New Music Ensemble to perform Monday, December 6 at Whitmore Recital Hall

The Mizzou New Music Ensemble (pictured) will present their second performance of the 2010-11 season at 8:00 p.m. Monday, December 6 at Whitmore Recital Hall on the University of Missouri campus. If you’re in Columbia or anywhere nearby, you’re invited to attend the concert, which is free and open to the public.

The Ensemble is directed by Stefan Fruend, Associate Professor, Composition & Music Theory, and this season is their first full year of rehearsals and performances with a complete roster of musicians. All of us are delighted to have this talented group representing the Mizzou New Music Initiative, and we hope you’ll take this opportunity to get to know them a bit as individuals, too:

* Stephanie Berg, clarinet – Berg received her Bachelor of Music degree in clarinet performance from Mizzou in December 2008, and now is pursuing a Master’s degree in clarinet performance and composition. She also performs in the University Philharmonic, and is a member of the 9th Street Philharmonic and the Columbia Civic Orchestra, playing Bb, A, Eb, and bass clarinets wherever required.

Berg also is very active in music composition. This is her third year serving as the project manager of the Creating Original Music Program (C.O.M.P.), and she was the 2009 recipient of the Sinquefield Composition Prize, resulting in the commissioned work, “Motive and Reflection” for full orchestra. She also recently received a commission for the 9th Street Philharmonic; has had several works performed by the New Music Ensemble, including a premiere at the St. Louis Contemporary Art Museum; and was accepted to the Atlantic Music Festival Composition Program.

* Ian Derrickson, percussion – Derrickson currently is in his second year as a Master’s student at Mizzou. A native of Chillicothe, Missouri, he attended Missouri Western State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Music Education. During his time at Missouri Western, he received instruction from Dr. Dennis Rogers, Kevin Bobo, Tracy Thomas, and Doug Auwarter, and after graduation, he taught 5-12 instrumental music at Braymer High School in Braymer, Missouri.

In addition to performing with the New Music Ensemble, Derrickson currently is involved in the University of Missouri Percussion Department under the direction of Julia Gaines, and serves as president of the MU Percussion Society, a student organization that promotes percussion performance and education on the MU campus.

* Young Kim, flute – A native of South Korea who began her music studies in her home country, Kim won numerous awards and competitions there before going abroad to further her education.  She currently is studying with Steven Geibel at Mizzou and working toward a PhD in Musicology, which will be awarded upon her return home.

Kim also has studied in the UK for a postgraduate Diploma at Royal College of Music in London and for a Master of Music degree at Canterbury Christ Church University. In addition to performing in South Korea, the US and the UK, she has performed in China and Japan, too. Kim says she’s curious about American composers, and is eager to learn and perform contemporary music with the Ensemble.

* Matthew Pierce, cello – A native Minnesotan and a graduate of the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire, Pierce is a second-year graduate student in cello performance at Mizzou. He first performed in Columbia in 1998 as a member of the Missouri Symphony Society’s cello section. Later that year, he won a position with the Cedar Rapids Symphony (now known as Orchestra Iowa), but relocated to New England after two seasons to pursue further musical opportunities. While in Massachusetts, Pierce spent a combined 12 professional seasons as the principal cellist of the Plymouth Philharmonic and of the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra while also maintaining an active chamber music schedule and teaching private lessons.

He was also a frequent contributor to many other musical organizations across the region, including the Bangor Symphony Orchestra, the Cape Symphony, the Boston Philharmonic, and the Company Theatre. Pierce returned to Columbia in the fall of 2009 as a member of the newly formed New Music Ensemble. In addition to continuing his musical studies this fall, he also is expanding his ongoing research into the fundamental interconnections between emotion, instinct, and intelligence.

* David Snow, violin – Originally from Kansas City, Missouri, Snow is a first year masters student studying violin performance at Mizzou, He has played violin since childhood, and did his undergraduate studies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with Professor David Neely. While in Nebraska, Snow performed in many university ensembles as well as with the Lincoln Symphony Orchestra.

He began to explore 20th and 21st century music as a freshman at UNL with Dr. Randall Snyder, and since then, he’s been playing new compositions written by multiple student composers. Snow says he enjoys playing new music because of the challenges it holds for the performers, the listeners, and even the composers themselves.

* Renata Tavernard, piano – Born in Brazil, Tavernard currently is pursuing her M.M degree in piano performance at Mizzou, studying with Dr. Peter Miyamoto. She began her piano studies at eight years old with Lucia Uchoa at the Federal University of Pará Music School. In 2001, she was accepted to the Carlos Gomes Conservatory, and three years later earned her bachelor degree with Professor Gloria Caputo.

Tavernard has studied chamber music with Professor Marilia Caputo, and worked as a piano and chamber music teacher as well as accompanist at both the Federal State of Pará University and State University of Pará. In 2004, she formed the group “Duo Deno” with violinist Ronaldo Sarmanho, and she also has performed in the master classes of Daniel Schene, Gabriella Affonso, Harold Brown, Edson Elias, Ivani Venturieri, Fany Solter, and Ricardo Castro.

The Mizzou New Music Ensemble will be performing both on campus and in Columbia and surrounding communities a number of times during 2011. Stay tuned for more news of those future performances….

(Photo: The 2010-11 Mizzou New Music Ensemble (from left) –  Stefan Freund, Young Kim, David Snow, Renata Tavernard, Matthew Pierce, Ian Derrickson and Stephanie Berg. )