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KU student composers receive national awards

Friday, March 17, 2017

LAWRENCE – The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) and New York Youth Symphony have recognized KU School of Music students for their jazz compositions. 

Kai Ono, a senior piano and composition major, received an Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composer Award from ASCAP. The award, named in honor of the great trumpeter Herb Alpert who helps fund the program, aims to encourage gifted jazz composers under the age of 30.

Ono, from Irvine, California, was one of 19 musicians in the country to receive the award. The Newport Jazz Festival will feature one of the recipients of the Herb Alpert Awards in August.

Ono, along with Brock Chart, a music composition graduate student from Salina, also received honorable mention in the New York Youth Symphony’s First Music program. The program selects seven of America’s emerging orchestra, chamber music and jazz composers under 30 to write commissions for the symphony’s 2017/2018 season. Ono and Chart received honorable mention for jazz composition.

“It’s exciting to have our students’ work recognized on a national level,” said Dan Gailey, director of the jazz studies program. “These prestigious awards are well deserved.”

This isn’t the first time that Ono and Chart have received national recognition. In 2016, Ono won a DownBeat Student Music Award for Outstanding Composition in the category of undergraduate composition for large ensemble. In 2013 as an undergraduate, Chart received a Downbeat award for Outstanding Performance in the category of original composition – lead sheet.

More information on the KU School of Music jazz studies program can be found here: https://music.ku.edu/jazz.

School of Music Calendar
Music students present hundreds of public concerts every year
Students perform in KU choirs, concert bands, pep bands, ensembles, symphony orchestra, and jazz combos
The school owns one of the greatest jazz record collections in the world
KU Wind Ensemble performed the world premiere of the symphony "In the Shadow of No Towers" at Carnegie Hall
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.