2019 McKnight Composer Fellows and McKnight Visiting Composers Announced

2019 McKnight Fellows And McKnight Visiting

ST. PAUL, MN – The American Composers Forum (ACF) today announced the recipients of this year’s McKnight Fellowships for Composers, funded by the McKnight Foundation. These awards, which include $25,000 in unrestricted funds for each recipient, are an investment in the artistic and professional development of the selected artists. The four fellows were chosen from […]

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Spring ChoralQuest Rolling World Premieres and Travel with Abbie Betinis

Our newest ChoralQuest piece Song in My Head by composer Abbie Betinis received its first two rolling world premieres this spring. Betinis is the first ChoralQuest composer to pilot a new hybrid residency model, working directly with Cottage Grove Middle School in Cottage Grove, MN, and virtually with Lakeside School in Seattle, WA, and Sister […]

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Educators of the Winners of the NextNotes High School Composition Awards Program Recognized

The American Composers Forum, in partnership with MakeMusic®, is proud to acknowledge the influential teachers of the 2019 NextNotes® High School Composition Awards winners. NextNotes is a national program designed to nurture the next generation of creative voices in music composition regardless of musical style. The following winners were selected for their compositional skills and […]

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American Composers Forum Announced Winners of the NextNotes® High School Awards

Download PDF Press Release Here The American Composers Forum (ACF) is thrilled to announce the winners of the fifth annual NextNotes® High School Composition Awards. NextNotes is a national program designed to nurture the next generation of creative voices in music composition inclusive of all musical styles. Awards encourage and recognize the creative and talented […]

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American Composers Forum Connect Program (ACF | connect) Partners with the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians™ (AACM)

AACM Great Black Music Ensemble

ACF to Award Three Commissions for Composers to Have World Premieres Performed by Great Black Music Ensemble, Part of AACM’s 55th Anniversary Season The American Composers Forum Connect Program (ACF | connect) today announces its partnership with the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) and the Great Black Music Ensemble for the 2019-20 […]

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Minneapolis Guitar Quartet to Perform Works by Winners of the 2019 American Composers Forum Showcase

2019 ACF Showcase Winners

ST. PAUL, MN – Minneapolis Guitar Quartet, hailed by Classical Guitar Magazine as “Flawless, musical and witty, this quartet is able to do anything it sets its mind on,” partners with the American Composers Forum to present three works by the winners of the 2019 ACF Showcase national competition. Composers Clarice Assad (Chicago, IL), Paul Brantley […]

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Composer Abbie Betinis to write new ChoralQuest work in residence with MN, WA, and PA middle-level choirs

Download PDF of Press Release American Composers Forum (ACF) has selected Abbie Betinis as the 2019 ChoralQuest® composer. ChoralQuest, now in its ninth year, is a commissioning program designed to enhance mid-level choral repertoire with new works by notable composers. An award-winning composer, Betinis is known for her audacious vocal music often inspired by language, […]

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“My Brain Is a Definite Patchwork”: JFund Awardee Shelley Washington

Written by Michael Cyrs. On their 2015 album Dysnomia, Dawn of Midi created something for jazz, classical, and DIY fans alike. Simply arranged, the album never reaches outside its toolbox of piano, drums, and double bass. What makes it one of the most memorable jazz records of the decade, however, lies in its patchwork rhythms. […]

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Composers Selected for 2018 Minnesota Emerging Composer Award (MECA)

2018 MECA Artists

ST. PAUL, MN – The AmericanComposers Forum is pleased to announce the results of the Minnesota Emerging Composer Awards (MECA), supported with funds from the Jerome Foundation. Three area creative musicians have been selected to receive Minnesota Emerging Composer Awards (MECA). Each selected musician will receive $3,000 to pursue a new project that will help […]

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JFund Awardee Martin Nevin and the Inexpressible Merits of Solitude

Written by Michael J. Cyrs “Certain things for me are very hard to express with words,” explains JFund awardee and bassist Martin Nevin. His new record, Tenderness is Silent, deals with this problem. Apart from the classic jazz hall sound of the record, titles like “Grasp at Nothing” and “I See It Feelingly” are the […]

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Composers Selected for 2018 ACF | Create Program

2018 ACF Create Winners

SAINT PAUL, MN – The American Composers Forum is pleased to announce the results of the ACF | Create program (formerly JFund – Jerome Fund for New Music). With funding from the Jerome Foundation, the American Composers Forum now in its 40th year of commissioning and supporting the production of new works by early career composers […]

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Joel Mellin and the Intersection of Human Sensory Experience

Written by Michael J. Cyrs On Björk’s audiovisual LP Biophilia, the Icelandic singer wore numerous musical hats. Although the most notable takeaway from the record is her masterful voice, it’s often the expertise of her collaborators that drives the songs. Featuring everything from hang drum to full dubstep breakdowns, there seemed to be no musical […]

