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Students to create music inspired by campus art exhibit for annual competition

  • "Yellow Fields with Twisted Oaks" by Herbert Murrie

Posted on February 21, 2018

Music will meet art when Grand Valley music composition students create one-minute compositions inspired by the current Art Gallery exhibit "Ebb & Flow: Explorations in Painting by Herbert Murrie" for an upcoming competition.

The compositions will be performed by Grand Valley's award-winning New Music Ensemble in rapid succession and judged by a guest panel and the listening audience for various prizes.

The annual New Music Ensemble Composition Competition will take place March 1 at 7:30 p.m. in the Art Gallery (room 1121), located in the Thomas J. and Marcia J. Haas Center for Performing Arts.

"Since the beginnings of music, composers have often based their music on imagery," said Bill Ryan, New Music Ensemble director and professor of composition. "This is an opportunity for our student composers to respond to specific pieces of art, and to try to effectively convey their ideas in the span of only 60 seconds."

"Ebb & Flow" explores Murrie's creative process as an artist and includes 26 pieces that span his career as a painter from 1995 to the present, including newer works. The exhibit features artwork from both private collections and Grand Valley's permanent art collection, which includes 16 works that were donated by Murrie and his wife, Lisa Murrie, in 2015.

"Ebb & Flow" will be on display through March 30. For more information about the competition or exhibition, visit