Posts Tagged ‘ Sinquefield Composition Prize

José Guillermo Martínez Rubiano wins 2014 Sinquefield Composition Prize

The University of Missouri School of Music and the Mizzou New Music Initiative have awarded the 2014 Sinquefield Composition Prize to José Guillermo Martínez Rubiano.

Martínez (pictured), a composer and percussionist currently studying for a master’s degree in composition at Mizzou, submitted his orchestral work “Mutaciones I” to the competition and was selected for the prize by a panel of independent judges.

The adjudicators for the 2014 competition were:
* Warren Gooch, professor of music, theory and composition at Truman State University;
* Forrest Pierce, associate professor of composition at the University of Kansas; and
* Ingrid Stölzel, director of the International Center for Music at Park University.

Now in its ninth year, the Sinquefield Composition Prize is the top award for a composition student at Mizzou. As this year’s winner, Martínez now will have the opportunity to write an original work for Mizzou’s University Philharmonic, which will receive its world premiere on Monday, April 7, 2014 at the Chancellor’s Concert in Columbia. With the commission, he also receives a cash prize for the production of the score and parts, and will have his work recorded.

José Guillermo Martínez Rubiano was born in 1983 in Cali, Valle del Cauca, Colombia. He earned his diploma at the Conservatory of Music at the National University of Colombia in Bogotá in 2009. That same year, he received Colombia’s national composition prize for young composers from the National Ministry of Culture. His other significant awards include winning a Colombian national composition contest in 2011, and the National Cultural Prize from the Universidad de Antioquia in Medellín, which he received earlier this year for “Mutaciones I.”

Martinez was co-founder of the Bogotá conservatory’s Contemporary Music Ensemble and is music director for the percussion ensemble Ictu5. As a percussionist, he also won a national performance contest in 2004; has been a member of the percussion ensembles Contempo, Sinergia Ensamble, and Octopus; and for five years was timpanist for the Bogotá Symphonic Orchestra Foundation (FOSBO).

The other finalists for the 2014 Sinquefield Composition Prize were Justin Pounds, Matthew Stiens, and Robert Strobel.

Composers Festival Spotlight: David Witter

David Witter


Today, let’s get acquainted with David Witter, another of the eight resident composers at this year’s Mizzou International Composers Festival.

A native of Holt’s Summit, MO (near Jefferson City) and current resident of Columbia, Witter has studied composition with W. Thomas McKenney and Stefan Freund, earning his bachelor’s degree in music from Mizzou in 2010 and an M.M. degree in 2012. While working this past academic year toward his K-12 teaching certification, he was awarded the 2013 Sinquefield Composition Prize, resulting in a new commission to write a work for the University Philharmonic.

Previously, he was one of three Mizzou composers selected to write a piece inspired by the 2010 Great Rivers Biennial exhibition at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis. This project was documented in the short film The Sound of Art, which you can see in the embedded video window at the very end of this post.

Witter also has a strong interest in improvised music and jazz. He can be heard playing trombone on recent recordings by the University of Missouri Concert Jazz Band, and also works around Columbia with smaller jazz ensembles. He has led performances of the MU Creative Improvisation Ensemble at conferences in Ann Arbor, MI and Paterson, NJ, and is a member of the Gamma Gamma chapter of Pi Kappa Lambda.

The US Navy veteran and father of two was profiled last year in an article in the Columbia Daily Tribune, which you can read online here.

You can hear an audio recording of Witter’s composition “Missouri,” written after he won the Sinquefield Composition Prize and premiered by the University Philharmonic at the Chancellor’s Concert on March 11, 2013, in the embedded window below.

The Sound of Art

Missouri Couple Gives $1.4 Million to Continue New Music Initiative

Dr. Jeanne Sinquefield at the Chancellor's Concert on Monday, March 11, announcing a $1.4 million gift to the MU School of Music

The University of Missouri has announced that a generous gift from the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation will support programs and scholarships directed toward promoting the creation of new music

Jeanne and Rex Sinquefield of Westphalia, MO have given the University $1.4 million to continue and expand the Mizzou New Music Initiative (MNMI) and the Creating Original Music Project (C.O.M.P) at MU. The gift announcement was made at the annual MU Chancellor’s Concert Monday evening.

The Sinquefields’ support for composition at Mizzou began more than eight years ago with C.O.M.P., the Sinquefield Prize for composition and a high school summer camp. In 2009, they gave $1 million to MU to expand university scholarships, ensembles, faculty support, and create an international composer festival. To continue the work, the Sinquefields are giving a new gift of $1.4 million over the next three years.

