Composers Workshop IV

Sunday, May 1, 2022 at 7:30p in the Concert Hall



Look Away

Ziang HAN

Keegan Hockett, amplified bassoon
Neil Krzeski , amplified prepared piano
Ziang Han , electronics

Imagine you are having a dream, in the dream, once you look away, you lose the connection with the current world and already in another space and time, but somehow, you don’t feel this is contrary to your common sense of time...
     This composition explores my fear and dissatisfaction towards linear time sensation and physical limitations of human-being. It consists of 11 parts, each part is a different world, some of them are based on real life settings, some of them are imagined. Based on the order, they are:
“gaze upon” “the construction site” “gaze down-below” “ritual of disintegration” “disintegration” “cage” “robot’s cooking pot” “wind bridge” “the edge of limbo” “mad pope” “gaze upon”

Ziang Han is a composer. He studied piano performance and composition in China. In 2018, He came to the United States to pursue his master's degree. He has been a PhD candidate at UI since 2021.

Broken Fractals


Alex Lenaers, guitar

Broken Fractals walks through a fractal image, changing the perspective of the observer to view different portions of the image. As the perspective changes, the fractal becomes distorted and corrupted. Special thanks to Ramin Roshandel for helping guide me through writing and performing this piece.

Alex Lenaers is an undergraduate student from Dubuque, Iowa pursuing degrees in Music Composition and Computer Science.

Mattress Girl


Lex Letourneau , flute

Mattress Girl was initially commissioned by Lex Letourneau for the final recital of their master's degree, and it was performed in Fall 2021 in five separated sections throughout the entire show. What you're about to hear tonight is a revised, one-single-movement version of this piece.

     Ramin Roshandel is a PhD candidate in Music Composition at the University of Iowa, where he has studied under Josh Levine, Sivan Cohen-Elias and currently studies with David Gompper. He holds a Master of Music in Composition from the University of Tehran and a Bachelor of Arts in Iranian Music Performance from Tehran University of Art.

The Wave, for two violins

Qing XU

Junhong Zhou and Sheng-Ho Wang, violins

The idea of this violin duet was inspired by Scelsi’s approach to spectralism. The goal is to highlight the linear aspect of music by spatializing sound sources and its implicit movement. The constant changing of dynamics also creates an echo effect.

Qing Xu received her bachelor’s degree in Music Composition from Shenyang Conservatory of Music, where her piano suite was nominated finalist for the 8th Chinese Music Golden Bell Award. After graduation, she worked as an accompanist at The Northeastern Petroleum University. She is currently in the MA program in composition at the University of Iowa.

Salve Regina

A. Emrich

Siyeon Kim , soprano
Junhong Zhou , violin
ShengHo Wang , violin
Adrian Gomez Hernandez , violoncello
Kyle Coleman, continuo organ

This work is in four movements, and is a setting of a prayer called “Salve Regina (Hail Queen).” I dedicate this piece to the Blessed Virgin and her Son, to my family (including my grandmother who requested the piece), and my colleagues, teachers, and friends.

Text Translation:
I. Hail Queen, Merciful Mother
     Our life, our sweetness, and our hope, hail
II. To you we cry out, exiled children of Eve
     To you we sigh, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears
III. Come, therefore, our advocate, turn your eyes of mercy to us,
     And Jesus, blessed fruit of thy womb, show to us after our exile
IV. O clement, O pious, O sweet Virgin Mary

A. Emrich, currently pursuing a BM in music composition at the University of Iowa, has been passionate about composing music since age 16.


I Try to Pray Instead of Aching


M Denney, contralto & electronics

The voice can be a powerful thing, though, I must admit, I am still fairly new to using mine. The reasons for this are myriad, and you will probably be able to guess a few of them. Imagine what the world would be like if we met voices where they are. “I try to pray instead of aching” is a lyric from “La Chiqui” by Arca + SOPHIE.

M Denney is a performer-composer from either Washington D.C. or Los Angeles, depending on the conversation. She is a member of artist’s collective This Machine, performs with experimental guitar ensemble Trio Ampliphonic, and releases ambient and noise music as Lithops. They are currently pursuing a PhD in composition.



Neil Krzeski, piano

Sean Harken is a composer and vocalist from Iowa City. He frequently writes for the voice as well as electronics and other ensembles. He studies composition with Ramin Roshandel and voice with Stephen Swanson.

Pisces, Capricorn, Aries, Capricorn

Matthew MASON

Matt Mason, M Denney, Gregory Rowland Evans, prepared piano

Dedicated to Kate Boyd and Michael Schelle.

Matt Mason is a composer and pianist from Lincoln, Illinois. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D in Composition at the University of Iowa.



Yi-Hsun Tang, horn
Yu-Hsiang Chen, organ

Chaos in the peace, lost in the chaos, finding the true self in the lost, and peace in living with the true self.

Geng Zhang is a Chinese composer in her third year of the PhD in composition at the University of Iowa, studying with Jean-Francois Charles. She received her master’s degree in composition from Manhattan School of Music, studied with Reiko Fueting, and received bachelor’s degree from Shanghai Conservatory of Music.

group of composers post-concert
Alexis and Ramin
Salve Regina performers