COLUMBIA, Mo., March 21, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Three University of Missouri student composers will have their works played by musicians with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra in a public reading session at 8:00 p.m. Wednesday, April 3, at Powell Hall in St. Louis. The public is invited to attend, with no admission charge or RSVP required.

As part of a joint educational venture between the orchestra and the Mizzou New Music Initiative, student composers Mikkel Christensen, Ben Colagiovanni, and Libby Roberts were selected last year by SLSO Resident Conductor Gemma New to write new works for a 40-piece chamber orchestra drawn from the musicians of the St. Louis Symphony.

The resulting compositions are «The Lament of Orpheus» by Roberts; «Fourteen Trees» by Christensen; and «Slow Burn» by Colagiovanni. The three works were first read, played and critiqued in a private session in October, and the composers then had a chance to revise their music for this second, public reading.

Colagiovanni, who grew up in the St. Louis area and attended Clayton High School, is a senior working toward an undergraduate degree in composition at Mizzou. Christensen, who’s from Lockhart, TX, and Roberts, a native of Philadelphia, PA, both are in their second year of study for a master’s degree. They are the second group of Mizzou students to take part in the composer reading program, following Dustin Dunn, Aaron Mencher, and Douglas Osmun in 2017-18.

Celebrated as one of today’s most exciting and enduring orchestras, the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra is the second-oldest orchestra in the country, celebrating its 139th year in the 2018/2019 season. Widely considered one of the world’s finest, the SLSO today builds on the institution’s current momentum on all fronts, including artistic, financial, audience growth, and community impact, and looks toward the future with Music Director Designate Stéphane Denève.

The Mizzou New Music Initiative ( is an array of programs positioning the University of Missouri’s School of Music as a leading center for music composition and new music. 

The programs of the Mizzou New Music Initiative are made possible through the generous support of the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation, led by Dr. Jeanne and Rex Sinquefield (

For more information:

Mizzou New Music Initiative: 
St. Louis Symphony: 
Sinquefield Charitable Foundation:

Media Contact:
Jacob Gotlib
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SOURCE Mizzou New Music Initiative