Under the direction of Festival composer-in-residence David Ludwig, the Young Composers Seminar brings together some of the country’s most outstanding young composers. They are immersed in the culture of the Festival, interacting with the Festival staff, musicians, donors and audience members. Admission to the Seminar is by invitation.

During their week at the Festival they meet with local arts-community leaders and Festival staff to discuss arts management, fundraising, repertoire programming, and teaching artistry. In addition, each young composer creates a new work for the Festival, which is read and recorded by Festival artists. Students leave the Festival with a professional quality recording of their work, as well as newly acquired skills that will help them in their chosen profession. Each year, the Festival commissions a new piece by an alum of the Young Composers Seminar. 

 2017 Young Composers with David Ludwig and Distinguished Guest Composer Augusta Read Thomas.

2017 Young Composers with David Ludwig and Distinguished Guest Composer Augusta Read Thomas.

 Resident Composer David Ludwig with Guest Composers Joan Tower, Nina Young, Emily Cooley and Pierre Jalbert at the FlynnSpace, 8/24/16

Resident Composer David Ludwig with Guest Composers Joan Tower, Nina Young, Emily Cooley and Pierre Jalbert at the FlynnSpace, 8/24/16

Meet the 2017 Young Composers

Elise Arancio

Elise Arancio (b. 2001) is a composer based in Atlanta. In 2014 she made her debut with the premiere of her string orchestra piece Fly By Night at Emory University. Since then she has attended summer programs at Interlochen Center for the Arts and the Curtis Institute of Music, where she has participated in masterclasses with composers such as Joan Tower and John Mackey. Her piece On the Line was a winner of the 2016 National Young Composer’s Challenge. The piece Kuma Lisa, premiered at the Curtis Institute of Music, was a finalist in the 2017 BMI Student Composer Awards and earned an honorable mention in the Tribeca New Music Young Composers Competition and the NextNotes High School Composition Competition. In 2017 she served as a judge for the Violettes Composition Competition, and she currently studies with Richard Prior of Emory University. She is also an active violist currently studying with Yinzi Kong of the Vega Quartet.  

Aiyana Braun

Aiyana Tedi Braun (b. 1997) is a composer and pianist from Ardmore, Pennsylvania. She currently attends the Curtis Institute of Music in the composition studio of Dr. Jennifer Higdon; during her time at Curtis, she will also study with Dr. Richard Danielpour and Dr. David Ludwig. Aiyana had her first orchestral composition premiered by the New York Philharmonic in May of 2013 when she was 15 years old. She also had an orchestral work performed by members of the New York Youth Symphony and Da Capo Players the following year. She has also written two orchestral works for the Curtis Symphony Orchestra. Aiyana was a Teaching Artist Intern and Teaching Artist Associate in the New York Philharmonic’s Very Young Composer’s “Bridge Program” from 2013-2015. She was in the New York Youth Symphony’s Composition Program from 2013-2014. She attended the Juilliard Pre-College Division from 2011-2015 where she studied composition with Dr. Manuel Sosa. She was a winner of the American Composer’s Forum “NextNotes” competition in 2015, and Aiyana was featured on the National Public Radio program, "From the Top” in 2016. Aiyana was very honored to be a 2017 recipient of the BMI Student Composer Awards.


Alistair Coleman (b. 1999) is a composer from Washington, DC. Most recently, he was appointed the Composer-in-Residence of the National Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorale. His piece, Of Radiance and Light, was commissioned by the National Philharmonic and premiered at Strathmore Hall in November 2016. His music has been programmed broadly, including performances by the Atlantic Music Festival Orchestra, Houston Brass Band, Boston University Marsh Chapel Choir, Takoma String Ensemble, and the Cathedral Choral Society.

With three published works, Alistair is the youngest composer ever published by E.C. Schirmer. He has received awards from the American Composers Forum, National YoungArts Foundation, Symphony Number One, and NAfME. He received an honorable mention in the 2017 ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Awards.

