Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra Announces 2018-19 Composer in Residence
Ben Ash to fill the inaugural role
PARK FOREST, MAY 14, 2018 - On Tuesday, May 8, 2018, three promising young composers joined IPO for the premiere of their original works, submitted for the Classical Evolve competition. At the end of the evening, combining the audience and musicians' votes with the judges panel votes, Maestro Stilian Kirov announced  Ben Ash  as the  2018-19 IPO Composer in Residence. His winning composition is titled Hraun and is based on an Icelandic legend.

"We are excited to work with this year’s winner, Ben Ash, as he joins us as our Composer in Residence for the 2018-19 season," said Maestro Kirov. "One of the main goals of the Illinois Philharmonic is to nurture the development of young musicians, and we are hopeful that as our Classical Evolve continues through the future seasons, we will be helpful to many young American composers to find their artistic voice and make the first steps in the professional music scene."

During his tenure as Composer in Residence, Mr. Ash will have the opportunity to write three original compositions that will be premiered at three IPO concerts next season, the first being IPO's 41st season Opening Night on October 20, 2018.

Ben Ash is a 2014 New York University graduate in Music Theory and Composition. His music has been performed in New York and Seattle and at festivals such as Maine's Atlantic Music Festival. He has written the music for several films, including the documentary "Coming Out" by filmmaker Alden Peters, which won Best Documentary at Festival MIX in Milan, Italy. He also received a commission from the Seattle Youth Symphony to write a concert opener for their 2016/2017 season. Entitled "Collide-o-Scope," the 15 minute-long work was performed on March 12, 2017, at Benaroya Hall.

In 2018 Ben was selected as one of 10 finalists in the Berlin International Film Scoring Competition, as well as one of 3 finalists (along with named runner up Saad Haddad and Conor Mackey) for IPO’s inaugural Classical Evolve composer residency competition. He will begin the masters program for Film Score Composition at the Seattle Film Institute in the Fall of 2018.
About Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra
Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra is celebrating its 40th Anniversary Season in 2017-
18. From its community orchestra roots in Park Forest, the 64-member orchestra
has grown into a critically acclaimed professional regional orchestra.
Under the leadership of Music Director Stilian Kirov and Executive Director Christina
Salerno, the mission of IPO is to provide concerts of compelling professional
symphonic music, support music education, and expand audience awareness of
musical excellence for the diverse communities of the greater Chicago region.
Beginning in the 2017-18 season, IPO will perform six classical concerts at their new
single venue, Ozinga Chapel at Trinity Christian College in Palos Heights. A five
concert, small ensemble summer series is held at Ravisloe Country Club on
Wednesday nights in June, July and August. In addition, the orchestra performs four
educational youth concerts each year, serving over 4,000 students in the Chicago

Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra is supported in part by: Bimba Manufacturing,
Michuda Construction, Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelly Foundation, Gerhard
Designing & Manufacturing, Inc., WFMT, and in part by a grant from the Illinois Arts
Council Agency.

For more information, visit or call 708.481.7774.

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