“I have been overwhelmed by the success of the MNMI,” Jeanne Sinquefield said. “Since the program began, more than 300 new pieces of music have been written, performed and recorded – some more successful than others, but all providing valuable learning experiences for their composers. And when a composer succeeds, there is nothing better than listening to a beautiful piece of music that you have encouraged to be written.”

“The Sinquefields’ generous gift allows us to provide diverse opportunities to composers across various stages of their careers,” William Lackey, managing director of the Mizzou New Music Initiative, said. “The Mizzou New Music Initiative has played a pivotal role in the lives of many composers, and this gift not only supports Missouri composers but composers around the world. During the past four years, it has been an honor to witness the impact of the Initiative, and I look forward to working with Thomas McKenney and Stefan Freund, co-artistic directors of the Initiative, to build upon our current programs funded through this renewed gift.”

“At MU, we are dedicated to promoting and proliferation of the arts,” said MU Chancellor Brady Deaton. “The Sinquefields’ gifts and vision have helped position the university as a leader in the education and creation of new music and we are ever grateful for their generosity.”

Beyond supporting the MNMI and the Creating Original Music Project, the Sinquefields’ gift will support graduate assistantships, undergraduate full-tuition scholarships, and the annual Mizzou International Composers Festival, as well as provide support for faculty and staff positions and for various special projects including visiting composers, visiting performers, recording projects, and commissions of new works.

“Through their inspiring support, passion, and vision, the Sinquefields have established MU as a destination for composers of all ages,” said Robert Shay, director of the MU School of Music. “The programs of the Mizzou New Music Initiative and the Creating Original Music Project are the direct result of their past generosity. This new gift will allow the School of Music to take its programs to next level, nationally and internationally.”

“Rarely do you see such a long-term commitment to a project like the Sinquefields have shown with their commitment to promoting the creation of new music,” said Michael O’Brien, dean of the MU College of Arts and Science. “Their gifts to MU have given the School of Music a tremendous advantage in attracting top notch students and faculty. Students now know MU is the place to be if they want to study music composition.”

David Witter wins 2013 Sinquefield Composition Prize

The University of Missouri School of Music and the Mizzou New Music Initiative are pleased to announce that David Witter is the winner of the 2013 Sinquefield Composition Prize. Witter, who holds both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in composition from Mizzou, submitted his piece “Garden Music” to the competition and was selected for the prize by a panel of independent judges.

The adjudicators for the 2013 competition were:
* Mara Gibson, director of the Community Music and Dance Academy and a member of the composition faculty at the UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance in Kansas City;
* Eric Honour, professor of music at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg, MO; and
* Ingrid Stölzel, an instructor at Park University, composer with newEar contemporary chamber ensemble, and program manager for the Youth Symphony of Kansas City.

As winner of the 2013 Sinquefield Composition Prize, Witter now will have the opportunity to write an original work for Mizzou’s University Philharmonic, which will receive its world premiere on Monday, March 11, 2013 at the Chancellor’s Concert in Columbia. With the commission, he also receives a cash prize for the production of the score and parts, and will have his work recorded.

David Witter, born in 1978, is a composer, trombonist, improvisor, and educator originally from Holts Summit, MO. Now living in Columbia, he holds B.M. and M.M. degrees in composition from the University of Missouri, where he studied with W. Thomas McKenney and Stefan Freund. Witter (pictured) also was a finalist for the 2012 Sinquefield Composition Prize for his piece “Water Music”.

Witter’s compositions have been performed by the Mizzou New Music Ensemble at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis and the Missouri Botanical Garden, and he has led performances of the MU Creative Improvisation Ensemble at conferences in Ann Arbor, MI and Paterson, NJ. Witter is a member of the Gamma Gamma chapter of Pi Kappa Lambda, and currently is pursuing a Missouri teaching certification for K-12, after which he will teach elementary and middle school music.

The other finalists for the 2013 Sinquefield Composition Prize were Justin Pounds and Joseph Hills.

Patrick David Clark traveling to Iraq to teach composition

Patrick David Clark

Composer and Mizzou graduate Patrick David Clark (pictured) will bring new music to an ancient city when he goes to Iraq at the end of this month. His mission: to teach composition to students in the northern Iraqi town of Erbil.

“It’s a kind of cultural diplomacy,” said Clark, who will be traveling under the auspices of the organization American Voices. He will leave for Iraq this Wednesday, June 27 and stay until July 15. “We bring American music and teachers to places where the education system is not its best, due to the country emerging from isolation and conflict.”