Alistair has studied composition at the Atlantic Music Festival, Curtis Young Artists Summer Program, Oberlin Summer Composition Workshop, and the New York Summer Music Festival. He currently studies with Richard Danielpour and David Ludwig. In the fall of 2017, Alistair will begin undergraduate studies at The Juilliard School.

Hannah Ishizaki

Hannah Ishizaki (b. 2000) of Pittsburgh PA is the youngest female composer ever to have a world premiere with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO). Her composition City of Bridges was played by the PSO at the February 2017 Fiddlesticks concert. In 2016 and 2017, Hannah was named an Emerging Composer in the Tribeca New Music’s Young Composer Competition Division II for her chamber works: Chronicles and The Hypothetical Machine. The Hypothetical Machine was premiered by Face the Music in Brooklyn, NY, in November 2016, during the Mata Jr. Festival. In 2015, she won the inaugural Pittsburgh Philharmonic’s Young Composer Contest for her orchestral work The Variance of a Trio, which was premiered in March 2015.

Hannah is also a violinist and an aspiring conductor. She is currently the co-concertmaster of the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra, where she has performed since 2013. As a chamber musician, Hannah is the first violin of the Imperial Quartet. They won the Montgomery Fellowship for 2016-2017. Previously, she was the first violin for the Penn Quartet. They won the Montgomery Fellowship for 2015-2016 and the Pittsburgh Concert Society Young Artists Competition. She won the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra 2015-16 Conducting Competition judged by Maestro Leonard Slatkin.

Andrew Moses

Andrew Moses (b. 1999) is a composer and clarinetist from Los Angeles, CA. His compositions have been performed by ensembles such as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), wild Up, the Los Angeles Master Chorale, the Argus Quartet, and the Calder Quartet. Andrew was awarded a Composition Fellowship with the Los Angeles Philharmonic 2013-2015, and continued in 2015-2016 as a Senior Fellow. As a clarinetist, he was winner of the 2014 Young Musicians Foundation National Concerto Competition, the Beverly Hills National Auditions, and the Midland National Young Artist Competition. Andrew's recent performance with the LA Philharmonic New Music Ensemble of his own at a gray sky floating between the dirt (LA Phil commission) for clarinet and chamber orchestra was described as "intricate in its orchestral interaction and coloration..." (San Francisco Classical Voice) and "reaching an audience in a compellingly direct way..." (LA Times), while his clarinet playing was described as "astonishing..." (LA Times). Past teachers include Andrew Norman and James Matheson; and he currently studies with David Ludwig at the Curtis Institute of Music. In his spare time, he enjoys taekwondo (he is a third degree blackbelt), reading and writing poetry, and his community of faith.

Feedback from YCS Graduates 

Elise Arancio, 2017:

My experience at LCCMF was unique … the incredible musicians that I was able to meet and listen to showed a passion for their music that was infectious. I learned so much from all of the wonderful talks, lectures, and meetings that provided insight into not only the music, but the minds of the players and composers. My experiences at LCCMF helped me grow so much not only as a composer but as a lover of music in general, and the specialness of this festival was evidenced by the audience’s passion and dedication for it that I’ve never seen before. When I wasn’t busy being inspired by the wonderful music and musicians at this festival, I was having so much fun in the beautiful city of Vermont with amazing food and people. I’m so glad that I was able to be a part of the LCCMF family, and I’m grateful for all of the memories that I made with them.

ian Gottlieb, 2015:

Getting my work played by such an unreal Horn Quartet was a very special experience for me as a composer. The sounding board not only provided me the opportunity to incorporate important feedback into future iterations of my composition, but also provided me an excellent recording to showcase on my website. Additionally, I was smitten by the warmth of the Burlington community and their passion for classical music, especially my dear hosts, the Bergerons! Lastly, it was a pleasure to get to learn about fundraising from the inimitable John Canning, who is undoubtedly the most down to earth and approachable patron of the arts I’ve ever met. 

Philip Golub, 2012:

This has been a week I will remember in detail for a very long time. I’ve learned a ton, all sorts of things, specific and general, both relating to composition and music itself and also concerning a skill set I feel much more aware of needing to cultivate now. Thank you for the commitment and care you put into the young composers, it’s really remarkable to feel that.  Anyway, “special”, in every possible way, is the word I would use to describe the last nine days. A general great feeling carries over it all, so thanks for making that possible.

