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History of Composition Workshop

Image from 2013 Composition Workshop, closing concert.

Conservatory of Music and Dance at the University of Missouri-Kansas City (2010-present): Designed and founded by Mara Gibson, the UMKC Summer Composition Workshop invites composers of all levels (advanced high school students through graduate level) to broaden horizons and hone their craft through this mix of classes and small group sessions with UMKC composition faculty. Participants in the standard track will have their compositions critiqued and discussed with distinguished faculty, allowing each composer to grow artistically while creating new music.  Focus on pedagogy and improvisation are available for advanced composers.  Innovative programming includes performances by resident performers and ensembles.

In 2011, the Workshop began an exchange with the Thailand International Composition Festival (TICF) when two UMKC students attended TICF and two TICF students attended the UMKC Composition Workshop.  In 2012, four attended each program.  In 2013-15, the exchange continued with four students in exchange, and offered a new option for credit.

2017: Featuring faculty Mara Gibson, James Mobberley, Paul Rudy, Narong Prangcharoen and Ingrid Stolzel with resident musicians Michael Hall, Megan Ihnen, Martha Morris Muehleisen and Holly Roadfeldt. 2017 postcard here

2016: Featuring faculty Chris Biggs, Mara Gibson, James Mobberley and Paul Rudy with resident musicians Michael Hall, Megan Ihnen, Robert Pherigo and newEar Contemporary Ensemble.  2016 postcard here. 

2015: Continued commissioning program with newEar and hosted Michael Hall and Zach Shemon as resident musicians with faculty Mara Gibson, James Mobberley and Paul Rudy.  2015 postcard here. enrollment: 26.

2014: New commissioning program established with newEar.  Resident musicians: newEar and Michael Hall.  Faculty composers: Mara Gibson, James Mobberley, Paul Rudy. 2014 postcard here. enrollment: 22.

2013: Resident musicians include newEar and violist, Michael Hall.  Faculty composers: Mara Gibson, James Mobberley, Paul Rudy.  Began three distinct tracks (standard, improvisation and pedagogy), enrollment: 40. Press: I Care If You Listen review.

2012: newEar Contemporary Chamber Ensemble became a resident ensemble for the workshop.  Faculty included: Matthew Burtner, Mara Gibson, James Mobberley and Chen Yi, enrollment: 35.

2011: Expanded to include undergraduate composers.  Faculty included: Mara Gibson, James Mobberley, Paul Rudy, Zhou Long. Began TICF exchange program, enrollment: 20.

2010: Began workshop for local and regional high school composers, half-day intensive weeklong workshop. Resident ensemble comprised of UMKC Conservatory graduate students.  Faculty: Mara Gibson, enrollment: 10.