Robert Kyr,  University of Oregon Professor of Composition and Theory, with students in his class. Photo credit: Jack Liu

Ode to the Future

The Eugene Symphony has received a National Endowment of the Arts grant, which funds a year-long  composition project for young Oregon composers. Under the guidance of Robert Kyr, nationally recognized composer and University of Oregon Professor of Composition and Theory, five high-school student composers from Oregon will collaborate with Kyr and UO graduate composition students to co-create a new work based on the iconic Ode to Joy from Ludwig van Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony. Eugene Symphony will perform the resulting theme and variations at the Symphony’s November 17, 2016  concert at the Hult Center for the Performing Arts.

Congratulations to the five students chosen to participate in Ode to the Future.

Marissa Lane-Massee, Keizer

Cayla Bleoaja, North Bend

Joseph Miletta, Salem

Wesley Coleman, Springfield

Katie Palka, Beaverton

 About the project
Ode to the Future 
commences with the May 12, 2016 world premiere of Robert Kyr’s new Piano Concerto, specially commissioned by Eugene Symphony on the occasion of the orchestra’s 50th Anniversary. Five high school students, selected through a competitive statewide application process, will study the score of Kyr’s concerto, attend rehearsals and the concert, and participate in discussions about the genesis of the concerto. The concert also features the orchestra performing Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, which participating students will use as the basis for their composed work.

Following the May concert, UO graduate students will mentor the selected high school students under Kyr’s guidance to compose an orchestral “theme and variations” based on Beethoven's Ode to Joy. Kyr will give composition master classes to participating students throughout the creative process. The work will be premiered on Eugene Symphony’s November 2016 subscription concert at the Hult Center for the Performing Arts.


For more information, please contact Education Director Mollibeth Cox at

541-687-9487 ext. 116 or

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