The music department at UCM continues to extend its reach around the globe.
Jeff Kaiser, assistant professor of music technology and composition, is set to perform in Estonia for the 2019 World Music Days Festival this May. Kaiser was selected to participate in the event, organized by the International Society for Contemporary Music, along with six other American participants.
Kaiser said the event is one of the biggest international festivals featuring new music of this type with 99 works being presented from more than 40 countries. The eight-day festival is set for May 2-10. Founded in 1922, he said the ISCM network includes some 60 organizations in over 50 countries.
Ricky Spaeth, junior music technology major, said Kaiser is passionate about the music he creates and enjoys his entertaining classes because he treats his students as equals.
“I find it really cool that Dr. Kaiser gets invited to perform at these types of events, and it makes me happy to know we have professors who are recognized for their talents around the world,” he said.
Kaiser said he will be performing his piece “Zeitnot III,” which features complex interactive technologies that he created, utilizing software and hacked hardware. His multimedia piece features trumpet, voice and video.
He said the piece was nominated by the Miami Chapter of the ISCM and was selected by an international jury for inclusion in the festival. He said the organization received over 500 submissions.
Eric Honour, head of music and assistant chair of the School of Visual and Performing Arts, said the entry into the festival is competitive.
“The ISCM World Music Days is widely considered one of the most prestigious and competitive festivals for contemporary music in the world,” he said.
Kaiser said he is thrilled to be part of such an exclusive event, “giving me the opportunity to present a concert featuring my latest research — improvising interactive digital music technologies — in a rigorously juried forum to an audience representing many of the finest composers of contemporary music from around the world.”
He said he will be meeting different composers, performers and music technologists as well.
“I love traveling. I love meeting new people with new ideas that are working the field of creative art,” Kaiser said.
Kaiser said such international events show the world the great things that are going on at UCM.
“Our music department has an international reach,” Kaiser said in an email to the Muleskinner. “Alex Smith is currently on eight months leave to research music in Ghana (supported by a Fulbright). Mia Hynes and Eric Honour perform abroad. Elisabeth Stimpert travels the world with Alarm Will Sound and as a soloist, and I am fortunate to perform regularly in the US and abroad.”
Kaiser said interacting with the technology he creates is what keeps him interested in the field.
“For me, music technology is about the joy of discovery,” he said. “It’s a privilege to teach it as well because I get to share that joy.”
Before the interest in music technology, Kaiser played in a number of punk and rock bands. He said he’s been fortunate to participate in some great events in Europe but this one felt like a big one.
Joey Carter, junior music education major, said Kaiser’s participation in the event is incredible and that he deserves it.
“He’s a great performer on his trumpet and the things he can do with technology in addition to that is outstanding,” he said.
Editor’s note: This version of the story includes additional and clarified information throughout.