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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January Composer Meet-Ups in the Bay Area

In keeping with our mission to nurture the creative spirit of composers and communities, ACF is pleased to launch a new Composer Residency for the Bay Area, in partnership with the Center for New Music in San Francisco. More details below. In advance of this new program, ACF staff be in town to host two FREE […]

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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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New ChoralQuest Release: Somos los dueños by Judd Greenstein

We are thrilled to announce our newest addition to ChoralQuest®, our music series for middle-level choir: Somos los dueños by Judd Greenstein. “Judd Greenstein is one of America’s freshest new voices in choral music. What a joy for any young singer to be exposed to his work early in their choral journey. Through an infectious rhythmic ostinato and simple vocal […]

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Vanessa Rose Appointed as American Composers Forum President and CEO

For Immediate Release: October 30, 2018 Press Contacts: Bonnie Marshall, Vice President of Development 651.251.2822 bmarshall@composersforum.org John Nuechterlein, Current President & CEO 651.251.2811 jnuechterlein@composersforum.org ST. PAUL, MN: American Composers Forum Board Chair Anne LeBaron today announced the appointment of Vanessa Rose as ACF’s new President and CEO, effective January 1, 2019. Rose currently serves as […]

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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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Member Spotlight: Celebrating a Kalo Taxidi (Good Journey)

Dr. Christos J. Granias remarks early in the conversation, “I’m a glass half full kind of person.” Composer, educator, humorist, and longtime ACF member, Granias has been living with multiple sclerosis (MS) since the 1990’s, and he sees it as part of life’s journey. This month, as Granias focuses his creative talents on raising money […]

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Seven Emerging Composers Chosen for 2019 Minnesota Orchestra Composer Institute

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 January 14 to 18, 2019, culminating in a Minnesota Orchestra concert conducted by Osmo Vänskä. Seven emerging composers have been selected as participants in the Minnesota Orchestra’s16th annual […]

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Kashimana Ahua Chosen as Composer-in-Residence for In Common, Willmar, MN

The American Composers Forum (ACF) is thrilled to announce that Kashimana Ahua has been selected as composer-in-residence for In Common, a year-long community songwriting project in Willmar, funded by the Otto Bremer Trust. Through the creation and performance of new songs, the project aims to bridge cultural differences and share the stories of the diverse […]

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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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Adam Vidiksis Reflects on the First Year of the Steven R. Gerber Residency Program with ACF-Philly and The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia

Last year, ACF-Philadelphia partnered with The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia (COP) for a three-year initiative: The Steven R. Gerber Residency Program. Each year, one composer is selected to work with COP and compose a new piece specifically for the chamber orchestra, all while participating in other residency activities during COP’s full season. The composer selected […]

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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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John Nuechterlein to Retire as President & CEO of American Composers Forum

John Nuechterlein has announced that he will retire as President/CEO of the American Composers Forum effective December 31, 2018. He shared the news recently with Forum board and staff, noting the decision to move on came slowly over the past few months. “The Forum is an extraordinary ecosystem of creative, imaginative people,” Nuechterlein says. “I feel privileged to have […]

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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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