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Louisa Castner and Victor Zupanc Complete a Remarkable Residency

We are proud to share national recognition for Love Never Forgets, new choral music by Louisa Castner and Victor Zupanc, commissioned through an ACF community residency program in Minnesota. This 18-month project with Giving Voice and MacPhail Center for Music set out to boldly defy conventional wisdom that people with Alzheimer’s can’t learn new things, […]

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BandQuest New Release: Pop! by Tawnie Olson

We are thrilled to announce our newest addition to BandQuest®, our music series for middle-level band: Grade 3 Pop! by Tawnie Olson!   “Pop! is a delightful musical journey for the players and the audience. This artistically constructed exercise in acceleration, tension, crescendo and their oppositional counterparts begins with melodic fragments that gradually combine to reveal the […]

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Metal Aether by JFund Awardee Lea Bertucci Is One of the Most Compelling Experimental Records of the Year

Lea Bertucci (Queens, NY)

by Michael J. Cyrs The setting: A concrete WWII-era bunker. The studio: Abandoned corridors of metal and empty space. The instrument: An old silver alto saxophone. These aren’t the average constraints you’d encounter when recording music, but JFund awardee Lea Bertucci isn’t an average composer. “I am more interested in creating architecture and physical spaces […]

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2018 McKnight Composer Fellows and McKnight Visiting Composers Announced

The American Composers Forum (ACF) today announced the recipients of this year’s McKnight Fellowships for Composers, funded by the McKnight Foundation. These awards, which include $25,000 in unrestricted funds for each recipient, acknowledge excellence in the field of music composition. The four fellows were chosen from a pool of 50 applicants. In another McKnight funded […]

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BandQuest’s Upcoming World Premiere of Pop! by Tawnie Olson

While the school year kicks into overdrive with end-of-year activities, students in Susan Oakley’s band class will have a rare opportunity: they will perform the world-premiere performance of a new work by composer Tawnie Olson. The piece, Pop!, was commissioned by the American Composers Forum as part of their BandQuest® series. The series is designed to […]

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Winners of the NextNotes High School Composition Awards Nominate Educators for Recognition

The American Composers Forum, in partnership with MakeMusic®, is proud to acknowledge the influential teachers of the 2018 NextNotes® High School Composition Awards winners. NextNotes is a national program designed to nurture the next generation of creative voices in music composition regardless of musical style. The following winners were selected for their compositional skills and […]

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Composer Spotlight: Louisa Castner & Victor Zupanc Create “Love Never Forgets”

A jubilant celebration of the power of singing together, “Love Never Forgets” illustrates that life with Alzheimer’s can include personal creativity and contribution to community. This inspiring world premiere concert features the first-ever choral work illuminating life with Alzheimer’s – written with and performed by people with the disease and their caregivers. They share their […]

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JFund Awardee Leaha Maria Villareal on Collaborative Relationships

Written by Michael Cyrs. There are perks to playing music as a group. On top of taking cues and performing, you learn fundamental relationship lessons. Remember how you’d sulk about how horrible your college roommate was at doing the dishes, only to realize later on that you hadn’t once cleaned the bathroom the whole time […]

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American Composers Forum Announces Winners of the NextNotes High School Composition Awards

The American Composers Forum (ACF) is thrilled to announce the winners of the fourth annual NextNotes® High School Composition Awards. NextNotes is a national program designed to nurture the next generation of creative voices in music composition regardless of musical style. Awards encourage and recognize the creative and talented composers with mentorship, scholarship funds, and […]

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Jelloslave (aka Purple Orange) to Perform Works by Winners of the 2018 American Composers Forum Showcase

2018 ACF Showcase Winners

Jelloslave (aka Purple Orange), hailed by Rebecca Lang of the Star Tribune as “…an infectious, mysterious melee of genres.” partners with the American Composers Forum to present three works by the winners of the 2018 ACF Showcase national competition on Saturday, June 2 at the Open Eye Figure Theatre in Minneapolis, MN. Composers Robin Holcomb (Seattle, […]

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JFund Awardee Joseph C. Phillips and Genre Fluidity

Written by Michael J. Cyrs. “America is a great place. But it’s also not so great. You can have those two happen at the same time, and that’s a beautiful thing,” says 2016 JFund awardee Joseph C. Phillips as he walks his Alaskan Malamute through Brooklyn’s Prospect Park. He doesn’t compose for his Numinous project […]

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Congratulations to BandQuest & ChoralQuest Curriculum Writer Joanna Cortright!

  Our sincerest congratulations goes out to Joanna Cortright who is being inducted into the Minnesota Music Educators Association Hall of Fame for her significant career contributions to music education in Minnesota and beyond! Joanna is a founding consultant and curriculum writer for our BandQuest and ChoralQuest programs, and we’re incredibly grateful for her years […]

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