Festival of Contemporary Music

featuring works by students from

The University of Missouri at Kansas City
The University of Iowa


Friday, March 26, 2010, 7:30 pm
Riverside Recital Hall


The Seven Seas (2009)   Stas OMELCHENKO (1982)
  Anna Draper, violin I
Preston Krauska, violin II
Diana Mayne, viola
Christina Craig, violoncello
Christine Gebler, double bass
...of the Saints (2009)   Aaron PERRINE (1979)
  Lisa Bost-Sandberg, flute  
Silent Sphere (2008)   Daniel EICHENBAUM (1977)
  Rolando Hernandez Gaitan, flute
Grethe Nothling, piano
This Is an Uncensored Cosmic Battering (2008)   Joshua A. HEY (1988)
  Jessica Altfillisch, viola  
John Frum Lives! (2009)   Brad BAUMGARDNER (1980)
  Rolando Hernandez Gaitan, flute
Angela Lickiss, oboe
Jamie Cox, clarinet
Jacqueline Wilson, bassoon
Evan Grulke, horn
  — Intermission —  
Twitch (2010)   Anthony DONOFRIO (1981)
  Rolando Hernandez Gaitan, flute
Jamie Cox, clarinet
Jacqueline Wilson, bassoon
Meghan Aube, marimba
Andrew Uhe, violin
Yoo-Jung Chang, violoncello
Trio (2008)   Nicholas S. OMICCIOLI (1982)
  Emily Rolka, violin
Yoo-Jung Chang, violoncello
Grethe Nothling, piano
Erosion (2010)   Matthew DOTSON (1981)
  Rolando Hernandez Gaitan, flute
Angela Lickiss, oboe
Jamie Cox, clarinet
Jacqueline Wilson, bassoon
Dan Spencer, horn
Pamela Schroeder, trumpet
Jessica DuCharme, trombone
Oliver Molina, percussion I
Jonathan Werth, percussion II
Louis Nortje, piano
Anna Draper, violin I
Emily Rolka, violin II
Jessica Altfillisch, viola
Yoo-Jung Chang, violoncello
Christine Gebler, double bass
David Gompper, conductor


Notes & Bios


The Seven Seas

The concept of The Seven Seas came along when a friend of mine jokingly asked me whether I knew the famous piano piece with the above title. Having replied that I did not, he then proceeded to play, from the lowest to the highest, all the C's of the piano. While I was pleasantly surprised by his joke, I was very much struck by how narrative our mind is; so narrative, in fact, that the very first images I had when hearing the title were not these of the actual notes (an abstract conception) but those of water, waves, and color blue.

In a similarly humorous way, I have decided to take the concept to its other extreme, basing the piece on an abstract conception. What follows is a fast-paced, episodic, textural, timbral, rhythmical, registral, and yes, even narrative exploration of these seas. As a tribute to my friend, I have decided to keep the narrative title.

Stas Omelchenko (b. 1982) has studied composition with David Gompper, Lawrence Fritts, Stacy Garrop, Kyong Mee Choi, Don Malone, Gyula Fekete, and John Eaton. Additional studies and master classes were with Marta Ptaszynska, Bernard Rands, and Mark-Anthony Turnage. He received his Bachelor of Music degree at the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University, and is currently working on his Master of Arts degree at the University of Iowa where he serves as a teaching assistant in music theory.


...of the Saints

The Avenue of the Saints is a 550 mile four-lane highway connecting Saint Paul, Minnesota, with Saint Louis, Missouri. It also happens to be the highway I commute on to Iowa City, each and every day. This past fall on my way in to school, I often noticed the same red, twin-engine airplane doing tricks and buzzing around over the fields. In ...of the Saints I tried to capture the sense of anticipation I felt when I was waiting for the plane to appear on the distance, the rush of excitement I experienced as it swooped overhead, and the feeling of inevitability, knowing I'd soon be past it, hoping to catch one more looking in the rear-view mirror.

