College of Arts & Sciences

Guest Artists


Aaron Perrine

Guest Clinician - New Music Concert, March 21

Aaron Perrine, composer, has been commissioned and recorded by various colleges, high schools and middle schools across the country. One of his compositions, April, was a finalist in the first Frank Ticheli Composition Contest. This piece was also a J.W.Pepper "Editor's Choice" and was a featured composition in Teaching Music Through Performance in Band, Volume 7. His compositions for band can be found at C. Alan Publications.

Gregg Bissonette

Artist-in-Residence, 2015-2016

Gregg Bissonette has become known as one of the most versatile drummers in the business, his broad experience ranging from big band, blues, and rock, to Latin, fusion and much more. Bissonette has performed and recorded with a wide range of musicians and bands, including the Maynard Ferguson Big Band, Van Halen, The Buddy Rich Big Band, Joe Satriani, Toto, Don Henley, Carlos Santana,and is currently touring with Ringo Starr. Bissonette has recorded and released two solo albums,Gregg Bissonette on Shrapnel Records and Submarine on Favored Nations Records. Today Gregg continues to record with and for many other artists, films and TV shows.

Jeffrey Jacob

Guest Lecturer & Artist- George Crumb Recital, February 3

Described by the Warsaw Music Journal as "unquestionably one of the greatest performers of 20th century music,", and the New York Times as "an artist of intense concentration and conviction," Jeffrey Jacob received his education from the Juilliard School (MM) and the Peabody Conservatory (Doctorate). Since his debut with the London Philharmonic in Royal Festival Hall, he has appeared as piano soloist with over 25 orchestras internationally including the Moscow, St. Petersburg, Seattle, Portland, Indianapolis, London Symphony and many others. Mr. Jacob has recorded over 120 works for solo piano and piano and orchestra including his critically acclaimed series of CDs of the complete piano music of Samuel Barber and George Crumb and major works of Bela Bartok. As a composer, he has written four symphonies, three piano concertos, and numerous works for piano and chamber ensemble.


Rose Ensemble

Guest Performers of the Artists & Speakers Committee, September 19

Founded in 1966 by Artistic Director Jordan Sramek, The Rose Ensemble has achieved an international reputation as a premiere American early music ensemble. Each performance illuminates centuries of rarely heard repertoire, bringing to modern audiences research from the world's manuscript libraries and fresh perspectives on history, culture, politics and spirituality from around the globe. With ten critically acclaimed recordings and a diverse selection of concert programs, the group has thrilled audiences across the United States and Europe with repertoire spanning 1,000 years and over 25 languages. The Rose Ensemble is the recipient of the 2005 Chorus American Margaret Hills Award for Choral Excellence and first prize winner in both sacred and secular music categories at the 2012 Tolosa Choral Contest in Spain.

Morton Lauridsen

Masterclass & Guest Speaker - First-Year Experience Program, November 5

The music of Morten Lauridsen occupies a permanent place in the standard vocal repertoire of the Twenty-First Century. His eight vocal cycles (Lux Aeterna, Les Chansons des Roses, Madrigali: Six 'FireSongs' on Italian Renaissance Poems, A Winter Come, Cuatro Canciones, A Backyard Universe, Nocturnes and Mid-Winter Songs on Poems by Robert Graves), instrumental works, art songs and series of motets (including O Magnum Mysterium) are performed throughout the world and have been recorded on over two hundred CDs, including several that received Grammy nominations. Mr. Lauridsen (b. 1943) served as Composer-in-Residence of the Los Angeles Master Chorale from 1995-2001 and is currently Distinguished Professor of Composition at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music. An award-winning documentary by Michael Stillwater, Shining Night-A Portrait of Composer Morten Lauridsen, was released in 2012 (


Shawn Kirchner

Masterclass & Guest Clinician - CLU Choir, November 25

Shawn Kirchner is a composer and songwriter active in the musical circles of Los Angeles. His choral compositions are performed throughout the United States and abroad in concert halls, churches, schools, and on radio and on television. Kirchner's growing list of TV/Film credits includes his work as music director/arranger for the 2004 CBS Christmas Eve special Enter the Light of Life, and his singing on a number of recent feature film soundtracks, including Avatar, Frozen, The Lorax, Horton Hears a Who, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, X-Men: First Class, Lady in the Water, and License to Wed.

David Maslanka

Masterclass & Guest Clinician - 11th Annual New Music Concert, March 16

David Maslanka is a highly acclaimed composer of wind and percussion works.  His compositions have been performed extensively throughout the United States and the world.  His works for wind and perucssion have become standard repertoire for wind band and percussion ensembles.  He has published more than 100 pieces including nine symphonies, a Mass, nine concerti, and a wide variety of chamber works.  His music has been characterized as a blend of lyricism and intense rhythmic drive notable for its poetry, warmth and spiritual qualities.



