By Jonathan Woon
Staff reporter

It all starts with an idea. For Tim Miller, music performance senior, creative composition starts with a
laidback brainstorm session and a cup of coffee. Miller is one of six musicians who will be performing in
the composition recital at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 12 in Messenger Recital Hall. The recital is expected to last less than an hour and admission to the recital is free.

Miller will be performing on the violin. In his preparation, Miller said that creative compositions usually evolve from a laidback brainstorming session. “I usually start with an idea then think of what would sound cool with it,” he said.

Using an instrument is an effective tool in creative composition. Miller said that he often composes music with his violin by his side. “The school provides Sibelius 6 for us to use which helps a lot,” said Miller who will be performing his composition “Tu No Sabes,” a Spanish tenor art song. Sebelius 6 is composition software that helps musicians compose music in an effective and creative way digitally.

Miller will be performing his composition “Tu No Sabes,” a Spanish tenor art song. Besides Miller, Joanna Woon, music performance senior, and Ismail Farid, music performance senior, Stephen Butler, music graduate studies, Lauren Schmitz, community member, and David Holland, high school student, will also be performing their own works. Both classic and contemporary style music will be showcased in the recital.

Butler said, “My advice to those wanting to compose would be to get really familiar with the instruments that
they are composing for and to just experiment and try new things.”

He said composition is a challenge because a person is vulnerable to the critiques of others, but as creators of music they should embrace that.

Christopher Schmitz, assistant professor of music is director of the Community Music School. He encourages people of all ages to come enjoy music as well as support these talented composers. “We’d be delighted to have as many people in attendance as possible,” he said.

Schmitz said he is excited to showcase the wonderful, creative and unique work that the participants have been working on this semester.Schmitz teaches music composition and incorporates both traditional and digital methods of composition.

Miller said students who enroll in the music composition class will take lessons from Schmitz and learn the fundamentals of composition.

Jonathan Woon is a freshman majoring in communication. You may e-mail him at