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Biography: Anne Kilstofte

From symphonic to solo works, elegiac or energetic, Anne Kilstofte’s music fills the room with illumination of color. Kilstofte, born in Arizona, has been highly praised for her vocal and instrumental work. Her work has been performed internationally to great acclaim throughout Europe, Asia, Australia, and North America. She has received awards and honors from national and regional institutions throughout the United States including the American Composers Forum, the Jerome Foundation, the McKnight Foundation, the Fulbright Foundation, and the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP).

She served as composer in residence and assistant professor at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota, for twelve years, and recently completed a Faith Partners Composer Residency in Minnesota, her second through the American Composers Forum of Minnesota before moving to Arizona to devote herself to composition full-time. Her most recent international performances included a symphonic piece performed at the Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing, China and a large wind ensemble work premiered in Italy, by the historically prominent Carabinieri Band of Italy as well as choral performances in Canada and the Netherlands in 2008 and China in 2009..

In 2004 she was named a Fulbright Senior Scholar to spend an entire year in Estonia where she taught composition and workshops, researched the music of communist and post-communist Estonia and composed several works at the Estonian Academy of Music in Tallinn, Estonia. Her work culminated with a concert and compact disc of some of her choral and pipe organ works. Also during that time she lectured on her music at Oldenburg University in Oldenburg, Germany and traveled throughout northern Europe. Her work Christmas Reflections was performed in 2006 by the Borealis Brass at nine venues throughout Rome and surrounding areas of Italy under the auspices of Donne in Musica. She was international composer-in-residence with the Stockholm String Quartet in 1993 and again in 2000 and wrote two string quartets for the ensemble during that time..

Of her choral works, many of her works have been commissioned and performed by elite Minnesota ensembles with international reputations. She has twice been commissioned to write for The Dale Warland Singers, and adjudicated the Choral Ventures Reading sessions for DWS for three years. Her works have also been performed by Philip Brunelle, Axel Theimer and St. John’s University/College of St. Benedict and Kantorei, and annually at the Basilica of St. Mary through several commissions with music director Teri Larson. Her music is often heard by over 10,000 people during the Christmas season, through numerous performances. The audience numbers increase substantially when listing works that are regularly broadcast and web cast internationally through radio programs in Europe and the United States. Her choral works have been presented at MENC and ACDA national and regional conventions since 1992, as well as at the British Choral Directors Association. The National Lutheran Choir, who commissioned a work of her in 2003, has made three recordings of the commissioned work, Children of Peace, and were the first to sponsor her work Oh, Hush Thee, for publication and recording through Augsburg Fortress..

Her years of work in Minnesota were distinguished by awards from the Jerome Foundation, two McKnight Fellowships, (1994-1995, 1999-2000) two Minnesota State Arts Board Fellowships, (1996, 2000) a Bush Artist Fellowship, (1997-1998) three grants from the American Composers Forum for Music in Motion, (2006) music for dance; a subito grant, (2007) also for a dance work, and she was one of the first composers to receive the Faith Partners Consortium Grant and a subsequent grant nearly 10 years later (1993-1995, 2007-2008)..

Her works have been premiered or performed at the International Festival of Women Composers in Indiana, Pennsylvania in 1995, 1997, 2005, and 2008. Her set of miniatures based on Arizona landscapes, was premiered in 2008 in Pennsylvania, and two of the miniatures were featured in "50 in 50" at the College Music Society National Conference in Atlanta, Georgia in September 2008..

Dr. Kilstofte is not only a composer and educator but also a mentor and advocate of new music and the work of women in music, which has been seen in her volunteer efforts with the International Alliance for Women in Music, the American Composers Forum, and the Society of Composers, Incorporated. As president of the International Alliance for Women in Music and coordinator of the Beijing Congress for Women in Music, she brought together more than five continents of women composers, musicologists, and performers in five days of events and concerts held at the Chinese Conservatory of Music, the National Performing Arts Center, and the Forbidden City Concert Hall in 2008. She has served for two years as president, three years as vice president, and seven years on the board of directors of that organization. She is now serving as past president on the board of IAWM. She previously served on the board of directors of the American Composers Forum from 1991-1997 and on the governance committee from 1998-2007..

Although a composer comfortable in all genres, she has become a tremendous advocate of sacred music and was invited to begin a blog in August 2008, for sacred music composers through the American Music Center. She has served as a composer/mentor in the Mentor Connection Program (1996-1997) in a county program for gifted high school students in Minnesota, to help create a bridge between professional composers and students. She also served in a pilot program (1998) through the Perpich Center for the Arts and the American Composers Forum in a program, which paired middle-school teachers with professional composers to guide the teachers in helping middle school students create new music..

Commissions have included the National Conference on the works of Poet Laureate John Berryman, (1989) the 150th anniversary of Hamline University, (2004) American Lutheran Church, the National Lutheran Choir, Randolph-Macon College Women’s Choir in the 400th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown, (2007) the National Forestry Association, (1996) the Stockholm String Quartet, Estonian Camerata, Donne in Musica, Borealis Brass Octet, Entourage Eclat, and the Arapahoe Philharmonic..

Dr. Kilstofte has served as an adjudicator for Minnesota Music Educators Association, the Minnesota State Arts Board, Minnesota Music Teachers Association, the Minnesota Orchestra Student Concerto Awards, adjudicated and re-instituted the Eliza Drew Composition Prize of Hamline University, the Fulbright Scholars Program, and conducted the Search for New Music for the IAWM.

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