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2011 Winner, Michael-Thomas Foumai

2011 Composer of the Year

Michael-Thomas Foumai

Named Composer of the Year by the Sioux City Symphony Orchestra, Michael-Thomas Foumai (b.1987) was recently awarded the 2012 Jacob Druckman Prize from the Aspen Music Festival and School. His music has been recognized with two Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI) composition awards, the Arthur and Mary Platsis Prize from the University of Michigan and was named winner of the American String Teachers Association (ASTA) Merle J. Isaac Composition Competition. He has received grants from the American Music Center (AMC), Meet the Composer, Argosy Foundation and honors from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), Hawaii Community Foundation (HCF), Hawaii Government Employees Association (HGEA), the mayor and 23rd State Senate Legislator of Honolulu.

Michael's orchestral works have been performed by the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, New England Philharmonic Orchestra, Daegu Contemporary Music Orchestra (Korea), the Orchestra Unleashed, Honolulu Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, University Philharmonia Orchestra (Michigan), University of Hawaii Symphony and the Hawaii Youth Symphony (HYS). His chamber works have been performed by Alarm Will Sound, Aspen Contemporary Ensemble, Ensemble DuoPlus (Germany) and Ebb and Flow Arts among others.

Performed across the United States, China, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia and Thailand, Michael's music has been presented at the Osaka College of Music (Japan), Shanghai New Music Week (China), Yogyakarta Contemporary Music Festival (Indonesia), Hawaii International Film Festival (HIFF), Thailand International Composition Festival (TICF), MidWest Composers Symposium (Cincinnati), Daegu Contemporary Music Festival (Korea), Fresno New Music Festival, Aries Composers Festival (Colorado), June in Buffalo Festival, Mizzou New Music Festival, Aspen Music Festival and School, EarShot New Music Readings (Buffalo, NY) and the Calarts Theatre (REDCAT) at Disney Hall (Los Angeles).

Michael holds a Bachelor (BM) in Music Composition from the University of Hawaii (UH), a Masters in Music Composition (MM) from the University of Michigan (UM) and is currently a doctoral fellow at UM. He has worked with Robert Beaser, Steven Stucky and David Felder at the EarShot New Music Readings and with Roger Reynolds, Anna Clyne, Michael Gordon, Julia Wolfe, George Tsontakis, Jon Magnussen and Neil McKay. He studied at the Aspen Music Festival School as a Susan and Ford Schumann fellow and has participated in masterclasses with Tristan Murail, Xu Shuya, Jia Daqun and Robert Morris. His composition teachers have been Bright Sheng, Michael Daugherty, Syd Hodkinson, Peter Askim, Byron K. Yasui, Donald Reid Womack, Takeo Kudo and Thomas Osborne.

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