Born in McGregor, Minnesota, Aaron Perrine earned his Bachelor's Degree in trombone performance with high distinction from the University of Minnesota, Morris, in 2002. In 2006, Aaron received his Master's Degree from the University of Minnesota in music education while studying composition with Judith Zaimont and jazz arranging with Dean Sorenson. Recently one of his compositions was a finalist in the Frank Ticheli Composition Contest. His music is published with C. Alan Publications.


Silent Sphere

This piece is about the transformation of astronauts from engineers to artists. It begins in a mechanical, cramped environment and opens into an organic, spacious vista. Astronauts spend many years preparing for a mission to space in a cramped vehicle only to be shown a view of unparalleled beauty. As numerous astronauts have reported, their training did not prepare them for the grand spectacle of the Earth seen from space. Charles Walker, American space shuttle astronaut, reported:

"My first view- a panorama of brilliant deep blue ocean, shot with shades of green and gray and white- was of atolls and clouds. Close to the window I could see that this Pacific scene in motion was rimmed by the great curved limb of the Earth. It had a thin halo of blue held close, and beyond, black space. I held my breath but something was missing- I felt strangely unfulfilled. Here was a tremendous visual spectacle, but viewed in silence. There was no grand musical accompaniment; no triumphant, inspired sonata or symphony. Each one of us must write the music of this sphere for ourselves."

Daniel Eichenbaum's (b. 1977) music has been performed and published throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. Recent commissions include Fading Light, a wind quintet commissioned by the Borealis Quintet and Orbit, an electroacoustic work commissioned by the Kansas City Electronic Music and Arts Alliance premiering in April, 2010. His music is published by Southern Music, Reynard Music, and Warwick Brass, and recorded on the Capstone Records label.

In addition to his creative output, Mr. Eichenbaum is a devoted teacher of composition and music theory. Since 2007, Mr. Eichenbaum has been a Fellow for the Composers in the Schools (CITS) program. CITS is an outreach program that places well-qualified music teachers in classrooms where they can inspire underserved Kansas City students. From 2005 - 2007 Mr. Eichenbaum was Instructor of Theory and Composition at Mahidol University, Thailand. In March of 2007, Mr. Eichenbaum spent a week in Myanmar giving masterclasses at the Gitameit Music Center and oversaw the premiere of his choir piece, To the Evening Star.

Joshua A. HEY

This Is an Uncensored Cosmic Battering

A short, virtuosic piece in which a brooding opening gives way to frenetic arpeggios and tremolos. The registeral transformation of the initial materials that ultimately closes the work is a direct consequence of its inner frenzy.

Joshua Andrew Hey, a native Kansas Citian, began studying piano at age ten. During his senior year in high school, he enrolled in composition and theory at theUniversity of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC). He currently attends the Conservatory of Music and Dance at the UMKC on scholarship. Composition teachers at the university have included Dr. James Mobberley, Dr. Paul Rudy, Dr. Zhou Long, Dr. Ingrid Stolzel and Dr. Lee Hartman. He is currently studying with Dr. Chen Yi. He also has studied music philosophy and theory independently with Dr. Hali Fieldman and Dr. Reynold Simpson and poetry with Dr. Michelle Boisseau.


John Frum Lives!

This piece was inspired by the cargo cults that evolved in the Pacific islands directly following World War II. Seeing the riches brought to the strange white visitors by giant metal machines was baffling to the islanders. The white men did nothing of value, they sat behind desks shuffling papers for most of the day and were rewarded with invaluable treasures and new technologies brought to them by fantastic flying machines. The villagers naturally assumed that since the white men did nothing to produce this cargo, it must be earned through some super natural ritual designed to influence the Gods. Cargo Cults sprang into being. The villagers began to imitate what they considered to be religious rituals. They constructed dirt runways, bamboo air traffic control towers, wooden headphones, and decoy planes to lure down the planes carrying the precious cargo. As these cults evolved, they began to take on individual characteristics and idiosyncrasies. One of the most pervasive believed in a god-head named John Frum. John Frum was a native islander who had visited the land of the white man and would one day return to share his cargo with his kinsman.

