ASU School of Music hosts composers for snapshot of today's classical music world


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Arizona State University’s School of Music is hosting the Society of Composers, Inc. Region VII Conference Oct. 13–14. Region VII includes Society of Composers members from Arizona, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, California and Hawaii. Works by composers from throughout the United States and around the world have been selected for performance at the conference.

Jody Rockmaker, associate professor in the School of Music, is the coordinator for the regional conference. The conference places a spotlight on music by today’s composers and the ASU School of Music is providing a safe environment for the exploration of this new music for ASU students, faculty, staff and community to experience.

“All the music programmed in the conference was selected by ASU School of Music faculty through anonymous composer submissions,” Rockmaker said. “The faculty and students will have the opportunity to meet and work with many composers from across the country. They can hear many different approaches to composition, and learn about music programs and opportunities active throughout the United States.”

The Society of Composers, Inc. (SCI) is a professional society dedicated to the promotion, performance, understanding and dissemination of new and contemporary music on a national and regional level by providing opportunities for performance, recording and publication of members’ works. SCI, founded in 1965, has nearly 1,500 members who range from the independent professional, the student studying for a career in composition and composer-professors from all over the United States, Canada and beyond.

Rockmaker said ASU has a very lively SCI student chapter presenting concerts on and off campus, participating in exchange programs with other schools and collaboratively creating works with other Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts disciplines such as dance, film and the visual arts.

SCI student chapter members are actively involved in the conference — assisting with judging submissions and performing in several ensembles. Ensembles performing at the conference include ASU’s laptop orchestra, LORKAS, and the School of Music’s contemporary music ensemble, ACME

“As a student chapter, the experience we have and will receive from participating and helping with this event is valuable to our future goals of hosting larger events,” said Dale Sakamoto, chapter president.

The two-day conference includes a series of five free concerts featuring a variety of compositions with performances by Arizona State University ensembles, students and faculty. Rockmaker said many diverse styles of music will be performed during the conference and attendees can discuss philosophies and attitudes that promote each type of music. 

“We live at a time in history when many different approaches to music exist. You can hear examples of these many styles during this two-day conference,” Rockmaker said. “Each type of music has its champions with examples of superb works.”

Concert 1: 4 p.m. Oct. 13, Evelyn Smith Music Theatre
“Stopped in Time” by Momilani Ramstrum
“We No Longer Hear Human Voices” by Daniel Sitler
“Altamira 1B” by Chris Arrell
“Seeds of Asperity” by Paul David Thomas
“Err29 – KB98712” by John Paul Lempke
“title TBD” by LORKUS, ASU laptop orchestra
“Cimmerian Isolation” by Nathaniel Haering

Concert 2: 7:30 p.m. Oct. 13, Evelyn Smith Music Theatre
“We Seven” by Derek Jenkins
“Radiate, III. Like Shining Energy” by Charles Norman Mason
“Flow” by Richard Power
“Clockwork Mechanics” by Tyler Entelisano
“Prestidigitations” by Joshua Keeling
“Suite Nothings” by Arthur Gottschalk
“Danza Sueno” by Jeffrey Ouper

Concert 3: 11 a.m. Oct. 14, Katzin Concert Hall
“A Long Time” by Stephen Lewis
“Homages & Parodies” by RC McCauley
“A Dream Within a Dream”by Ian Evans Guthrie
“Two Dances” by Christian Thomas
“Introspec 2” by Steven Weiner
“Suite in Two Movements” by Amit Wiener

Concert 4: 2 p.m. Oct. 14, Katzin Concert Hall
“Sextet for percussion” by David Dean Mendoza
“Freezing Winds” by Stephen Morris
“Recombinant” by Daniel Adams
“Bombinate for three soprano saxophones and singing bowl” by Jeffrey Loeffert
“Piano Variations” by Paul Osterfield
“The Voice of Mountains” by Qi Shen

Concert 5: 7:30 p.m. Oct. 14, Katzin Concert Hall
“I Seek Rest for My Lonely Heart” by Mark Dal Porto
“Starry Night” by Jihyun Kim
“If one has courage it is no sorrow to invent songs” by Peter Gilbert
“Miniatures” by Alexander Nohai-Seaman
“Enemy of the Masses” by Tianyi Wan

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