Andrés Martinez de Velasco, 2011:

When I was invited to the Lake Champlain Chamber Music Festival, I thought it would be a great experience but the reality of it far surpassed my expectations. It’s very rare that a composer as young as I am gets the opportunity to work with musicians of such a high level, and even rarer to find that those outstanding musicians are some of the kindest, most helpful and caring people around. Working with them on my own music really helped me realize my compositional strengths and weaknesses and being a part of the festival in general showed me what the reality of the music world is. It gave me a chance to see all the work that is required to put on a successful concert beyond the actual writing or playing of music; these are the types of things you don’t learn how to do at school such as giving lectures, pre-concert talks, preparing and setting up concerts, etc. The LCCMF was an amazing experience and challenge and I am looking forward to future encounters with all the people involved in it.

David Bloom, 2009:

Any music festival that breaks the standard model takes a significant risk, which is something I believe that the founders of Lake Champlain Chamber Music Festival knew very well.  They whole-heartedly took the risk to innovate, breaking the traditional barriers to include students, actively involve audiences, and create intellectually stimulating programs.

As anyone who attended a part of LCCMF knows, these efforts were answered with great success.  We packed the halls for every astonishing concert; we listened intently to the words of the musicians and asked them questions; the Vermont Youth Orchestra and the Young Writers Project became integral members of the festival.  These were only a few of the successes that we enjoyed.  Perhaps the most memorable parts of the week were the incredibly refined and moving performances, but they were by no means the most important.  The most important aspect of this festival, I believe, was the ethic of community involvement that stood at the core of the festival’s mission.

Festival Commissions from YCS Graduates

Settle, 2016, for piano quartet
Emily Cooley (YCS ‘15)

Sonatensatz, 2015, for flute, clarinet, oboe, French horn, cello, and piano
Loren Loiacono (YCS ‘13)

Fireflies, 2014, for clarinet, violin, cello, and piano
Phillip Golub (YCS ‘12)

Contemplations, 2013, for clarinet, violin, and piano
Alyssa Weinberg (YCS '09)

Brandenburg Insterstices, 2012
Gabriella Smith (YCS '10)

String Quartet, 2011
Tim Woos (YCS '09)

Young Composers Seminar Graduates


  • Elise Arancio, Atlanta, GA
  • Aiyana Tedi Braun, Curtis
  • Alistair Coleman, Juilliard
  • Hannah Ishizaki, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Andrew Moses, Curtis


  • John Boggs, University of Michigan
  • Hyerim Yoo, Royal Academy of Music, London


  • Emily Cooley, Curtis
  • Viet Cuong, Princeton
  • Ian Gottlieb, Yale
   YC ’09 Alum Alyssa Weinburg with the 2013 Young Composers    Photo: Mary Scollins

YC ’09 Alum Alyssa Weinburg with the 2013 Young Composers
Photo: Mary Scollins


  • TJ Cole, Curtis
  • Chelsea Komschiles, Univ. of Colorado
  • Niels Verosky, Swarthmore


  • Loren Loiacono, Cornell
  • Rene Orth, Curtis
  • Riho Esko Maimets, Curtis


  • Serena Creary, Oberlin
  • Tamzin Ferré Elliott, Bard
  • Phillip Golub, Harvard and NEC


   Composer-in-Residence David Ludwig with the 2011 Young Composers    Photo: Michael GW Stein

Composer-in-Residence David Ludwig with the 2011 Young Composers
Photo: Michael GW Stein

  • Katerina Kramarchuk, Curtis
  • Zach Sheets, Harvard
  • Andrés Martinez de Valasco, Bard


  • Molly Joyce, Julliard
  • Dylan Mattingly, Bard
  • Joshua Morris, Oberlin
  • Gabriella Smith, Curtis


  • David Bloom, Bard
  • Daniel Shapiro, Curtis
  • Alyssa Weinberg, Vanderbilt
  • Tim Woos, Curtis