Colin Holter of Minneapolis, Minnesota, created the winning composition for the University of New Mexico Robb Trust's 4th National Biennial Composer's Competition. "The Recording You Will Now Hear" for Flute/Piccolo, Clarinet/Bass Clarinet, Piano, Vibraphone, Violin, and Cello will have its premiere performance at the upcoming 2011 40th Annual John Donald Robb Composers' Symposium which will be held on the campus of UNM, March 27-30.Colin Holter is a composer of new music. Currently a doctoral student at the University of Minnesota, he holds a BA summa cum laude from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, a MMus from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and an MPhil from Brunel University. His teachers have included Richard Barrett, Franklin Cox, James Dillon, Linda Dusman, Christopher Fox, Erik Lund, Keeril Makan, and Stuart Saunders Smith. In addition to his activities as a composer, Holter writes a weekly column for NewMusicBox, the web magazine of the American Music Center. Holter is a native of Frederick, Maryland.
The UNM John Donald Robb Musical Trust was established at the University of New Mexico in 1989 by John D. and Harriet Robb. During his tenure as Dean of the College of Fine Arts at UNM, Robb's fascination with Hispanic folk music led to his collection of over 3,000 field recordings of traditional songs and dances from the American Southwest, South America and Nepal which formed the nucleus of the John Donald Robb Archive of Southwestern Music at the University of New Mexico. The Trust's Composers' Competition focuses upon Dean Robb's legacy by requiring entries to be based upon themes from the folk collection from the Robb Archives at the Center for Southwest Research in the UNM Zimmerman Library.
"The Recording You will Now Hear" takes "Cuatro Flores", a song written and performed for Dean Robb's microphone by Josefina Flores, as its source material. Mr. Holter indicates that "incorporation of "Cuatro Flores" hinges on the concept of the chamber ensemble as a recording device. Specifically, I imagined a recorder with two settings (neither capturing its subject with especially high fidelity): The first is sensitive to the source's behavior as a sound-object, the second to its valences as a culture-object. The medium's characteristic distortions are foregrounded such that "Cuatro Flores" itself is often wholly or partially out of view."
The award for the winning composition is $3,500 and includes a premiere performance at the UNM John Donald Robb Composers' Symposium. The panel of international judges included: Carlo Allessandro Landini, Professor of Music, University of Piacenza, Italy; Konrad Boehmer, Professor of Music, Royal Conservatory at the Hague, Netherlands; and Gary Smart, Yessin Professor of Music, University of North Florida, USA and a previous winner of the UNM John Donald Robb Composers' Competition.