Located in a primarily Kurdish region of Iraq, Erbil is the country’s fourth largest city. With a history dating back to 6,000 B.C., it also is one of the longest continuously inhabited cities in the world. While he’s there, Clark will work with high school students at American Voices’ YES Academy, teaching them composition and music theory.

Clark said that his prospective students already have some musical experience, gained over the past five years thanks to an American Voices program offering training in stringed instruments. His goal is help the students take the next step and begin creating their own compositions. “We’re going to try to get them to write music,” he said.

Clark said he also wants to expose his students to various styles of contemporary American composition, and plans to take plenty of orchestral scores and recordings to share.

Over the last 16 years, American Voices has presented summer youth performing arts academies, workshops, and concerts in more than 110 countries. The organization has offices in St. Louis and Bangkok. Financial support for Clark’s trip is coming from American Voices board member Jeanne Sinquefield and the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation, which also funds the Mizzou New mUsic Initiative.

Clark just completed a master’s degree in orchestral conducting at Mizzou. In 2011 he won the Sinquefield Composition Prize and was one of eight resident composers selected to participate in the Mizzou New Music Festival. Clark was born in 1967 in St. Louis, grew up in Normandy, and attended Clayton High School. He also holds a Bachelors degree in composition from MU, which he earned studying with Dr. Thomas McKenney.

Clark earned a DMA in composition from the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University, studying with Arthur Gottschalk and Richard Lavenda. He became a Tanglewood Fellow in 1998, and from 1999 to 2001 studied with Louis Andriessen at the Royal Conservatory of the Hague on a Netherlands-America Foundation Grant. Clark also has worked as a composer; as a writer for Andante.com; and as a teacher in the Netherlands, Los Angeles and Albuquerque, NM.

Columbia celebrates contemporary composers with four visionary events in March

For the past two years, the Mizzou New Music Summer Festival has brought visionary composers and musicians to Columbia in July for a week of concerts and workshops. Now the Mizzou New Music Initiative, will team up in March with the Columbia Civic Orchestra and Odyssey Chamber Music Series to present another week of performances focusing on the future of music.

“4C: Columbia Celebrates Contemporary Composers” will take place from Sunday, March 4 through Saturday, March 10. The week will feature concerts by four different ensembles, including the Columbia debut of the Grammy Award winning new music group eighth blackbird (pictured).

“4C” also will include the debut of this year’s Sinquefield Composition Prize commission, written by Mizzou student Michael E. Anderson and performed by the University Philharmonic Orchestra. The week will conclude with a special concert by the Columbia Civic Orchestra, playing four new works selected through the new Missouri Composers Orchestra Project. The schedule for the week is:

Sunday, March 4: The Mizzou New Music Ensemble performs a program including music by Pulitzer Prize winner Jennifer Higdon and the world premiere of a new piece by MU professor W. Thomas McKenney.
* 8:00 p.m. at Whitmore Recital Hall on the MU campus.
* Admission is free to Mizzou students, $5 suggested donation at the door for the public.

Monday, March 5: The University of Missouri Chancellor’s Concert features the University Philharmonic Orchestra with the premiere of this year’s Sinquefield Composition Prize commission by Michael E. Anderson.
* 7:30 p.m. at the Missouri Theatre, 203 South 9th St..
* Tickets are $10 for general admission, $5 for Mizzou students.

Friday, March 9: The internationally acclaimed touring ensemble eighth blackbird makes its Columbia debut in a concert co-presented by the MU School of Music and Odyssey Chamber Music Series.
* 7:00 p.m. at First Baptist Church, 1112 E. Broadway.
* Tickets are $20 for general admission, $10 for students, children under 12 free.

eighth blackbird is a Chicago-based sextet that “combines the finesse of a string quartet with the energy of a rock band and the riskiness of a storefront theater company. Its musical aerobatics delight, provoke and entertain audiences around the world.” They have collaborated with numerous contemporary composers and released four recordings, including strange imaginary animals (2006), which won two Grammy Awards. Their most recent CD Lonely Motel: Music from Slide is nominated for four Grammy Awards.

The Odyssey Chamber Music Series is “committed to presenting masterpieces of chamber music repertoire that span over four centuries, in mixed ensembles of all instruments. Odyssey hopes to cultivate interest in quality classical music performances through innovative programming involving professional local performers as well as guest artists from outside the community. The organization also hopes to educate audiences and the next generation of performers through program notes, pre-concert lectures, and student performances.”

Saturday, March 10: The Columbia Civic Orchestra plays works selected through the Missouri Composers Orchestra Project, including “Euphoria Overture” by Michael Blackwood, “This Is the Garden” by Joseph Eidson, “Menuet Macabre” by Warren Gooch; and “The Tragedy of the Hero” by Edward Crouse.
* 7:00 p.m. at Columbia College’s Launer Auditorium.
* Free and open to the public.

