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2017 Summer Composition Intensive

Past Composer Faculty
Jay Batzner
David Biedenbender
Roshanne Etezady
David Gompper
Dorothy Hindman
Peter Hulen
Kristin Kuster
Hannah Lash
P.Q. Phan
Paul Salerni
Michael Schelle

Past Instrumental Faculty
Craig Hultgren, cello
Charles Lynch, harp
David Murray, bass
Tom Snydacker, saxophones

Resident Composer Faculty
Joshua Marquez
Zae Munn

The 2017 Summer Composition Intensive at Saint Mary's College
will be extended to 13 full days:

Monday July 10-Saturday July 22, 2017
Staffing is now confirmed!
Zae Munn and Joshua Marquez, Resident Composers
Ken Ueno and Marilyn Shrude, Guest Composers
Courtney Miller, Guest Instrumentalist (oboe and English horn)

2016 Summer Composition Intensive
at Saint Mary's College

Monday July 11-Friday July 22, 2016

Twelve days of presentations, workshops, and lessons for sixteen composers, age 18 and over. You will work intensively with four engaging and experienced composer-teachers and our guest cellist to develop new skills and expand old ones in a stimulating and supportive work environment. Topics will be wide-ranging and challenging, and related workshops will provide hands-on experiences appropriate for participants with a variety of backgrounds, including those with an interest in developing composition teaching materials. Participants typically have included highly motivated undergraduates, graduate students, early career instructors, and those returning to music after pursing other careers.


David Gompper
Guest Composer

Dorothy Hindman
Guest Composer

Craig Hultgren
Guest Cellist

Zae Munn

Director and Resident Composer
Contact Zae by email with questions about
the Summer Composition Intensive.

Joshua Marquez
Resident Composer
and Intensive Associate

• Composers Zae Munn and Joshua Marquez will be in residence throughout the Intensive.
• Composers Dorothy Hindman and David Gompper will each come for three days.
• Cellist Craig Hultgren will come on two separated days to talk about writing for cello, and to read, critique, and record short studies by participants.


The application period begins Jan. 1, 2016 and ends Mar. 1, 2016. The application consists of:

• Online application form
• 2 recent scores and audio files
• Email contact info for two recommenders

A sampling of topics in the works...

• Personalized spectralism
• Getting from Point A to Point B
• Moving beyond default meters
• Basic primer on string techniques
• Formal pacing

• Strings and the world of electronics
• New sounds through extended string techniques
• Composing without pitches
• Timbre to the fore
• Concept vs. perception

Reflections from Intensive alums:

• "The Intensive had an environment which encouraged experimentation without the pressure to write an entire new piece during our short time there. I was able to try out new things I would not have approached the same way on my own and came up with several ideas which blossomed into new pieces soon after leaving."
• "I thought the program stood out because of its emphasis on exercises that we do while we're
there, rather than prior works, and also because of the multitude of guest speakers."
• "The Intensive was simultaneously inspiring, productive and fun. Two weeks spent with such diversely talented companions and mentors reignite all sorts of creative sparks."
• "The most salient moments for me were my interactions with the guest composers (private lessons, workshops, dinners, etc.). The diversity of interactions one could have with the guest, ranging from very serious lessons to casual dinners, was refreshing and enlightening."
• "In retrospect, the greatest contribution that the Intensive has made to my writing process is a greater ability to be comfortable with remaining in the brainstorming stage of writing for a longer period of time than I was used to and accepting that part of the writing process as valuable, even if all of the ideas don’t become part of a finished piece."

The Summer Composition Intensive takes place at Saint Mary's College in the Moreau Center for the Arts, with meetings in the modern, air-conditioned Music Lab, Music Seminar Room, and faculty offices. 
• A typical day will include a morning presentation that leads into a workshop; lunch with participants and instructors; afternoon private lessons and workshop continuation; late afternoon master class based on workshop results; dinner; post-dinner presentations of compositions by participants and guests; off-campus activities.
Saint Mary's College is located in South Bend, Indiana, just off the I80/90 toll road, and easily accessible by car, Amtrak, Chicago South Shore train, and air.  By car, it is 1 1/2 hrs. from Chicago and Kalamazoo, and 3 hours from Indianapolis and Ann Arbor.
Check-in date will be Monday July 11, with instruction beginning that afternoon, so Sunday arrival is recommended. Check-out date will be Friday July 22, with instruction ending in the early afternoon, so departures that day are possible.
Instructional fee will be $525
All group lunches and one catered dinner off-campus $100
• 3 housing options:
    1) dorm, not air conditioned but deemed comfortable by participants    
        (ca. $25 per night); best option for those without a car
    2) neighborhood residences (ca. $125 total); good option if you have a
        car and/or willingness to walk 25 minutes each way
• Breakfast in the Dining Hall will cost approximately $5 and $10 for dinner. Lunches are with the group in the Dining Hall each day, but breakfasts and dinners can be elsewhere. Small groups often go to dinner at any of the several interesting, inexpensive restaurants in the area.