Student Accomplishments

Western Michigan University's music composition program has a long history of student accomplishments. Students have had success in composition competitions, adjudicated conference and festival participation, and summer programs. Additionally, students seeking graduate study have traditional been successful at top institutions, often with graduate assistantships. Below is a recent list of our student accomplishments.

2015

Zachary Ploeger's work Galactic Voyage received an honorable mention in the student chamber music division for the American Prize. 

Dougls Osmun attended the 2015 highSCORE festival in Pavia, Italy. As part of this competitive Festival, Douglas had a new piece for acoustic guitar quartet performed.

Nathan Haering was selected for the Emerging Composers Concert at the 2015 Root Signals Electronic Music Festival in Jacksonville, FL.

Nathan Haering's work "Breath" was selected for the 2015 Electronic Music Midwest Festival.

Eric Hester was awarded the 2014-2015 Franklin G Fisk Composition Award for Chamber Music for his string quartet, “Grapeshot.”

Kevin Kerr was awarded the 2015 Composition Award for Large Ensemble. He will be composing a new work for the University Symphonic Orchestra to premiere in spring of 2016.

Three student composers collaborated with Emmy Award-winner Vanessa Vo on new works for traditional Vietnamese instruments: Matthew Fountain, Nathan Haering, and Eric Hester. Vo performed two of these works as part of the Bullock Performance Institute in February 2015 and continues to collaborate with the third student in preparation for upcoming performances.

Douglas Osmun became the Region V Student Representative for the Society of Composers, Inc in 2015.

Bernard Walasavage’s piece for brass quintet, “The Grind,” was published in the PARMA Anthology of Music by Parma Recordings.

Douglas Osmun was commissioned by American Road Magazine to compose music for their podcast.

Neal Endicott had two pieces, “Harlequin” and “Boketto” chosen for performance by Ensemble ConTempora in Skopje, Macedonia in Summer 2015.Zachary Ploeger was a semi-finalist in the student chamber music division of the American Prize for his woodwind quintet, “Galactic Voyage.”

Evan Hass’s work for trombone choir was selected for performance at the July 2015 Third Coast Trombone Retreat in Montague, MI.

Eric Hester presented "Accessibility, Flexibility, and Effectiveness: Applying Matthew Shaftel's Analytical Methodology to Alban Berg's Wozzeck" at the Texas Society for Music Theory Conference.
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Eric Hester’s work “Perplexed Music” was performed for the SMVMA District Choral Festival at Grand Haven High School. The choir, the Reeths-Puffer Madrigals, were one of five choirs to receive an excellent rating with superior distinction.

Neal Endicott was asked to write for flute and bass duo Extreme Duality. The new work will premiere at a May 14, 2015 performance on Mackinac Island.

Eric Hester participated with a poster presentation on “Accessibility, Flexibility, and Effectiveness: Applying Dr. Matthew Shaftel’s Analytical Method to Alban Berg’s Wozzeck” at the Texas Society for Music Theory Conference.

Douglas Osmun was an Adjudicator for the SCI Region V Student Mixtape.

Douglas Osmun was one of thee founders of the Audio Engineering Society of WMU Chapter (he is serving as Secretary for 2015).

Neal Endicott had a performance of a new commission titled “Lux Liquida” performed by the Traverse City East Middle School Symphony Band in June, 2014

Douglas Osmun’s “Resonant Forms” was premiered in February, 2015 by the University Symphonic Band at Miller Auditorium. Osmun was commissioned as the 2015 Ron Nelson Award Winner.

 

2014

Doug Williams was accepted as a participant in the Fresh Inc. summer festival.

Matthew Fountain's work "Expedition" was performed by the Parchment High School Symphonic Band.

Bernie Walasavage received a performance of has woodwind quintet by Gale Force 5 at the University of Massachusetts.

Andrew Maxbauer was accepted to the 2014 Society for Composers Inc. Region V Conference with his piece, "For Piano."

Matthew Fountain was accepted to the 2014 Society for Composers Inc. Region V Conference with his piece, "Disorders."
John Joseph Treadway was accepted to the 2014 Society for Composers Inc. Region V Conference with his piece, "Jungian Cognition."

Eliot Hedeman was accepted to the 2014 Society for Composers Inc. Region V Conference with his piece, "Time Changes."

Andrew Maxbuaer was accepted to the 2014 Society for Composers Inc. Region VIII Conference with his piece, "For Piano."

Robert Squiers orchestra work "Andromeda" was performed by the Albion College Orchestra under the direction of Dr. James Ball.

Irving Angulo's work "Sublimate" for fixed media is one of four finalists for the Allen Strange Award, which is "an annual award to celebrate the best undergraduate or high school electro-acoustic composition." The award is administered by the Society for Electro-acoustic Music in the United States.

Adam Lenz’s work "Sloth" for violin and audiovisual media was selected for presentation at the Ammerman Center for Arts and Technology at Connecticut College as a part of the 14th Biennial Symposium for Arts and Technology in New London, Conn.

Neal Endicott’s "Come Slowly, Eden" was selected for Vox Novus’ Fifteen Minutes of Fame for Javier Perez Garrido’s concert in February 2014 at Conservatorio Profesional de Musica de Cartagena (Murcia), Spain.

2013

Bernie Walasavage’s "Vine No. 1 for Chamber Orchestra" was performed by the Vine Orchestra in December 2013.

Valeria Jonard's work "Envy" for violin and interactive audiovisual media was accepted to Electroacoustic Barn Dance, an adjudicated national conference.

David Fisher's work "Salience" for fixed media was accepted to Electroacoustic Barn Dance, an adjudicated national conference.

Adam Lenz’s "L'évadé" was performed by percussionist Peter Breithaupt on a concert in conjunction with Ensemble Kalamazoo at the First United Methodist Church in Kalamazoo, Mich., in November 2013.

Eliot Hedeman’s work "Time Changes" was selected for performance as part of the Electronic Music Midwest Festival, a national adjudicated conference, in Kansas City, Kan., in October 2013.

Adam Lenz’s "Sloth" for violin and audiovisual media was selected for performance at the 2013 Electronic Music Midwest Festival, a national adjudicated conference, in Kansas City, Kan., in October 2013.

Adam Lenz’s "Morelia Piece" was selected for inclusion in the Closet Music Travel Pack being produced in London, UK, in September 2013.

Adam Lenz was in residency as a participant in the Watermill International Summer program in Watermill, N.Y., in July and August of 2013

Brian Ritzer’s wind ensemble work was performed by the Kalamazoo Central High School in May 2013.

Ensamble Liminar chose "Viento Agua Piedra" by Valeria Jonard from an international call to be performed in their 2013 season.

David Fisher's work "Non-Fundamental Forces" was selected as the winner of the 2012-13 Franklin G. Fisk Composition Award for Chamber Music.

2012

Valeria Jonard's work "Broken Harp" for comb and interactive electronics was selected for Electronic Music Midwest Festival, an adjudicated national conference, in Joliet, Ill., in October 2012.

Andrew Maxbuaer was an auditor at the 2012 June in Buffalo summer festival.

Pianist and composer Cassandra Kaczor performed work by WMU composers on a tour that included performances at Kent State University, Kalamazoo College, and WMU.

Andrew Maxbuaer work "Quartet" was selected for the 2012 Society for Composers Inc. National Student Conference at Capitol University in Ohio.

Valeria Jonard was selected as the winner of the 2012 Ron Nelson Award for restful music and her work "El Letargo De Las Ballenas" (The Whale’s Lethargy) was performed by the WMU symphony orchestra.