Guest Performers of the Artists & Speakers Committee, September 6

Called "the world's reigning male chorus" by the New Yorker and praised by the San Francisco Chronicle for "tonal luxuriance and crisply etched clarity," this Grammy Award-winning ensemble has recently appeared in venues including New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, Walt Disney Concert Hall and six California missions, where they performed newly discovered music of the mission period.  They have toured all over the world and this season Chanticleer performed on the soundtrack of the 10th-anniversary release by Microsoft of its video game Halo.


Guest Performers of the Artists & Speakers Committee, March 2

Called the "high priests of the percussion world" by the New York Times, Bob Becker, Bill Cahn, Russell Hartenberger and Garry Kvistad comprise what is considered one of the premiere percussion ensembles in the world today.  The influential composer Steve Reich has called them "probably the most acclaimed percussion group on earth".

David Lang

Masterclass & Guest Composer, 10th Annual New Music Concert, February 19

Pulitzer Prize winner David Lang, one of America's most performed composers, is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the Rome Prize, the BMW Music-Theater Prize (Munich), and grants from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Foundation for Contemporary Performance Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts and the American Academy of Arts and Letters.


Christopher Cock

Guest Artist, October 22

Christopher M. Cock, Director of Choral and Vocal Activities at Valparaiso University, holds the Phyllis and Richard Duesenberg Chair in Lutheran Music and is Director of the Bach Institute.  As a solo artist, he has received wide acclaim performing his signature role as a Bach Evangelist, with more than fifty performances to his credit both in the US and internationally. 

Nicole Lee

Guest Artist, October 22

Nicole Lee, a native of Vancouver, Canada, is a pianist acclaimed as both a soloist and a collaborative artist.  As a soloist, she has performed at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Sarasota Opera House, the Orpheum in Vancouver, Canada, and for CBC Radio in Ottawa, Canada.  Her awards include First Runner-Up in the International Stravinsky Awards Competition, First Prize in the Pasadena Fine Arts Club Competition and Semi-finalist in the Royal Over-Seas League Competition in London.

The Emerson String Quartet

Guest Artists of the Artists & Speakers Committee, September 22

The Emerson String Quartet holds more than thirty acclaimed recordings since 1987, nine Grammy® Awards, three Gramophone Awards, the coveted Avery Fisher Prize and cycles of the complete Beethoven, Bartok, Mendelssohn and Shostakovich string quartets in the world's musical capitals, from New York to London and Vienna.

Jonathan Ryan

Guest Organist, Orville and Gloria Franzen 2011-2012 Organ Program Series, September 16

Jonathan Ryan has quickly emerged as one of North America's premier young concert artists.  Among the few organists ever distinguished with six First Prize awards at major international and national competitions, he most notably received First Prize in the 2009 Jordan II International Organ Competition.

Michael Schelle

Guest Composer, 9th Annual New Music Concert, March 26

Michael Schelle, Composer in Residence at Butler University's School of Music in Indianapolis, has been a two-time Pulitzer Prize nominee and recipient of the Rockefeller Foundation Composition Prize.  Schelle's music has been commissioned and/or performed by over 250 orchestras and professional chamber ensembles across the world.


Libby Larsen

Guest Composer, 8th Annual New Music Concert, April 23

Grammy Award winning Libby Larsen is one of America's most performed living composers.  She has created a catalogue of over 400 works spanning virtually every genre from intimate vocal and chamber music to massive orchestral works and over fifteen operas.


Eric Whitacre

Masterclass & Guest Composer, 7th Annual New Music Concert, April 24

An accomplished composer, conductor and lecturer, Eric Whitacre has quickly become one of the most popular and performed composers of his generation.  He has received composition awards from the Barlow International Composition Competition, the American Choral Directors Association and the American Composers Forum.  In 2001, Whitacre became the youngest recipient ever awarded the coveted Raymond C. Brock commission by the American Choral Directors Association.

Hila Plitmann

Guest Artist, 7th Annual New Music Concert, April 24

Grammy award-winning soprano Hila Plitmann is a glittering jewel on the international music scene, known worldwide for her astonishing musicianship, light and beautiful voice, and the ability to perform challenging new works. She regularly premieres works by today’s leading composers while maintaining a vibrant and extraordinarily diverse professional life in film music, musical theatre, and song writing.

Garry Schyman

Guest Speaker, Music Production program

Award-winning composer Garry Schyman has written music for feature films, prime time television series, mini-series, movies of the week, documentaries and interactive media.  Renowned for his unique and often complex original scores for the multi award-winning video games BioShock, BioShock 2, BioShock Infinite, Schyman has emerged as one of the industry's foremoste composers, receiving top honors for Best Original Score from the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences and Spike TV.

