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Biography
Ryan Jesperson (1981) is a composer whose music is steeped in the modern practice of blurring genres and skewing expectations. With a taste for eccentric rhythms and dissonant chord progressions, Ryan’s music alludes to his jazz and rock roots while still staying firmly ensconced in the modern classical tradition. Ryan holds an MM and an AD from the University of Hartford, and a BM and BA from Washington State University. Currently, Ryan is pursuing his doctorate at the University of Missouri-Kansas City where he is a Chancellor’s Doctoral Fellow. His principal compositions teachers include Chen Yi, Zhou Long, James Mobberley, Larry Alan Smith, Robert Carl, Stephen Gryc, Charles Argersinger and Gregory Yasinitsky. Ryan is currently studying with Paul Rudy.
Ryan’s compositions have been performed across the country and abroad, with performances at multiple SCI and NACUSA concerts, the CMU New Music Festival, the Nebraska at Kearney New Music Festival, and the ReJoyce Festival among others. His chamber opera, Words for the Dead, was premiered in 2004 at Washington State University. Recent performances include fragments and memories by Radu Clipa in Bucharest, Romania, Farbenmusik by Kari Johnson at the CMS Great Plains Conference, Sand at the Kalv Festival in Sweden, and Concerto for Flute by Sophia Tegart and the UMKC Orchestra in Kansas City, MO. Upcoming performances include a new work for brass quintet and piano for ArtSounds, a trumpet sonata for Chris Belluscio and the premiere of fragments and memories by the UMKC Wind Symphony. Ryan is also currently working on his first CD release with the vocalist Ashly Evans. His compositions Humanity Divine and Birdsongs will be featured on the upcoming disc.
The winner of the 2009 British Trombone Society Composition Contest, the 2008 UMKC Orchestra Composition Competition, and honorable mention in the 2008 NACUSA Young Composer Awards, Ryan has also won awards from the College Music Society, the Lional Hampton Jazz Festival, FASR, and Phi Beta Kappa. His list of commissions include the Honors String Quartet, the Miklos Quartet, trumpeter Chris Belluscio, violinist Sarah Washburn, vocalist Ashly Evans and trombonist Radu Clipa. Also an educator, Ryan was a member of the music faculty at the Hartford Conservatory and taught at the University of Hartford. Ryan is published through Sound Music Publications and Warwick Music, as well as his own imprint, Jazzperson Music. You can find out more at www.ryanjesperson.com.
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