“I am interested in the expression of an idea; in creating pieces through observation of the inherent musical potential of my sound material. In each piece, I invent processes that express this potential, generating contexts for their realization. In that sense my music results from the interaction of observations, intuition, and processes, rather than from a willful shaping of my materials.”
“Harmonically and rhythmically moving,” Minneapolis Star Tribune, “Beautiful, emotional music that is exciting, expressive, and fresh in its musical language,” WV Commission on the arts.
Mark Zanter, an active composer/performer, has received commissions from the UIUC Creative Music Orchestra, CU Symphony, the American Composers forum, the WV Commission on the Arts, WVMTA, Due East, Solen Dikener, Rick Kurasz, Cetin Aydar and many others. He has appeared as a composer and performer on NPR’s Live at the Landmark, WILL, IPR, Second Sunday concerts, on WVPN In Touch With The Arts, is published by Les Productions d’OZ, and his works have been performed nationally and internationally at festivals including, MUSIC “X” (Cincinnati Conservatory) June in Buffalo, The Cortona Contemporary Music Festival, NYCEMF and the Atlantic Center for the Arts. He is the recipient of grants/awards from The American Society of Composers and Publishers, The American Music Center, The American Composers Forum, The West Virginia Division of Culture and History, and WV Music Teachers Association.
As a performer Dr. Zanter is equally at home performing standard repertoire, creative music, and jazz and has appeared with orchestras, chamber groups, and improvisers, including the Huntington Symphony Orchestra, the Ohio Valley Orchestra, Sinfonia Da Camera, Anthony Braxton, Roscoe Mitchell, Leroy Jenkins, Vinko Globokar, George Lewis, Butch Morris, and Alphonse Mouzon. He has recorded with Deborah Richtmeyer, Vinko Globokar, and his work with Anthony Braxton received special mention in Downbeat Magazine.
Dr. Zanter’s research interests include Algorithmic Composition, Structural Models for Improvisation, and Conduction(r) the music of Butch Morris. Mr. Zanter completed his A. Mus. D. in composition at the University of Illinois where he studied with, Salvatore Martirano, William Brooks, Paul Martin Zonn, and Erik Lund. He is Coordinator of Music Theory and Composition at Marshall University, Huntington, WV.
MUSIC COMPOSITION AT MARSHALL:
In general the focus of our program is to develop students’ artistic talents, their unique compositional voice, and awareness of the business side of contemporary art making. This is done in a supportive environment that offers a level of access to performers and technology rivaling many larger institutions. Composition majors as a whole tend towards high academic achievement, and diversity of thought and musical practice are encouraged at every stage in the program.
The B.F.A. in Music Composition emphasizes Music Theory, and Composition, providing emerging composers with a well-balanced education in historical forms and emerging trends.
M.A. students work closely with the composition coordinator to develop a program of study that suits their needs. These students are looked upon for leadership and most serve the Music Department as teaching assistants.
Success of the program is evidenced in the fact the Marshall Music Composition students have attended international festivals (Soundscapes, Alba, Atlantic Center for the Arts), national workshops in composition and film scoring, are published, and have received national recognition in their own right.
SCI (Society of Composers inc.) MU Chapter
SCI MU Chapter, one of the largest chapters nationally, sponsors biannual student composition concerts, Student Composer CD’s, trips to concerts/conferences of contemporary music, grant writing, and fundraising activities.
Most events are student initiated and produced, meaning that students have significant input in exploring their interests, while gaining practical experience in producing concerts, scores, and recordings of their works.
The MU Orchestra also features a yearly student composer competition and all major ensembles welcome student composers’ works.
In addition SCI hosts guest composers of international stature who present master classes, produce concerts of their work, or work directly with the Contemporary Music Ensemble. The Edwards Distinguished Professor program supports many of these activities. In 2010, Marshall University Hosted the SCI Student National Conference, which was attended by student composers from across the country.
Dr. Mark Zanter
Coordinator of Music Theory/Composition
One John Marshall Drive
Huntington, WV 25755