2008 - Post Modern LA: Los Angeles Composers - 6th Annual New Music Concert

Jason Barabba

Composer Jason V. Barabba's work has been called "deeply meditative" by Fanfare magaizine.  His chamber orchestra work The Abandonment of Pluto was premiered in England at the University of Bristol in 2008 and his String Trio was broadcast on WNYC radio in New York in 2009.  Recordings of Barabba's music have been commercially released on the Yarlung Records, MMC Recordings and Navona Records labels.

Jenni Brandon

Jenni Brandon is a composer of solo, vocal, choral, chamber and orchestral music.  Her award-winning music has been featured at festivals, conferences, and on radio broadcasts, and her works are published by Boosey & Hawkes, Santa Barbara Music Publishing, Graphite Publishing and Jenni Brandon Music.  Jenni's first self-produced CD, Songs of California: Music for Winds and Piano, was released in 2010 and was nominated for the 10th Independent Music Awards.

Vera Ivanova

After teaching as Assistant Professor of Theory and Composition at the Setnor School of Music of Syracuse University, she was appointed as Assistant Professor of Music in the College of Performing Arts at Chapman University in Orange, CA. Ms. Ivanova is a recipient of many awards that include the Sproull Fellowship at Eastman, the Gwyn Ellis Bequest Scholarship at Guildhall School, Moscow Culture Committee and American Composers Forum Subito grants, Honourable mention at the 28th Bourges Electro-Acoustic Competition, Third Prize at the Eighth International Mozart Competition, First Prize in Category "A" at International Contest of Acousmatic Compositions Metamorphoses 2004 (Belgium) and the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composers Award.

Alex Miller

Alexander Elliott Miller is a composer, guitarist and educator whose compositions for orchestra, guitar, percussion and chamber ensembles have been performed across the US by ensembles including Brave new Works, the Los Angeles Percussion Quartet, the Quintet Attacca, the What's Next? Ensemble and the USC Symphony. Alex is currently a Composition Fellow at the MacDowell Colony.  In 2010 he was awarded a grant from the American Composers Forum to lead an after school music education program.

Joseph Trapanese

Joseph Trapanese is a Los Angeles-based composer, arranger, orchestrator and producer of music for film, television, multimedia, theater and concerts. His contributions as arranger and orchestrator include Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, What Happens in Vegas and Traitor.  Alongside composer Daniel Licht, Joseph produced and orchestrated the scores for seasons 3 and 4 of Showtime's original series Dexter.  In 2009 Joseph won ASCAP's Harold Arlen Film and Television Award and in 2007 won the first annual Jerry Goldsmith Award from UCLA.


Steven Stucky

Guest Composer, Fifth Annual New Music Concert, March 25

Widely recognized as one of the leading composers today, Steven Stucky was awarded the 2005 Pulitzer Prize in Music for his Second Concerto for Orchestra.  He has written commissioned works for many of the major American orchestras and ensembles.  Mr. Stucky has taught at Cornell University since 1980, where he serves as Given Foundation Professor of Composition.  He has also been associated with the Los Angeles Philharmonic for more than 20 years, and is currently Consulting Composer for New Music.

Gloria Cheng

Guest Artist, Fifth Annual New Music Concert, March 25

Grammy-winning pianist Gloria Cheng has won widespread acclaim as a discerning artist whose recitals and recordings explore and reveal significant interconnections between composers. Noted for her illuminating programs and devotion to tapping the emotional core of contemporary music, Cheng has been presented in recital by the Ojai Festival, Chicago Humanities Festival, William Kapell Festival, Mendocino Festival, and Tanglewood's 2012 Festival of Contemporary Music.


Ensemble Amarcord

Guest Artists, October 24

Comprised of five former choristers of the famous St. Thomas Boys Choir in Leipzig, Ensemble Amarcord has emerged in the past few years as continental Europes finest mens a cappella quintet. The blend of humor, charm, elegance, flawless intonation, rarely heard homogeneity and unwavering vocal virtuosity have left audiences delighted since the ensembles debut in 1992.


Henry Price
Tenor Master Class

Henry Price is Professor of Music at Pepperdine University where he directs the opera program and teaches voice. Read more about Henry Price.

Byron J. Smith
Gospel Master Class with CLU Choir

Byron J. Smith is a native of Los Angeles and is an associate professor of music at Los Angeles Harbor College where he specializes in commercial music, teaching music industry courses, piano and voice.

Robert Hobby, Organist
with CLU Choral Ensembles

Known for his creative hymn festivals, organist/composer Robert Hobby was joined by members of the CLU choral ensembles and student instrumentalists in April 2005 for a "Mostly Scandinavian Hymn Festival."

Esa-Pekka Salonen
Third annual new music concert

Mr. Salonen was in attendance in February of 2005 to discuss his music with the audience. Maestro Salonen, conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, is recognized as an accomplished composer as well as conductor. He received an honorary degree at CLU's Commencement Ceremony in May 2003.

