WTAMU hosts Society of Composers

The Prairie.

The Prairie.

For the first time at WTAMU, the School of Music will be hosting the Society of Composers on Oct. 5-6.

“It’s a national organization that champions new music,” said B.J. Brooks, assistant professor of Music. “It’s divided regionally and we are part of region six.”

Region six includes Texas, Nebraska, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri.
“Every year there is a conference for each region where composers will submit their work and the hosting organization will go through the entries,” he said.

This year, WT received over 500 entries and from those, about 80 works were selected to be performed over the course of 10 concerts.

“Dr. Carolyn Bremer, Associate Department Chair of [the Bob Cole Conservatory of] Music at California State University, is the guest composer,” Brooks said. “She will be giving a lecture on her music on Friday.”

He said there would also be WT performers, students and faculty, ensembles and guest performers such as the Amarillo Master Chorale with Dr. Steven Webber.

“Oklahoma Panhandle State University will be associating with us to help perform some of the pieces,” said Brooks. “They’re bringing their choir and band to perform on campus on Saturday evening.”

Dr. Mark Bartley is thrilled that the WT School of Music is hosting the Society of Composers in its first year as a school.

“Its part of higher visibility in that designation that we will be hosting such a big event,” he said.

Bartley will be conducting the WT orchestra.

“Our concert has two parts,” he said. “The first half will have three pieces by three different composers that will be in the conference and we will have a lecture recital [in the second half.]”

Bartley said they have been practicing at the beginning of the semester and there are around 50 students in the orchestra.

“We always have a lot of recitals going on in the School of Music,” he said, “but this will probably put it on overdrive.”

Bartley said there will a concert going one after the other and they are providing as much opportunity for the composers to have their own music performed by a live group.

“I looked over all the orchestral pieces,” he said, “and it was a massive task because there were 60 different scores that I had to look through based on different criteria.”

The conference’s concerts are free and open to the public. To see the itinerary for the conference go the theprairienews.com.