2019 Events

Discover New Venues, Exciting Music Creators, and Cutting-Edge Thought at the First Ever Compose LA
Stay up-to-date on all the latest Compose LA concerts and events at culturela.org.

ACF-LA announces the inaugural Compose LA Festival, Feb 6-27. As led by the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), the festival launches as a platform to showcase LA’s contemporary composers, innovative music artists, dynamic thought-leaders, and engaging music spaces.The festival will feature LA-based composers Nicole Mitchell, James Leary, Juan Pablo Contreras, Reena Esmail, Derrick Spiva Jr, Liam Mooney, Alima Jennings, Quetzal Flores, Ted Hearne, Sarah Gibson, Billy Childs, Julia Adolphe, Juhi Bansal, Andrew Norman, and more.

ACF-LA President Steven Homestead remarks, “With the creative renaissance that we’ve seen in LA recently, it’s an exciting time to amplify the vibrant dialogue that LA’s composers, performers, and venues have been developing.”

From major concert venues to hidden underground spaces to site-specific happenings,Compose LA will feature some of the city’s most interesting and culturally significant spaces/neighborhoods that are both on and off the radar of the general public. Spaces include The World Stage, Coaxial, Clockshop, the Japanese American Cultural/Community Center, Self-Help Graphics, Hammer Museum, The Bootleg, Lodge Room, and more.

As a unique aspect of the festival, each concert will include a humanities element, pairing ideas in music with ideas in the greater humanities field as presented by leading professors from across the state. The inaugural Compose LA Festival launches with the theme: What is Human, and What is Race?, kicking off with a symposium produced by UCLA’s Center for Music Innovation titled “The Future(s) of Music in Los Angeles.”

Compose LA formed in a collaboration between the DCA’s Performing Arts Division, the American Composers Forum of Los Angeles, the University of California Humanities Research Institute at UC Irvine, the Center for Music Innovation at The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music, and several curatorial partners throughout the city.



Having supported the vision of Compose LA throughout its development, ACF-LA is proud to be co-producing a concert/event on Monday February 25th along with Kensington Presents. The evening will feature the music of composers Derrick Spiva Jr, Reena Esmail, and Juan Pablo Contreras, performed by two leading L.A. ensembles, Salastina Music Society and Bridge to Everywhere. The concert will be enriched through an interstitial discussion led by Katherine In-Young Lee, Assistant Professor of Ethnomusicology at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music.

And check out a few of Compose LA’s other events that intersect —Spider Web with Nicole Mitchell and Josh Kun on February 9 and the symposium Future(s) of Music in Los
Angeles February 6, from among the dozen concerts and events in February.

Join as ACF-LA Inaugurates a New Lifetime Achievement Award

ACF-LA invites you to join in to celebrate and honor the internationally acclaimed composer Thea Musgrave with the inauguration of a lifetime achievement award, presented by ACF National Board Chair, Anne LeBaron and ACF-LA President, Steven Homestead.



FEB 23, 8PM

Get Tickets Here

Join us for a pre-concert talk with Ms. Musgrave and composer Jack Van Zandt, beginning at 7:15PM.

Boston Court celebrates the 90th birthday of the internationally renowned Scottish composer, Thea Musgrave, with a concert featuring The Eclipse Quartet, Mark Robson, and a host of luminous guests.


Maggie Parkins, Cello
Alma Lisa Fernandez, Viola
Sara Parkins, Violin
Sarah Thornblade, Violin
Stacy Fraser, Soprano
Brian Walsh, Clarinet
Mark Robson, Pianist
Nicholas Daniel, Oboe, English Horn, and Conductor


All works composed by Thea Musgrave

Niobe (1987)
Nicholas Daniel, Oboe

DES (2017)
Maggie Parkins, Cello

Elegy (1970)
Alma Fernandez, Viola; Maggie Parkins, Cello

Threnody (1997)
Nicholas Daniel, English Horn; Mark Robson, Piano

Cantilena (2008)
Nicholas Daniel, Oboe; The Eclipse String Quartet


Presentation of American Composers Forum L.A.’s First Lifetime Achievement Award to Thea Musgrave

Monologue (1960)
Mark Robson, Piano

A Suite O’Bairnsangs (1953)
Stacey Fraser, Soprano; Mark Robson, Piano

Pierrot (1985)
Brian Walsh, Clarinet; Sara Parkins, Violin; Mark Robson, Piano



2018 Events

ACF-LA Presents Nadia Shpachenko at the Pasadena Museum of History

During Pasadena’s Spring 2018 ArtNight

ACF-LA presents multiple GRAMMY® nominated pianist Nadia Shpachenko at the Pasadena Museum of History for the Pasadena’s Spring 2018 ArtNight, held in conjunction with a new exhibit “Dreaming the Universe.” Pulling from repertoire by ACF-LA members and composers nation-wide, Nadia will present pieces for keyboard, electronics, and toy piano in a preview of the following evening’s People Inside Electronics concert.
Friday, March 10, 2018, 6-10PM
With Four, 30-Minute Performances at 6:30, 7:30, 8:30, & 9:30Where:
The Pasadena Museum of History (Giddings Room)
470 W. Walnut St., Pasadena, CA 91103The bi-annual ArtNight included dozens of spaces and cultural institutions with free programming and performances and free event-specific public transportation just for the evening.