Gloria Cheng
Third annual new music concert

Guest artist Gloria Cheng, widely recognized as one of today's foremost interpreters of contemporary music, performed the U.S. premiere of Salonen's new compositions for piano!

The Academic Female Voice Choir Lyran (Finland)
Kari Turunen, Conductor

The Academic Female Voice Choir Lyran, established in 1946, is the only female voice choir at the University of Helsinki. "Lyran" aims to promote and inspire the female choral tradition in Finland. The choir has approximately 50 active members, mainly students from different universities and colleges in Helsinki. For more information on "Lyran" visit their website:


Frederica von Stade

Recognized as one of the most beloved musical figures of our time, Frederica von Stade's career has taken her to the stages of the world's great opera houses. She has also appeared in concert with the world's leading orchestras and conductors.

Jake Heggie

Jake Heggie is the American composer of the operas Moby-Dick, Dead Man Walking, Three Decembers, The End of the Affair, To Hell and Back, and the stage works For a Look or a Touch and At the Statue of Venus.  He has also composed more than 200 art songs, as well as orchestral, choral and chamber music.  Heggie's operas have been performed to tremendous acclaim internationally and by more than a dozen American opera companies.

Jeff Kaiser
13 Themes for a Triskaidekaphobic

Ventura resident Jeff Kaiser is a composer, trumpet player and conductor whose music has been performed around the world. In addition to composing, he is well known in creative music circles as a trumpet player performing with many ensembles including The Los Angeles Trumpet Quartet and the Kreative Orchestra of Los Angeles as well as his own ensemble, The Jeff Kaiser Ockodektet.

Jim Connolly
13 Themes for a Triskaidekaphobic

Jim Connolly, musician extraordinaire, performed at the Halloween night opening of CLUs light sculptures exhibit. The lush soundscapes he produced and the range of instruments he has mastered — solo bass, handsaw, bibberbox, bullroarer, percussion, bells and whistles — amazed all. His voice is ethereal, and his virtuosity places him in a group of contemporary composers who are breaking the boundaries of their field.


Ross King
Brunelleschi's Dome and Michelangelo's Ceiling

As a precursor to the Festival of New Music "Architectural Boundries" held in April, British author Ross King discussed his best-selling nonfiction work Brunelleschi's Dome as well as his new book, Michelangelo's Ceiling.

Jessica Rivera
Soprano Master Class

Hailed as a shining soprano whose voice possesses shimmering clarity, Jessica Rivera has been lauded by the Los Angeles Times for being "highly accomplished, fully equipped and most promising." Ms. Rivera has performed with some of America's finest operatic and orchestral organizations including Los Angeles Opera, Santa Fe Opera, and Opera Santa Barbara.

Henry Brant
Architectural Boundries

Guest composer Henry Brant, winner of the 2002 Pulitzer Prize in Music, is featured in the main concert of the Festival of New Music. The concert included performances by the CLU Choir and Symphony. Works performed included Brant's Antiphony l, Dufay's Nuper Rosarum Flores and a new work by CLU music professor Mark Spraggins.


Amy Knoles
Artists and Speakers Series

Amy Knoles is a musician who has headlined major festivals throughout the world and is the recipient of many international music awards. Her music has been described as being of frightening beauty, fascinating, complex; and her performances are said to redefine "New Music."

Martin Jean

As a winner of two of the most prestigious organ competitions in the world, he has performed extensively throughout the United States, Canada, Korea, and Europe. In 1996 Jean was awarded first prize at the International Grand Prix de Chartres competition held bi-annually at Chartres Cathedralin France.

Christopher Cock
Tenor Master Class

A specialist in the music of J.S. Bach, Christopher Cock lead a master class focusing on Barouque music and, in particular, the vocal music of J.S. Bach. CLU music students benefited from Dr. Cock's unique artistry and communication skills as they performed and recieved instruction onstage.

Henry Brant
Architectural Boundries

Guest composer Henry Brant, winner of the 2002 Pulitzer Prize in Music, was featured in the main concert of the Festival of New Music. The concert included performances by the CLU Choir and Symphony. Works performed included Brant's Antiphony l, Dufay's Nuper Rosarum Flores and a new work by CLU music professor Mark Spraggins.


Mark Swed
Distinguished Speakers Series

Mark Swed has been chief music critic of the Los Angeles Times since 1996. He was music critic of the Los Angeles Herald Examiner from 1984 to 1987 and a music critic for the Wall Street Journal from 1988 to 1996. He has also written about music for the New York Times, The New Yorker, Musical America and Opera News among many other national and international publications, as well as contributing liner notes for recordings, program notes for concerts and catalog essays for the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art.