Matthew Lyon Hazzard (b.1989) is a composer, conductor, and educator from Southern Pines, North Carolina.
He received his Bachelor of Music Composition and Master of Arts in Teaching from East Carolina University. His choral music has been performed internationally, garnering performances and awards from the Metropolitan Chorus of Tokyo, the Choral Arts Initiative, the 18th Street Singers, Vancouver Chamber Choir, the North Carolina Master Chorale, and multiple collegiate ensembles. He has been praised for his “exquisite text-setting and clear understanding of choral voices,” with his music being described as “a stunning landscape of sound.”
Matthew currently works as a high school choral director in Greenville, North Carolina, where he continues to write for voices.
Composer Daniel Pappas is on the faculty of Fayetteville Technical Community College in NC and serves as their music program coordinator.
Dr. Pappas is the founder and director of the annual American Music Festival at FTCC, which presents important works by 20th century American composers, an evening of jazz, and premiers/presents new works by living composers.
Pappas studied violin at Grace College and has only recently picked up the clarinet in an effort to better understand jazz improvisation. Writing for clarinet has not only opened new creative doors, but also allows for the composer to perform his own works, something Daniel is making a more concerted effort to do.
Kevin Austin was born in Orange County, California in 1990. He is one of the seven musicians in the award-winning (Junge Ohren Preis) Lucerne Festival children’s show HEROÏCA. Austin has recorded at Capitol Records in Hollywood, performed with groups such as the Airborne Toxic Event, Wild Up! Contemporary Orchestra, International Contemporary Ensemble, and has recorded for other Hollywood media. After moving to Europe, Kevin was invited to the Lucerne Festival Academy, and has performed with a wide variety of orchestras and ensembles including groups such as MusikFabrik, Klangforum Wien, Ensemble Phoenix, Ensemble Proton, neuverBand, Ensemble Garage, Studio Dan, and Sound Initiative. Austin holds a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Multi-Focus Trombone Performance from the California Institute of the Arts (2012) under the instruction of James Miller and Alex Iles. He also earned two Masters of Arts from the Hochschule für Musik in Basel Switzerland, including a specialized Master of Contemporary Music under the instruction of Mike Svoboda.
Dr. Keith Dippre was born in Ancon, Panama in 1960. He received his undergraduate degree from Azusa Pacific University in California and his M.A. from California State University at Los Angeles. In 2001 he completed his D.M.A. in composition at The Ohio State University. His principal teachers were Dr. Phil Shackleton, Dr. Byong-kon Kim, and Dr. Jan Radzynski.
He is currently the Department Chairman and Professor of Music at Methodist University, teaching such courses as music theory, orchestration, and composition. Dr. Dippre also received a Regional Artist Project Grant from the Arts Council of Fayetteville and Cumberland County and was an artist-in-residence at the Artist’s Enclave at I-Park (East Haddam, Connecticut). In October of 2003 his piece “Pilgrim’s Blues” (for piano, violin, and cowbell) premiered in Northampton, Massachusetts commemorating the tercentenary celebration of Jonathan Edwards.
On his sabbatical from Methodist University, he took part in the Fresno New Music Festival and was a guest lecturer at Azusa Pacific University. He is also the recipient of a 2010, 2012, and 2013 ASCAPLUS award and the winner of the Henry Grady Miller Cup award (2012) for his choral work “Daughters of Song.”
His choral works “Mojave Cross, Desert Voices” and “Light” are published with Renforth Music, and his chamber works “California Low Brow” and “Year of the Rat” are available through Ars Nova Music. His recent commission, “Five Seasons,” was debuted with the North Carolina Music Teachers National Association (NCMTA) for their state conference in 2014.
He also recently received the Methodist University President’s Award for Excellence in Research and Creative Expression (2014). He continues to co-direct the Cape Fear New Music Festival at Methodist University.
Originally from Gary, Indiana, Dr. Daniel McCloud earned his Bachelor of Music in Percussion Performance at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. In 2003 Dr. McCloud earned a Master of Music degree in Instrumental Conducting from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and completed a Doctor of Arts degree in Percussion Performance and Instrumental Conducting from Ball State in 2008.
In addition to university responsibilities, Dr. McCloud serves as an adjudicator, clinician and performer. He has regularly performed with the Kokomo Park Band and Muncie Symphony Orchestra in Indiana, and as Principal Percussionist with the San Angelo Symphony Orchestra in Texas.
In addition to being an active performer and conductor, Dr. McCloud is an active composer and arranger. He has received commissions from the World Saxophone Congress in addition to numerous soloists, band and percussion programs. In 2000, he composed the theme music for a documentary film, “Ed Ball’s Century” for PBS affiliate, WIPB-TV at Ball State University. Dr. McCloud has more than 30 percussion compositions published by Dutch Music Partners. He is an Educational Endorser of Pro-Mark, a prominent percussion company, and is a member of the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP); Percussive Arts Society and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.
Currently, Dr. McCloud is the Director of University Bands at Methodist University. Outside of music, Dr. McCloud enjoys cooking, the occasional weekend warrior activity, and spending time with his wife Sandy and their three sons, Zavier, Zander, and Zane.