JFund Awardee Brian Mark: Experience History As It Happens

by Michael Cyrs “I love the art of film music, but I’m not at all into defining labels when it comes to one being a concert or film composer,” explains JFund awardee Brian Mark about some of his recent work. Although he studied film extensively, he’s more of a historical realist. Mark wasn’t yet born […]

Continue Reading

Composer Judd Greenstein Commissioned to Write New Piece for Great Falls Middle School Choir

ACF is thrilled to announce that composer Judd Greenstein has been selected as the 2017-2018 ChoralQuest® composer. Greenstein will work with choir director Kayla Roth at Great Falls Middle School in Montague, MA. Great Falls was selected to host the residency due to its talented leadership and program excellence. Greenstein expressed, “I look forward to […]

Continue Reading

New BandQuest Release: Steps Ahead by Michael Gandolfi

We are thrilled to announce our newest addition to BandQuest®, our music series for middle-level band: Steps Ahead by Michael Gandolfi. “Steps Ahead is a delightful piece with something interesting for every instrument in the ensemble. Each of its three sections addresses a kind of compositional technique – transposition, tutti (a 2-part homophonic section) and developing tutti (parts […]

Continue Reading

New ChoralQuest Release: When I Sing by Rosephanye Powell

When I Sing by Rosephanye Powell for 3-part treble and piano with optional hand percussion We are thrilled to announce our newest addition to ChoralQuest®, our music series for middle-level choir: When I Sing by Rosephanye Powell. “Rosephayne Powell has done it again! Using an original text about the power of singing, this piece is […]

Continue Reading

M. Lamar: Bodylessness and History as Told through Genres

JFund Profile by Michael Cyrs “Genre-defying” and “experimental” are words that critics enjoy tossing around, especially when it comes to genre-mixing. However, in music, most genre-mixing is old news, and the terms only gesture at describing a diverse arrangement. Every once in awhile, though, someone earns the terms. M. Lamar’s records are shining examples that […]

Continue Reading

Asuka Kakitani Conquers the Impossible Task of Representing Nature in Jazz

by Michael Cyrs Reality is rarely compartmentalized into the rigid structure of a three-minute pop song. Recalling the full beauty of a painting or a landscape can’t be related without losing the finer details. Longer compositions, it seems, make for music that’s most representative of mother nature. Japanese-born, Minnesota-based composer Asuka Kakitani was on the […]

Continue Reading

“Getting to know you . . .”

Submitted by Louisa Castner and Victor Zupanc The Healing and Hope through Song community residency has officially begun! During the last two weeks of June, we spent time with the Giving Voice Choruses in Minneapolis and St. Paul. This has marked the beginning of our yearlong residency with GVC. Chorus co-founders Marge Ostroushko and Mary […]

Continue Reading

Aleksandr Brusentsev’s Quest to Explore Perspectives of Music and Art

Written by Michael Cyrs   Even if it’s with someone unquestionably genuine, verbal communication is difficult to recall. Although one may remember the words that were spoken, there were feelings, objects, weather, and countless other subatomic details that were simultaneously present during conversation. The same goes for life events. Say you lost a job or […]

Continue Reading

2017 McKnight Composer Fellows and Visiting Composers Announced

2017 McKnight Fellows and Visiting

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 55 applicants. In another McKnight funded […]

Continue Reading

Josh Hernandez-Camen’s Quest for Authenticity in Composition

A profile of a 2016 NextNotes finalist by Michael Cyrs A Google search of Ángel Jochi Hernandez-Camen (or Josh, as he prefers to be called) pulls up a small handful of sites. You’ll find a video of his masterful “Ancient Ruins,” a short bio from your esteemed Forum, and some scattered notes and performances. Go […]

Continue Reading

2017 NextNotes Showcase on June 24th 7:30pm at the Lab Theater

Facebook Event Page Join us for a night of new music by the winners of the NextNotes High School Composition Award program at the Lab Theater in Minneapolis, MN. Emceed by Tesfa Wondemagegnehu, you’ll get to know the future of new music and the young artists that create it. The diverse musical offerings will be […]

Continue Reading

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

The American Composers Forum (ACF), in partnership with MakeMusic®, is proud to acknowledge the influential teachers of the 2017 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 […]

Continue Reading

Healing & Hope Through Song Composer and Poet Announced

The American Composers Forum is pleased to announce a new community residency program with Giving Voice Chorus (GVC), Giving Voice Initiative (GVI), and the MacPhail Center for Music in Minneapolis. Composer Victor Zupanc and poet Louisa Castner will collaborate to create a new choral work to be premiered by GVC singers in spring 2018. This […]

Continue Reading

American Composers Forum and the Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble Announce Three Composers Selected for ACF CONNECT

ACF CONNECT Winners

Three composers have been selected as participants for the first annual ACF CONNECT program offered by the American Composers Forum (ACF) in partnership with the highly acclaimed Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble (PNME). Long recognized for its world-class performances and commitment to new work beyond the premiere, PNME is a perfect match for the ACF CONNECT […]

Continue Reading

Now Accepting Submissions for NextNotes Season Four!

