Testimonials

(Open invitation, alums!  Feel free to send us your comments!)

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"Composing In The Wilderness is a life changing event no matter who you are. For some, it’s a springboard to a nature-inspired course in their career. To others, it’s a welcomed disturbance in their regular artistic process. All in all, the inconceivable beauty of the Alaskan backcountry is only rivaled by the genuine kindness of the people you meet there."

Brent Lawrence (Participant, 2017)

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"Composing in the Wilderness took me out of myself and opened me up to listen – really listen – to the world around me in whole new way. One year on and I'm still full of inspiration from the experience!"

David John Lang (Participant, 2016)

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“I envy the people who are applying for the first time! Go with your eyes and your heart wide open and tropical strength DEET distributed evenly over your skin. It’s going to change your life. I loved every moment of Composing in the Wilderness. I loved the great group of composers and performers involved, the unearthly beauty of Denali, being taught to understand the extraordinary magic of lichen, the weird half light at midnight, and a glimpse of the poetry of the place. Steve and the NPS scientists are wonderful teachers and humans and you will probably see bears and a moose or two.”

Gemma Peacocke (Participant, 2016)

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"The experience has been one of profound impact that has formulated a single path for me that had been two different worlds throughout my life. I’ve always been a naturalist and an environmentalist, and I’ve always been a composer and musician. The course combined those in a very present, dramatic, exponential way."

Stephen Wood (Participant 2012, 2013, 2014)

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"There’s no doubt that Composing in the Wilderness is one of the best damn things I ever did. It proved to me in a big way that art, like a truly-lived life, is not for sissies; it might just wrench your soul right out of you to make it, but the hole it leaves will fill right up with wonder if you let it."

Jennifer Wright (Participant, 2017)

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"At Composing in the Wilderness, I am my truest self, both as a composer and as a person"

Christina Rusnak (Participant, 2012, 2013, 2017)

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“For me, participating in Composing in the Wilderness was life changing. As a full time film and tv composer it’s often difficult to dig deeper into concert music and having the time in Denali followed by intense composing time made me re-examine my process and sensibility altogether. I had always wanted to visit Alaska and this couldn’t have been a more amazing experience.”

Cody Westheimer (Participant, 2015)

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"Composing in the Wilderness simultaneously developed my self-confidence and humility. I learned what I was capable of achieving creatively and physically while Alaska and an introduction to some of the most brilliant and creative people I've ever met, reminded me of my place in this very big world in which we live. It was also just plain fun!"

Jeanette Wong (Participant, 2015)

Recent Articles

Composers Go Into the Wild and Come Home Transformed (Sharps and Flatirons, Colorado)

Murray Bridge Musician Jesse Budel Flies Into Alaskan Wilderness (Murray Valley Standard, Australia)

Composing in the Wilderness 1: Tundra Tapestry (Oregon Arts Watch)

Composing in the Wilderness 2: On Distant Hills (Oregon Arts Watch)

Composing in the Wilderness 3: Song of Beginnings (Oregon Arts Watch)

Denali Park Wilderness Inspires Composers (Golden Valley Electric Magazine)

From the Murray to the Yukon (Resonate Magazine from the Australian Music Centre)