BMI Celebrates 2001 Student Composer Award-Winners



Winners of the 2001 BMI Student Composer Awards with BMI President Frances Preston and composer Milton Babbitt, Chairman of the Awards
Photo by Gary Gershoff, courtesy of BMI

Nine young composers, ranging in age from 15 to 26, have been named winners in the 49th Annual BMI Student Composer Awards. They were recognized for “superior creative talent” and received scholarships to be applied toward their musical education. Frances W. Preston, BMI President and CEO, presented the awards on June 15 at a reception in New York City’s Plaza Hotel. Milton Babbitt, Chairman of the Awards, introduced the winners:

Judah E. Adashi (age 25, studies at the Peabody Conservatory of Music) for Suite: Eight Haiku by Richard Wright, scored for marimba and violin

Christopher Ariza (age 24, studies at New York University) for holy the bop apocalypse, scored for tenor saxophone, bass clarinet, percussion, piano, and double bass

Félix Frédéric Baril (age 21, studies at Montréal University) for Symphonie Spectrale, scored for orchestra

Anthony Barrese (age 26, studies composition privately in Boston) for Mobile Cluster Study N. 1, scored for 12 violins

Christopher J. Fisher-Lochhead (age 17, studies composition privately in New York City) for Riesenfalter, scored for flute, clarinet, violin, cello, and piano

Eric Peter Froeberg (age 20, studies at the University of Southern California) for Perdita and Florizel, scored for flute, alto saxophone, violin, cello, and piano

Vivian Fung (age 26, studies at the Juilliard School) for Three Love Songs, scored for soprano and orchestra

Marcus Macauley (age 15, studies composition privately in Seattle) for Night Meditation, scored for cello and piano

Jonathan Arthur Saggau (age 22, studies at Iowa State University) for Now I am Become Death, Destroyer of Worlds, scored for orchestra

The winning manuscripts, selected from more than 450 entries, were displayed at the reception following the awards presentation. Cash awards to the composers totaled $20,000.

In addition, two new BMI Foundation commissioning projects were announced that evening. Kevin Puts is the recipient of the first BMI Foundation/Carlos Surinach Fund Commission, to be premiered by the American Composers Orchestra in April of 2002, and DJ Sparr has received the first BMI Foundation/Boudleaux Bryant Fund Commission for the new music ensemble eighth blackbird.

Also that evening Félix Frédéric Baril was awarded the 2001 William Schuman Prize, which recognizes the score judged “most outstanding” in the competition. This special prize is given each year in memory of the late William Schuman, who served for 40 years as Chairman, then Chairman Emeritus, of the BMI Student Composer Awards. In addition, two Carlos Surinach Prizes, underwritten by the special fund, were awarded to the two youngest winners, Christopher J. Fisher-Lochhead and Marcus Macauley.

The jury for this year’s competition included William Bolcom, Ingram Marshall, David Alan Miller, Joseph Schwantner and José Serebrier. BMI has given 459 scholarship grants to young composers since 1951, and eleven former winners have gone on to win the Pulitzer Prize in music. The competition is co-sponsored by BMI and the BMI Foundation.