Composer and Bass Clarinetist Brad Baumgardner earned a B.A. in music from Western Kentucky University in 2003, a M.M. in composition from the University of Louisville in 2006, and is currently pursuing a D.M.A. in composition as the Graduate Teaching Assistant and Assistant Director of the Musica Nova ensemble at the UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance. Brad's music has been featured all over the United States, including recent performances by the Trio Bel Canto at the North American Saxophone Alliance 2008 convention, and performances by the avante garde ensemble thingNY in Brooklyn, NY.

Brad continues to remain active both as a soloist and as a performer with area ensembles and continues to foster the development of new music. He has collaborated with area composers and has premiered multiple works during his time in Kansas City, including the recent premier of his own Bass Clarinet concerto with the UMKC orchestra. Recent awards include an individual artist grant from the Kentucky Arts Council and a residency at the Atlantic Center for the Arts.



was originally composed as a trio for flute, clarinet, and bassoon. The piece was expanded to a sextet between December of 2009 and January of 2010. The piece explores two ideas: The development of a single trichord (D, E-flat, F) and the creation and expansion of small musical fragments cast over the 12 minutes of the piece. These fragments serve as the basis for the melodic, harmonic, and formal structure of the work.

Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Anthony Donofrio is currently a 2nd-year Ph.D. student in Music Composition at the University of Iowa. He has studied with David Gompper, Frank Wiley, John Eaton, Paul Schoenfield, and Thomas Janson. His chamber work Obituary was recently premiered by the Five-One New Music Ensemble as a part of Cleveland Public Theater's BigBOX series. He holds a Bachelor of Music, a Master of Music, and a Master of Arts from Kent State University.


Trio for violin, violoncello, and piano

was written for Musica Nova, the University of Missouri - Kansas City's new music ensemble. The work is a reaction from the composer's personal experiences surrounding a life-threatening illness both at an early age and at the time of composing the work.

Nicholas S. Omiccioli (b. 1982) has received degrees from Heidelberg University and the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He is the artistic director of Musica Nova at UMKC and the coordinator of the Composers in the Schools (CITS) program. Mr. Omiccioli currently studies composition with James Mobberley, Chen Yi, Paul Rudy, and Zhou Long. He has previously studied with Joao Pedro Oliveira, Brian Bevelander, and Mark Olivieri. Mr. Omiccioli has received many awards including a commission by the 2010 Wellesley Composers' Conference, winner and judge's choice in the 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010 UMKC Chamber Music Composition Competitions, 2009 DuoSolo Emerging Composer Award, Kansas City Chorale Crescendo Competition, Brian M. Israel Prize, Ars Nova Composition Award, and the Dance Rochester! Composer/Choreographer Competition. Just recently, Mr. Omiccioli was nominated for an award by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His music has been performed by DuoSolo, the Kansas City Chorale, The Wellesley Composers' Conference, Society for New Music, Heidelberg New Music Festival, University of Central Missouri New Music Festival, Regional and National College Music Society Conferences, as well as numerous SCI Conferences at the National, National Student, and Regional levels. In addition to composition, Mr. Omiccioli studies guitar with Douglas Niedt and teaches at the UMKC Academy of Music and Dance and Kansas City School of Music.

Matthew DOTSON


In my work I am often drawn to relatively simple systems that unfold before the listener. In Erosion, there are several of these processes that unfold simultaneously. The piece begins with a pitch cluster that gradually spreads into total chromatic saturation (about half-way through the piece) before shrinking back into clusters. As this is happening there is, on a macro level, a gradual speeding of events throughout the entire duration of the work. The interactions between this linear progression in the time domain and the (relatively) cyclical progression in the frequency domain form the main dialogue of the work.

Matthew Dotson (b. 1981) is currently pursuing a PhD in Composition at the University of Iowa where he has studied with Lawrence Fritts, John Eaton and David Gompper in addition to assisting in the operations of the Electronic Music Studios. Recent performances of his music include New York City (New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival), Evanston, Illinois (Midwest Graduate Music Consortium), Cambridge, Massachusetts (Wired for Sound), Belgrade, Serbia (Art of Sounds Festival), Mexico City (Circuito Electrovisiones), and Santiago, Chile (Festival Ai-Maako). Additional info can be found at www.matthewdotson.com