ACF is thrilled to announce the 4th Annual NextNotes® High School Composition Awards! NextNotes is a national program designed to nurture the next generation of creative voices in music composition – in any genre! The NextNotes® High School Composition Awards encourage and recognize the creativity of high school composers and awards outstanding talent with mentorship, scholarship funds and a performance of […]

Continue Reading

Auburn Junior High Choir to Perform World Premiere of Choral Work by Composer Rosephanye Powell

While the school year kicks into overdrive with end-of-year activities, students in Teresa Rhyne’s select girls’ choral class will have a rare opportunity: they will perform the world-premiere performance of a new work by internationally known, local composer Rosephanye Powell. The piece, “When I Sing”, was written as the eighth piece for ChoralQuest®, a series […]

Continue Reading

Seven Composers Chosen for Minnesota Orchestra Composer Institute – 2017

1718 Minnesota Orchestra Composer Institute Participants

Composers will travel to Minneapolis for Orchestra’s acclaimed professional training program, directed by Pulitzer Prize-winner Kevin Puts and co-presented with the American Composers Forum Institute runs from November 6 to 10, 2017, highlighted by a Minnesota Orchestra concert conducted by Osmo Vänskä Seven emerging composers have been selected as participants in the Minnesota Orchestra’s 15th annual […]

Continue Reading

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

The American Composers Forum (ACF) is pleased to announce the winners of the third annual NextNotes®High School Composition Awards. NextNotes is a new, 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 […]

Continue Reading

World Premiere of “Still Standing”

ACF has been honored to partner with One Voice on the 2016-17 Healing & Hope Through Song program. This season’s collaborators were McKnight Fellow and acclaimed Minnesota composer George Maurer, National Poetry Slam Champion Sierra DeMulder, One Voice Mixed Chorus, and RECLAIM, an organization that works to increase access to mental and integrative health support so that queer […]

Continue Reading

ANCIA Saxophone Quartet to Perform Works by Winners of the 2017 ACF Showcase May 12, 2017  8 PM at the Weisman Art Museum

Facebook Event Page  SAINT PAUL, MN – ANCIA Saxophone Quartet, hailed by Eugene Rousseau, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Indiana University as an ensemble that “…performs with energy, precision, and a huge dynamic range in creating exquisite musical interpretations… four outstanding musicians whose presentations demonstrate the joy and power of music.” partners with the American Composers Forum […]

Continue Reading

Michael Gandolfi Announced as New BandQuest Composer

ACF is excited to announce that a new BandQuest® commission and partnership is beginning this month. Supported by a generous grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, composer Michael Gandolfi will be 2017 BandQuest composer, creating the 24th work in the series. Michael will partner with director Laura Bouix, of the Roland Hayes School […]

Continue Reading

Clara Latham: Singing about Talking

written by Tim Hansen In the 19th century, the Age of Enlightenment, there was a great leap forward in science and medicine; many of the standard practices that make up today’s medical professional’s tool kit originating in the days of Beethoven and Brahms. But scientific progress is not a highway, it’s a jumbled mess of […]

Continue Reading

Sean Harold: Unintentional Iconoclast

written by Tim Hansen In the email ping-pong prefacing this article, JFund awardee Sean Harold warned me that his biographies “tended to be heavy on the sarcasm and light on actual detail.” For example, one iteration of his biography began: “Initially trained as a jazz bassist and improviser, Sean Harold turned his attention to concert […]

Continue Reading

Looking Back: Ronald McDonald House Residency 2015-16

Composer Paul John Rudoi and poet Brian Laidlaw met weekly over dinner with the children and families at the Twin Cities Ronald McDonald House. Premiered by the Minnesota Boychoir in May 2016, their beautiful work “My Friends and I,” focuses on hope, friendship, love, and loss through the eyes of children. ACF: What was it like getting to know the kids at […]

Continue Reading

Yue Lor: A Disappearing History

written by Tim Hansen The Vietnam War. An international clash of ideologies fought in the theatre of a small southeast Asian country. And it sucked. For everyone. Scarcely a person alive in the US today could be ignorant of the misery thousands of young conscripts and their families endured at the behest of their own […]

Continue Reading

James Everest: The Natural Collaborator

written by Tim Hansen When JFund awardee James Everest was three years old, he composed a thunderstorm on his parents’ upright piano. He recalls the “crashing thunder on clusters of low keys, and sprinkling rain drops on individual high notes—with an arc of the storm building and dissipating over time.” And sure, while the actual […]

Continue Reading