This past Saturday, we had a wonderful 2nd full day of our Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra Music Alive Composers Institute! Twelve composers from eight Midwest universities joined us for the Institute.
We had lots of activities: CUSO harpist Molly Madden and CUSO percussionists William Moersch and Ricardo Flores gave demonstrations on how to effectively write for their instruments within an orchestra setting; we had lunch with Maestro Stephen Alltop in which we discussed navigating the conductor-composer relationship; and we had a fantastic reading session of three new works by Midwest composers Stephen Caldwell, Brian James Hinkley, and Hunter Chang. Each of these three composers took part in a Q&A with me prior to the reading of their piece, as well as with our audience at the conclusion of the reading session.
Thank you to everyone who helped us put together the Composers Institute! This has been the highlight of my Composer-in-Residence activities with CUSO, and I am thrilled to help young composers as they go about crafting their careers.