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Composer's Workshop was a success for student composers

Student composers took to the Snyder Recital Hall stage to perform their original works during the Composer's Workshop performance. (ONU Music Department photo/Communications & Marketing)

Student composers took to the Snyder Recital Hall stage to perform their original works during the Composer's Workshop performance. (ONU Music Department photo/Communications & Marketing)

On April 22, Ohio Northern University's young musicians composed their future pieces in a presentation to an audience at the Composer's Workshop. From electronic music to a trio of three instruments, the composers prepared music that kept the audience interested and hoping to hear more. Music students gathered together to either perform or witness their pieces being performed by others in front of an audience. 

John Wey, Lecturer of Music for Ohio Northern University and organizer of the Composer’s Workshop, talked about what the event was and why it is important to music students at Ohio Northern.

“It’s an exciting and essential part of their education and experience. They not only get to write the music, but they get to work with performers and have their work performed. So there is a lot that goes into it. There is a whole rehearsal process where they learn some really wonderful skills that may be applicable in the real world,” said Wey.

This unique concert allows students in the department that are interested in composing their own pieces the opportunity for a live audience to listen and interpret their work. Not only do the students hear their work performed, but they work with their peers and classmates to have them perform the compositions. According to Wey, this enhances the students' learning process and allows them to obtain skills that will allow them to work efficiently in their field of study following college.

Cheyenne Rogers, a freshmen piano performance major, talked about her experience as a composer in the Composer’s Workshop.

“In a way, writing music is like baring my soul to the paper, and, eventually, to my audience.  It is a very cathartic experience, but also a constant challenge. Composing has slowly become a huge part of my life, but now I wouldn't want to imagine it any other way,” expressed Rogers.

The composers included Elizabeth Druesedow, Christopher Gray, Adam Lookadoo, Jacob Novak, and Cheyenne Rogers. The pieces performed included electronic music that told compelling stories, trios for instrumentalists, a piece that required the performer to play the piano and the clarinet simultaneously, and various other works.

Wey talked about what he hopes to see for the future of Composer’s Workshop.

Composer’s Workshop was a unique and interesting event that allowed composers to have an audience to show off their work. Within the next year, hopefully, there will be more of an audience to celebrate these composers' hard work and dedication. 

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