Composing in the Wilderness 2019: Kayaking Adventure

JUNE 23 - JULY 4, 2019

NOTE: We are nearly done arranging all the plans for this trip and awaiting the final approval from our partners. The exact itinerary will be posted very soon. Cost will be approximately $3,500.

Get further out of your comfort zone!

Following up on the success of the 2018 Arctic Adventure, the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival is very excited to be offering its second guided adventure trip in collaboration with the National Forest Service, Alaska Geographic, and Federal Hall National Historic Site.  Led by adventurer-composer Stephen Lias and designed for experienced acoustic or electroacoustic composers who want a more immersive backcountry experience, this field course will take nine participants on a week-long sea kayaking trip in spectacular Prince William Sound.  Upon returning, the participants will have a couple months to complete their pieces before the culminating concert takes place at Federal Hall National Memorial in New York City.

WHO IS THIS FOR?

Participants should be prepared to live in rustic conditions and be physically fit enough for multiple days of paddling, and carrying boats and gear while in camp.  Participants must also be trained composers (professionals, university faculty members, or students currently enrolled in a university composition program) with experience preparing their own manuscripts and writing chamber or electroacoustic music for various instruments.  This is not a "class" or "workshop" in that there is no instruction included (although we all learn from each other). Instead, it is a guided adventure trip for composers.

WHO ARE THE PERFORMERS?

Katie Cox: flute, Ken Thomson: clarinet, Mariel Roberts: cello, Andie Springer: violin, Conrad Winslow: piano, Owen Weaver: Vibraphone

The Festival's new music ensemble is called Corvus and it is made up of seasoned new music experts, many of whom are from New York City.  More information about Corvus on the ABOUT link above.

What will it be like?

We've never done this before... and details are still being ironed out... but we're planning on:  

  • An opening day in Anchorage (various activities).

  • Scenic train ride followed by a half-day hike.

  • Kayaking in Prince William Sound for roughly five days.

  • Three days of intense composing time in secluded location.

  • Lots and Lots of fun, inspiration, adventure, and friendship.

Kayaking will be moderately strenuous, in two-person expedition-style boats, covering distances of approximately 5-12 miles per day and stretches of 2-3 hours at a time between breaks out of the boat. No previous kayaking experience necessary. Hiking mostly includes exploratory walks along very uneven beach terrain and creek beds as there is thick underbrush and no trails above high tide line. Participants will participate in loading and unloading kayaks as well as carrying boats and group gear short distances on uneven terrain.  

The entire course takes place outdoors and activities will continue rain or shine. Weather conditions are unpredictable in Prince William Sound and generally include precipitation. You must be prepared for a wide range of conditions. Temperatures can vary from near freezing to 80 degrees F.

WILL I BE SAFE?

Yes! (Bearing in mind that you are choosing to come to a wilderness area with wild animals, open water, glaciers, and steep mountains.) At all stages of this trip, you'll be accompanied by naturalists and experienced guides whose job is to make sure you are safe and well-fed. You wouldn't be interested if you didn't want an adventure, right? 


  THE FAIRBANKS SUMMER ARTS FESTIVAL 's mission is to provide highly qualified guest artists who offer multidisciplinary study and performance opportunities that increase both personal growth and arts appreciation to all participants. Our philosophy is to enrich the lives of all with whom we associate—through study and performances—by engaging their spirit, intellect and energy in an empowering way.

THE FAIRBANKS SUMMER ARTS FESTIVAL's mission is to provide highly qualified guest artists who offer multidisciplinary study and performance opportunities that increase both personal growth and arts appreciation to all participants. Our philosophy is to enrich the lives of all with whom we associate—through study and performances—by engaging their spirit, intellect and energy in an empowering way.

  PRINCE WILLIAM SOUND:  Kayakers sit spellbound as they witness orcas slicing still ocean waters. Towering blue-white glaciers slowly grind to the sea. The rugged lands and water of the Sound challenge both spirit and body. This location will be a perfect source of musical inspiration.

PRINCE WILLIAM SOUND: Kayakers sit spellbound as they witness orcas slicing still ocean waters. Towering blue-white glaciers slowly grind to the sea. The rugged lands and water of the Sound challenge both spirit and body. This location will be a perfect source of musical inspiration.

  FEDERAL HALL NATIONAL MEMORIAL : Your compositions will be premiered in the financial district of New York City in this stunning marble rotunda. Managed by the National Park Service, its storied history and elegant interior make the perfect counterpoint to the wilderness of Alaska where your pieces were inspired.

FEDERAL HALL NATIONAL MEMORIAL: Your compositions will be premiered in the financial district of New York City in this stunning marble rotunda. Managed by the National Park Service, its storied history and elegant interior make the perfect counterpoint to the wilderness of Alaska where your pieces were inspired.


Applications will be accepted through October 15, 2018.
We hope to announce the selected composers on November 1 by the latest.