Selected Alumni Profiles
Mark Adamo (MM Composition), is currently composer-in-residence with New York City Opera. His first opera, Little Women, based on Louisa May Alcott's novel, was a tremendous success after its premiere by Houston Grand Opera, and has since enjoyed dozens of productions. His newest opera, Lysistrata, based on the ancient Greek comedy by Aristophanes, was premiered by Houston Grand Opera in 2005 and produced by NYCO in early 2006. Mr. Adamo returned to CUA as a guest on its Visiting Composers Series in 2004.
Robert Gibson (MM Composition, 1975) was named Director of the University of Maryland School of Music in 2006, where he had previously served as Professor of Composition. Working both in acoustic and electronic composition, Dr. Gibson has remained active as both composer and performer, and his music has been performed internationally by such ensembles as the Contemporary Music Forum, 20th-Century Consort, National Symphony Bass Quartet, and many others.
Joao Guilherme Ripper (DMA Composition, 1997) was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He studied Composition and Conducting with Henrique Morelenbaum, Ronaldo Miranda e Roberto Duarte at the School of Music of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, where he also got his Master degree. In 1994, he moved to the US to pursue his doctoral studies under Helmut Braunlich and Emma Garmendia at the Catholic University of America, in Washington, D.C. Ripper served as Assistant Teacher of the Orchestration class at the CUA, and created a music program at the Adult Education Program at the Connecticut Park Center, in Montgomery County, where he taught for three years. With his Composition students, he founded the Composers Society of Montgomery County. Additional studies in orchestral conducting were held in Argentina, under Guillermo Scarabino. In 1997, he returned to Brazil and resumed his duties at the School of Music of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, where he served as Dean from 1999 to 2003.
Ripper has guest-conducted important Brazilian orchestras as the National Theater Symphony Orchestra (Brasília), Cuyo Symphony Orchestra (Mendoza-Argentina), National Symphony Orchestra (Rio de Janeiro), Sinfonia Cultura Orchestra (São Paulo) and Symphony Orchestra of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (Rio). Currently, Ripper is Music Director and Principal Conductor of the Pantanal Chamber Orchestra, in Mato Grosso do Sul. The orchestra is the leading ensemble in the region featuring a varied repertoire that ranges from the classics into popular and new Brazilian music. In December 2005, The Pantanal Chamber Orchestra toured in other Brazilian states.
Ripper's works have been performed in many concerts hall of Brazil and abroad. He wrote "Chamber Symphony for Winds" for the Catholic University Wind Ensemble in 1996. The last movement, "Brasiliana," has been featured in the repertoire of many wind ensembles . In 1999, he was commissioned by the Akron Symphony to write a symphonic work for the celebration of Brazil's 500th anniversary -- Abertura Concertante -- which was premiered in March 2000 at E.J.Thomas Hall, in Akron (OH). His chamber opera "Domitila" was awarded the best chamber work of 2000 by the National Critics Association of Brazil. His symphonic works are in the repertoire of important Brazilian orchestras. The cantata "Passio" was performed in a series of four concerts in one of the leading halls in Rio. In July 2003, his third opera "The Dark Angel" received 16 performances in São Paulo. In December 2005, the performances of "The Dark Angel" were listed in the top works of the last eight years.
Ripper is currently Director of Cecília Meireles Concert Hall in Rio and member of the Brazilian Academy of Music: an institution that gathers outstanding Brazilian composers, conductors and musicologists.
Anthony Randolph (DMA Composition, 2007) is Assistant Professor of Music at Howard University in Washington, DC.
Gregg Martin (MM Stage Music Emphasis, 2008) began studying piano at age five and at age fourteen began formal lessons in percussion. In 1990 he moved to Scranton, PA, to attend Marywood College, where he studied percussion with Steve Mathiesen. A year later he moved to Albany, NY, to attend the College of Saint Rose, where he began training in music technology and continued his percussion studies with Mark Foster. Mr. Martin graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Music Technology. After graduation, Mr. Martin began private composition instruction from Schenectady composer Timothy Luby with whom he studied for eight years. While living in Upstate New York, Mr. Martin was Director of the Mohonasen High School Percussion Ensemble (Rotterdam) from 1993-1998. Mr. Martin has received grants from the New York State Council for the Arts, Hudson Valley Community College, the American Composers Forum, the Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation, and the Eugene and Agnes Meyer Foundation. He was composer-in-residence at All Souls Church, Unitarian, in Washington D.C. 2001-2002.
He received commissions from the Trio Ventoso to compose a woodwind trio, and Sakya Phuntsok Ling to compose the "Refuge and Enlightenment Thought Prayer," for a cappella voices, for the blessed occasion of His Holiness the Sakya Trizin's Consecration of the Kunchab Ling Temple, the Sakya tradition's United States seat. He has written music for a documentary entitled "Moving Forward" and a feature film entitled "Se habla español". Currently Mr. Martin is working on an opera adapted from the Elmer Rice play, "The Adding Machine." Mr. Martin is also employed at the Catholic University of America Music Library. He is a member of the American Composers Forum, the American Music Center, the Society of Composers, BMI, and the Capital Composers Alliance. He resides in the Columbia Heights neighborhood of Washington, DC, with his wife Karyn and two children, Tara and Riley.
Visit Gregg Martin's composer website.
Roberto Abel Martinez (MM Concert Music Emphasis with Concentration in Latin American Music, 2008), born in New Mexico and raised in Texas, completed his MM in composition at The Catholic University of America. Under the tutelage of Dr. Andrew Earle Simpson, Roberto received the New Old American Songs commission, which premiered on April 5, 2006, as part of CUA's Copland Festival, as well as the annual Christmas Fanfare commission, which premieres December 1st, 2006. Roberto's teachers and mentors include Dr. James T. Bingham, Dr. Leo Nestor, and Medea Namoradze (voice). Roberto also holds a bachelor's degree in vocal performance from Columbia Union College in Takoma Park, Maryland.
Click here to listen to an mp3 file of "La Cucaracha," commissioned by the Benjamin T. Rome School of Music as part of a set of the New Old American Songs project (commissions for 10 folk song settings by 10 composers), premiered at CUA in April, 2006.
Candy Emberley (BM Composition, 2007) began making music at the age of three by banging on the piano when her mother wasn't looking. Her official studies started on piano at the age of seven and moved to viola at the age of ten. Ms. Emberley is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Music degree in composition and continues her viola studies with Ms. Jennifer Mondie. In her spare time, Ms. Emberley enjoys singing, speaking French, writing poetry, and swing and ballroom dancing.
Gabriel DiMarco (BM Composition and Cello, 2001) is a founding member of DiMensaje, an ensemble formed with his brother Matthew in the fall of 2007. He is currently is principal cellist of the Londontowne Symphony Orchestra in Maryland, a newly developed orchestra which he co-founded.
Nicolás Suárez Eyzaguirre (1997) is Professor at the Conservatorio Nacional de Música and Universidad Católica Boliviana in La Paz, Bolivia.
Alan Bonde (DMA Composition), pianist and composer, is Professor of Music at Mt. Holyoke College in Massachusetts.
David Heinick (DMA, Composition), is Professor of Music at the Crane School of Music, State University of New York College at Potsdam.