacher.

Carolina Heredia to join faculty of
University of Missouri School of Music
as assistant professor of composition

The University of Missouri School of Music will welcome Carolina Heredia as an assistant professor of composition starting with the fall semester in 2018.

Currently a post-doctoral fellow with the Mizzou New Music Initiative, Heredia (pictured) first came to Columbia as one of the eight resident composers for the 2017 Mizzou International Composers Festival. In her new tenure-track job, she’ll teach individual lessons, lead and teach independent and collaborative intermedia projects, and continue to assist with various MNMI programs.

“Carolina Heredia was the best fit for the job, and with that credential, we’re very pleased to welcome her as the first woman ever to join the University of Missouri’s composition faculty,” said Julia Gaines, director of the School of Music and professor of percussion. “As a native of Argentina, she also brings a Latinx influence to our program. We’re delighted that our top candidate also expands the diversity of our faculty in more than one way.”

“Carolina brings a unique and impassioned voice to the Mizzou New Music Initiative,” said Stefan Freund, professor of composition and artistic director of MNMI. “Her work with intermedia is inspiring for our students, and she will be leading them and our area in making collaborative art of the future.”

“I’m thrilled to join the Mizzou community as a full-time faculty member next year. Being here as a postdoc has allowed me to appreciate the enthusiastic, supportive and inspiring environment at the School of Music, and I truly believe this is a unique place,” said Heredia. “I’m very pleased to be part of a composition department that is committed to excellence and inclusivity at all levels of musicianship, while also making an important difference in the larger community.”

Born in Córdoba, Argentina, Carolina Heredia earned her doctorate in musical arts in composition at the University of Michigan, studying with Michael Daugherty and Evan Chambers.

While at Michigan, she also taught electronic music as a graduate student instructor and founded the Khemia Ensemble, a contemporary music group dedicated to creating innovative concert experiences involving interactive technology.

Previously, she earned her degree in music composition from the Universidad and Nacional de Villa María in Villa María, Argentina, and a master’s degree in music composition from the University of Michigan.

Her compositions have been commissioned and performed in the United States and South America by musicians and ensembles including Alarm Will Sound, JACK Quartet, Derek Bermel, Aspen Contemporary Ensemble, Duo Cortona, Tesla Quartet, and Alexander Fiterstein; and featured at events such as the SONIC Festival NYC, Aspen Music Festival and School, Bowling Green New Music Festival, TIES Toronto International Electroacoustic Festival, SEAMUS, New Music Gathering 2017 and 2018, Cordoba Composition Biennial, Mizzou International Composers Festival, and more.

Heredia’s honors and fellowships include the Fromm Commission from Harvard University (2015); a fellowship from the Susan and Ford Schumann Center for Composition Studies at the Aspen Music Festival (2015); an Institute of Humanities Fellowship from University of Michigan (2016-17); a Missouri Music Teachers Association (MMTA) composition commission from Music Teachers National Association and MMTA (2017); the Institute for Research on Women and Gender Award from University of Michigan (2017); and a Paul R. Judy Center for Applied Research grant from Eastman University (2017).

Mizzou New Music Initiative seeks high school students
for Missouri Summer Composition Institute
to be held June 24 – 30 at the University of Missouri

The Mizzou New Music Initiative is looking for Missouri high school students interested in music composition to attend the 2018 Missouri Summer Composition Institute, which will be held from Sunday, June 24 through Saturday, June 30 on the University of Missouri campus in Columbia.

Known informally as “COMP Camp,” after MNMI’s annual Creating Original Music Project contest for student composers, the Institute is open to students entering grades 9-12 and entering college freshman.

The week-long program offers young composers from across the state the opportunity to receive composition lessons from MU faculty, learn from and interact with other creative minds, and compose a new work to be premiered at the end of the week by the camp’s resident ensemble.

The program also is an outstanding value, as the fee is just $100 and includes all instruction and activities, plus six nights in a double room in one of Mizzou’s newest, air-conditioned residence halls and meals.

A total of up to 16 student composers – eight advanced and eight intermediate – will be selected to participate. All current and former Creating Original Music Project contest winners of high school age receive a full scholarship to the Missouri Summer Composition Institute, and additional scholarships are available based on financial need.

The application deadline is Monday, April 23. Applicants must complete the online application form and submit a score and a recording of a representative composition, plus a list of completed works.

Materials can be emailed to MNMI managing director Jacob Gotlib at, or sent by postal mail to: COMP Camp c/o Jacob Gotlib, 138 Fine Arts Building, University of Missouri School of Music, Columbia, MO 65211.

For more information, visit, or contact Jacob Gotlib via email at or by phone at 573-884-9478.