Chelsea Komschlies, 2020-21
Chelsea Komschlies’ music has been said to possess an “ingratiating allure” (San Diego Story). Ms. Komschlies (b. 1991, Appleton, WI) is pursuing her Ph.D. in composition with Jean Lesage at the Schulich School of Music of McGill University. Previously she studied with David Ludwig and Richard Danielpour at the Curtis Institute of Music, where she was awarded the Alfredo Casella Award for composition, and with Dan Kellogg and Carter Pann at the University of Colorado at Boulder, where she was awarded the Thurston Manning Composition Award and Cecil Effinger Fellowship in Composition. Her work springs from spontaneous subconscious mental imagery, and one of her goals is that listeners make deep, instinctual associations with her music, be they emotional, visual, or otherwise abstract.
Ms. Komschlies has been programmed by Alarm Will Sound, Choral Arts Philadelphia, and the Fifth House Ensemble, and by presenters such as Codes d’accèss (Montreal), Le Vivier (Montreal), CAMARADA (San Diego), the Philadelphia Bach Festival, and Make Music Chicago. She has received fellowships from the Aspen Music Festival, where she was the first woman ever to win the Hermitage Prize, the Fontainebleau School where Nadia Boulanger once taught, Copland House’s CULTIVATE, and several other festivals in the U.S. and abroad.
Philippe Macnab-Séguin, 2018-19
Philippe Macnab-Séguin (b. 1992, Montreal) is a composer and researcher currently pursuing his D.Mus in composition at McGill University. His compositional work aims to create a new musical language at the crossroads of popular musics (especially jazz, metal, funk and electronic music) and contemporary classical music. His background reflects these diverse stylistic influences: after having played, written and recorded punk, ska, metal, pop and electronic music from a young age, Philippe pursued a DEC in jazz guitar at Vanier College, followed by studies in classical composition at McGill University (B.Mus 2015, M.Mus 2017).
His research focuses on cross-stylistic applications of Aural Sonology, a method of analysis developed by Lasse Thoresen which aims to describe, transcribe, and analyze one’s perception of music without the use of a notated score, and which focuses on aspects of music often left out by traditional music theory, such as timbre, texture, and energetic tendencies. Philippe regularly organizes workshops directly applying Aural Sonology to composition and improvisation.
His compositional work and his research have been supported by, among others, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) and the Fonds de Recherche Société et Culture Québec (FRQSC), and his compositions have earned him numerous awards, including three SOCAN young composer awards (2015, 2018), a BMI student composer award (2012), and the inaugural Robert Jones award for music Composition (2012).
Kit Soden, 2017-18
Kit Vaughan Soden is a composer, researcher, and music educator based in Montreal, QC, Canada.
He is currently pursuing a PhD in composition at McGill University, studying with John Rea, Philippe Leroux, and Stephen McAdams.
He is a student member of the Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Music Media and Technology (CIRMMT) and the Music Perception and Cognition Lab (MPCL). Kit is currently working as a research assistant for the Haute École de musique de Genève (HEM) as part of the International Analysis, Creation and Teaching of Orchestration Project. His recent compositions commissions include a choral piece for the Schulich Singers and a monodrama for the Opera from Scratch workshop in Halifax. He is currently composing a short opera for three voices and chamber ensemble for FAWN Chamber Creative in Toronto, Canada.
As a composer, Kit is inspired by the interaction and relationship between timbre and expressivity in music, and particularly in the use of orchestration to enhance the dramaturgy of a composition.
His doctoral thesis and research creation project(s) will identity and explore the acoustic phenomena created through the combination of voice and orchestra, highlighting how composers can exploit our innate perceptual mapping of vocal and instrumental timbres to build dramatic and expressive qualities into their music. These topics represent some of the composition and research considerations that fuel his passion for learning and for exploring composition at an advanced level.
Takuto Fukuda, 2016-17
Takuto Fukuda is a composer, sound artist and gestural controller performer.
How can music alleviate the intercultural collisions today? This question awakened him to the social significance of the concert, which provides a shared musical experience to all audience members regardless of race, religion and nationality. In hopes of attracting more people to the concert, he has been researching the enhancement of liveness — what makes music live such as spontaneity, cor- poreality and interactivity. His approaches encompass, among others, gestural control of music, interactive audiovisual installations, and Game Pieces.
His pieces have been prized at several competitions such as Andrew Svoboda Memorial Prize (Canada), Musica Nova 2010 (Czech) and Musicacoustica Beijing 2014 (China), selected for performance at numer- ous music festivals in Europe, Asia, and North and South America such as Ars Electronica (Austria), ISCM World Music Days 2016 (Korea) and New Music Edmonton (Canada), and performed at prestigious institutes such as IRCAM (France), ZKM (Germany), ina-GRM (France), and CCRMA (USA).
He is currently pursuing a D.Mus in composition at the Schulich School of Music.
Moe Touizrar, 2015-16
Moe Touizrar is a composer, interdisciplinary scholar, and concert organizer, whose music and research converge on two broad areas — the perception of timbre and the study of musical meaning.
In 2016 Moe won the inaugural Andrew Svoboda Memorial Prize in Orchestral Composition. In addition to writing music, Moe is an active researcher and lecturer who presents regularly on topics related to the intersection between philosophical and perceptual considerations in music.
He has been invited to present lectures at the Swiss Centre for Affective Sciences, the University of Jyväskjlä, the University of Helsinki, and at the XIVth Congress of Musical Signification, in Cluj-Napoca, Romania.
His research has been supported by, among others, The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Music, Media, and Technology (CIRMMT), and the Music Perception and Cognition Lab (MPCL) at McGill University. He is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Composition and Music Perception at the Schulich School of Music, McGill University under the co-supervision of composer John Rea and experimental psychologist Stephen McAdams.