Composition News

Donald Crockett, Thornton alumni featured at Caramoor

April 24, 2017

USC Thornton Composition chair Donald Crockett recently visited the Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts in Katonah, New York, where the Argus Quartet is preparing his commissioned string quartet for its July premiere. Thornton alumni and faculty feature prominently throughout the Center’s spring and summer seasons. The Los Angeles-based Argus Quartet, which features alumni […]


Pacific Symphony performance with Peter Boyer to be broadcast on PBS

April 10, 2017

Ellis Island: The Dream of America, a multimedia orchestral work by composer and USC Thornton alumnus Peter Boyer (GCRT ’96, SMPTV) was the centerpiece of the Pacific Symphony’s recent American Composers Festival from April 6-8. Conducted by music director and USC Thornton faculty member Carl St.Clair, the GRAMMY-nominated piece incorporates narration and projected imagery to […]


Composition grad student Peter Shin awarded Fulbright

April 4, 2017

Peter Shin, a master’s student in the USC Thornton Composition program, was recently awarded a Fulbright Scholarship that will allow him to travel to South Korea to study local musical forms. In the process, he plans to create new orchestral compositions that will draw on his Korean research. This summer, Shin will join professor emeritus […]


Compositions students, alums shine in ASCAP Foundation awards

April 3, 2017

USC Thornton Composition students and alumni comprised six of the nineteen recipients of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) Foundation 2017 Morton Gould Young Composer Awards, which were announced March 30. The winners include Composition doctoral candidate Julia Adolphe (MM ’12), graduate student Tommy Dougherty, and Composition alumni Saad Haddad (BM ’14), […]


Thomas Kotcheff and the Argus Quartet team for music video

March 31, 2017

Thomas Kotcheff (MM ’12, composition), a doctoral candidate in the USC Thornton Composition program, recently collaborated with the Argus Quartet to create a music video of his work, scratch cradle. The quartet, which includes alumni violinists Jason Issokson (MM’10) and Clara Kim (DMA ’15), along with violist Dana Kelley and cellist Joann Whang, originally commissioned […]


Julia Adolphe premieres new work with LACO

March 21, 2017

Julia Adolphe (MM ’12, composition), a doctoral candidate in the USC Thornton Composition program, premiered a new work with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra (LACO) last week as part of the ensemble’s Sound Investment commission series. The 13-minute piece, Shiver and Bloom, which the Los Angeles Times described “beautifully scored,” was conducted by LACO music […]


Juan Pablo Contreras receives the 2017 Presser Graduate Award

February 23, 2017

Juan Pablo Contreras, a doctoral candidate in the USC Thornton Composition program, has received the 2017 Presser Graduate Award, which honors exceptional graduate students who have the potential to make a distinguished contribution within the field of music. Composition program chair Donald Crockett said that Contreras has been granted a “wonderful and rare opportunity,” through […]


Alumnus Mark Robson’s Piano Spheres performance praised by the L.A. Times

February 8, 2017

Pianist and USC Thornton alumnus Mark Robson (MM ’89) presented an adventurous program as part of REDCAT’s Piano Spheres series at REDCAT last month, featuring works by Stockhausen, Glass, and Rihm. Robson also premiered new work by the Los Angeles composer Daniel Rothman. Mark Swed of the Los Angeles Times described Robson’s Piano Spheres performance […]


Faculty and students honored at the 2016 ASCAP Foundation Awards

January 24, 2017

Last month, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) awarded several USC Thornton faculty, students, and alumni at the 2016 ASCAP Foundation Honors event in New York City. Distinguished Professor of Composition Morten Lauridsen was presented with the Life in Music Award. Thornton Composition alumnus Daniel Allas (’15) and graduate students Tommy Dougherty, […]


The New York Times calls “Play” by Andrew Norman “a revolution in music”

January 20, 2017

Play, a 47-minute orchestral work by celebrated composer and USC Thornton faculty member Andrew Norman (’02, MM ’04), was the subject of “Andrew Norman’s ‘Play,’ a Symphony That Levels Up,” an article in the January 16 issue of The New York Times. Music critic David Allen wrote admiringly of Norman’s “wizardry” and “achievement”, calling his […]


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