The Columbia Civic Orchestra (CCO) is a volunteer group located in Columbia, Missouri, dedicated to providing enjoyment for its members and audiences with the presentation and preservation of high-quality symphonic music.

The Missouri Composers Orchestra Project is a joint venture of the CCO and the Mizzou New Music Initiative, sponsored by the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation and intended to encourage the performance of contemporary orchestral works written by Missouri natives or composers living in the state.

Tickets for the Chancellor’s Concert may be purchased in advance from http://www.concertseries.org/ or at the door. Tickets for eighth blackbird are on sale now at http://www.odysseymissouri.org/tickets.html and also will be on sale at the door.

Michael E. Anderson wins 2012 Sinquefield Composition Prize

Michael E. Anderson

Mizzou senior Michael E. Anderson is the winner of the 2012 Sinquefield Composition Prize

The University of Missouri School of Music and the Mizzou New Music Initiative are pleased to announce that Michael E. Anderson (pictured) is the winner of the 2012 Sinquefield Composition Prize.

Anderson, a Mizzou senior, submitted his piece “At the Mercy of the Forest” to the competition and was selected for the prize by a panel of independent judges.

The adjudicators for the 2012 competition were Warren Gooch, professor of music theory and composition at Truman State University in Kirksville, MO; Martin Kennedy, assistant professor of composition and theory at Washington University in St. Louis; and Renee Waters, coordinator of music theory and professor of music at Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, MO.

As winner of the 2012 Sinquefield Composition Prize, Anderson now will have the opportunity to write an original work for Mizzou’s University Philharmonic, which will receive its world premiere on Monday, March 5, 2012 at the Chancellor’s Concert in Columbia. With the commission, he also receives a cash prize for the production of the score and parts and will have his work recorded.

Michael Anderson currently is working on a bachelor of music degree in composition at Mizzou, studying with W. Thomas McKenney and Stefan Freund. A native of Platte City, MO and graduate of Platte County R-3 High School, Anderson also was a finalist for last year’s Sinquefield Composition Prize with his piece “Dendrocnide.”

His works have been performed by ensembles including the Rezound! Handbell Choir, the KC Vibrations Handbell Choir, the Mizzou New Music Ensemble, the MU Saxophone Ensemble, and various other chamber groups. In addition to composing, Anderson performs as a saxophonist in the University of Missouri’s Wind Ensemble, and is a member of the Columbia Handbell Ensemble and the Zeta Chapter of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.

The other finalists for the 2012 Sinquefield Composition Prize were Grant Fonda, Joe Hills and David Witter. We congratulate all four composers on this notable achievement!

Patrick David Clark wins 2011 Sinquefield Composition Prize

The University of Missouri School of Music is pleased to announce that Patrick David Clark (pictured) is the winner of the 2011 Sinquefield Composition Prize. Clark, a graduate student studying orchestral conducting, submitted his orchestral composition “Glancing Blade” to the competition and was selected for the prize by a panel of independent judges.

The adjudicators for the 2011 competition were Mara Gibson, director of the Community Music and Dance Academy in Kansas City and a member of the composition faculty at the UMKC Conservatory of Music; Eric Honour, professor of music at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg; and Forrest Pierce, assistant professor of music composition at the University of Kansas.

As winner of the 2011 Sinquefield Composition Prize, Clark now will have the opportunity to write an original work for one of Mizzou’s premier large ensembles, which will receive its world premiere on Monday, March 14, 2011 at the Chancellor’s Concert in Columbia. With the commission, he also receives a cash prize for the production of the score and parts and will have his work recorded.

Born in 1967, Patrick David Clark currently is currently working on a Masters degree in orchestral conducting at Mizzou, where he is studying with Edward Dolbashian. He also holds a Bachelors degree in composition from MU, which he earned studying with Dr. Thomas McKenney. Clark earned a DMA in composition from the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University, studying with Arthur Gottschalk and Richard Lavenda. He became a Tanglewood Fellow in 1998, and from 1999 to 2001 studied with Louis Andriessen at the Royal Conservatory of the Hague on a Netherlands-America Foundation Grant. Clark also has worked as a composer; as a writer for Andante.com; and as a teacher in the Netherlands, Los Angeles and Albuquerque, NM.

The other finalists for the 2011 Sinquefield Composition Prize were Michael Anderson, Grant Fonda, and David Witter. Please join us in congratulating all four composers on this notable achievement!