​Conversations in Collaborative Creativity
March 10th @ 10am

ACF-LA is hosting its second community discussion at OCCCA. Come to connect with other composers and creatives and join in as paelists discussion creativity and collaboration to inspire and inform your creative practice. Featuring guest…

Nzuji De Magalhaes is a mixed media artist born and raised in Angola whose work explores the exchange between African and American cultures, bringing forward issues of gender, child labor, and the experience of minority communities in the United States and abroad.

Collin Russell creates sonic gestures using recorded and synthesized audio to create an ambiance that transforms the listener’s perspective on what sound should be, and more importantly, what sound could be. Collin is the Director of Technical Support at Qu-Bit, a Southern California based modular synthesizer manufacturer.

Moderated by Steven Homestead, ACF-LA President
Presented by ACF-LA // Hosted by OCCCA

Orange County Center for Contemporary Art
117 North Sycamore Street
Santa Ana, CA 92701

To Register and for More Info visit the Eventbrite or Facebook Pages.



Nadia Shpachenko, People Inside Electronics (PIE)

Saturday March 10th, 2018, 8pm
Nadia Shpachenko, piano


Nadia Shpachenko presents a varied and adventurous program of music for piano and electronics by Tom Flaherty, Annie Gosfield, Vera Ivanova, Isaac Schankler, Alex Temple, Jack Van Zandt, and Julia Wolfe, with special guest Rachel Beetz on flute.
Featuring select compositions from Shpachenko’s upcoming April release “Quotations and Homages.”More Info on PIE and the Concert


Part of the Boca De Oro Festival
Saturday, March 3rd
Creating with Text and Music

Join in for a unique discussion and workshop as three composers share thoughts and insights from their own practices on creating with text and music. This interactive event will also include live, in-the-moment composing of vocal music, as the composers set crowd-sourced poetry from the audience to music and guest vocalists in a unique pop-up performance.

Date and Time
Sat, March 3, 2018
6:00 PM – 8:00 PMLocation
AvantGarden Gallery
417 North Broadway
Santa Ana, CA 92701
Free Eventbrite Registration and More Info
Note: Boca De Oro Runs from 12-10 at Locations throughout the City
For map and full schedule, visit Boca de Oro

Join ACF-LA at the 17th Annual New Music Festival
5 Days of Concerts, Lectures, and Events!

We’ll be celebrating Thea Musgrave in conversation and through her music and sharing around the festival’s theme: Music Across Borders.In addition, concerts will feature music by ACF-LA members, including Vera Ivanova and the world premiere of Pamela Madsen’s “There Will Come Soft Rains.”

Dr. Pamela Madsen, Artistic Director // Feb. 21-25, 2018Saturday, Feb. 24, Day
Composer-Performer Symposium
10am-6pm // Recital Hall
800 N State College Blvd
Fullerton, CA 92831Free admission

10-12pm: Moscow Contemporary Music Ensemble: Workshop/Score Reading/MasterClass
12pm: John Koegel-Musicologist: Latin American Music in Los Angeles
12:45pm: Charles Sharp-Ethnomusicologist: Improvisation and Music Across Borders
1:30pm: ACF-LA: Conversation with Thea Musgrave, Jack Van Zandt
3pm: Lukas Ligeti
4pm: Jen Shyu

5pm: Panel Discussion with Festival Guest Artists
Jen Shyu, Lukas Ligeti, Vera Ivanova, Members of Moscow Contemporary Music Ensemble, ACF-LA President Steven Homestead, CSUF Faculty, Pamela Madsen, John Koegel, Charles Sharp, Bill Cunliffe

Sunday, Feb. 25

University Symphony Orchestra
with the Concerto-Aria Competition Winner
Kimo Furumoto, conductor

4pm // Meng Concert Hall
800 N State College Blvd
Fullerton, CA 92831

Featuring composer Thea Musgrave
in celebration of her 90th birthday

Peter Warlock: Capriol Suite
Jean Sibelius: Romanze
Thea Musgrave: Song of the Enchanter (In homage to Sibelius)
Amy Beach: Finale from the “Gaelic” Symphony
Leonard Bernstein: Symphonic Dances from “West Side Story”
George Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue
with 2017 Music Associates Concerto-Aria Competition
Overall Grand Prize Winner: Man-Ling Bai

Saturday Feb 10, 10AM-12PM
Saturday Mar 10, 10AM-12PM

Join in as ACF-LA launches public dialogues to inform and inspire your creative practice.

As President of ACF-LA, I’m curating a number of public conversations that will feature local and global creators, curators, and composers discussing exciting projects and collaborations. The first two will be held in conjunction with OCCCA’s exhibit, “Music for Your Eyes,” from Exhibitions Director Carolyn Yarnell, juried by Peter Frank. In addition to the discussion, come to connect with other creatives and community members at these free events.

10:00-10:30AM // Coffee & Bagels
10:30-11:30AM // Discussion

117 North Sycamore
Santa Ana, CA 92701

Parking: Metered street parking and public pay lots are located adjacent to the location.

Carolyn Yarnell //

Composer and Visual Artist
Exhibitions Director, OCCCA

Pamela Madsen //
Composer, Performer, Theorist, and Curator
Professor, Music Composition/Theory, CSUF
Founder and Director of the Annual CSUF New Music Festival

Bridget Dolkas //
Violinist, Musical Entrepreneur, Educator, and Arts Organizer
Principal 2nd Violin, Pacific Symphony
Co-Curator of Sonic Kitchen

Kurt Mortensen //
Arts Administrator, Composer, and Guitarist
Director of Audience Engagement,
Pacific Symphony
Co-Curator of Sonic Kitchen

Moderated by Steven Homestead