Robert Maggio is an American composer and music educator. He has written music for orchestra, symphonic band, chorus, vocalists, instrumental soloists and chamber ensembles. He has also written musicals, incidental music for plays, and scores for ballet and modern dance. He is a Professor of Music at West Chester University of Pennsylvania.
Maggio’s concert music performances include the Boston Pops, Atlanta Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Long Beach Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, New York Festival of Song, Daedalus Quartet, Randall Scarlata, Sanford Sylvan, Meridian Arts Ensemble, Network for New Music, Orchestra 2001, and The Crossing.
A long-time member of the BMI Musical Theatre Workshop in New York City, Maggio is currently collaborating on several new musicals, including projects with writers Michael Hollinger, Bruce Graham, Kristin Maloney, and Justin Warner. His musical, TouchTones (with playwright Michael Hollinger) was produced by the Arden Theatre in Philadelphia in 2017. ANIARA: fragments of time and space—a choral theatre work created in collaboration with The Crossing (Donald Nally, music director), and Finland’s Klockriketeatern (Dan Henriksson, artistic director and librettist)—was produced in 2019 in Philadelphia, at the Koorbiennale in Haarlem, and at the Finnish National Opera in Helsinki.
Maggio is the recipient of grants from the Guggenheim Foundation, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Pew Fellowships in the Arts, the American Composers Forum, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, ASCAP, BMI, New Music USA, and Meet the Composer.
Published by Theodore Presser Company, Hickman Music Editions and Yelton Rhodes, Maggio’s music is recorded on the Summit, Albany and New World/CRI labels. A graduate of Yale University and the University of Pennsylvania, Robert Maggio lives with his family in Lambertville, New Jersey.
Ephraim Champion is an active musician/composer in Chicago, Illinois. He received his Bachelor of Music in Performance (Horn) from the University of Illinois Chicago, where he also studied composition.
In 2020, Ephraim played horn on Leo Sowerby’s piece “Synconata, H. 176a” with the Andy Baker Orchestra in an album released by Cedille Records. The following year, Ephraim’s composition, “Scenes from South Shore, Chicago”, was commissioned and performed by the Gaudete Brass Quintet as part of the 2021 Ear Taxi Music Festival in Chicago, receiving praise from the Chicago Classical Review as a “strongly individual and compelling work”.
Currently, Ephraim is pursuing his Master’s in Orchestral Studies at Roosevelt University; serves in the 484th Army Reserve Band; and maintains an active teaching, arranging, and conducting role at the West Point School of Music. Outside of music, Ephraim enjoys writing and spending time with his beautiful wife, Kianti, and their Yorkie, Heath.
Jeffrey Derus (b. 1990) is an American composer and educator. His music has gained national and international presence with commissions and performances from a variety of ensembles such as Choral Arts Initiative, INSPIRARE, Inversion Ensemble, KC VITAS, the Nova Scotia Choral Federation, QED Vocal Ensemble, Magpies & Ravens, the Afternoon Singers, Temple University, and Vanguard University.
Hailed as “elegant” by the Voice of OC, Jeffrey’s music is recognized by critics, performers, and audiences for its lyrical voice and lush soundscapes. He is a recipient of the Britten-Pears and Holst Foundation composer residency in Aldeburgh, UK. Jeffrey is also a founding board member and choral artist of Choral Arts Initiative.
He holds a B.A. in Choral Music Education from California State University of Fullerton and a M.A. in Education from Brandman University. He is the Vocal Music Director at Canyon High School with an award-winning choral and vocal program. His music is available at MusicSpoke and J.W. Pepper marketplace.
Leo Discenza is a 21-year-old composer and soprano from Arlington, Virginia. They are a fourth- year undergraduate in the Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University, where they study composition with Hans Thomalla, Jay Alan Yim, and Alex Mincek. With strong roots in choral music, Leo gravitates most toward vocal music, but enjoys writing for all instruments.
Upcoming/recent performances include pieces for JACK Quartet, Third Coast Percussion, and Northwestern’s Contemporary Music Ensemble. Leo’s current passion project is a podcast- opera based on the Greek myth of Philomela. Leo collaborates with four other composers in KOLAJ, an electro-acoustic ensemble. Outside of composition,
Leo is a soprano in the Bienen Contemporary/Early Vocal Ensemble (BCE) under Donald Nally, as well as in the Renaissance Singers, where they are co-music director and treasurer. They study vocal performance with Elissa Edwards.
Kari Watson (b.1998) is a composer and sound artist working between the mediums of contemporary concert music and electroacoustic music. Motivated by a passion for narrative and musical drama, Watson works to create music that is clear, tactile, and emotionally driven. Her work has been featured in a variety of concerts and festivals, most recently on the 2021 Ear Taxi Festival, and at the 2020 New Music Gathering. Watson holds a BM from Oberlin Conservatory in Composition, with a minor in TIMARA (technology in music and related arts). She is currently pursuing a Ph.D at the University of Chicago under Augusta Read Thomas.