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Composer Don Freund receives Guggenheim award

The School of Music congratulates composer and Professor of Music Don Freund who was recently named a 2005 Guggenheim Fellow. Three additional Guggenheim Fellows named this year are also from Indiana University: biologists Lynda Delph and Jeffrey Palmer, and historian Michael Grossberg. In addition, Guggenheim awards were previously awarded to two IU School of Music Composition faculty members Professor of Music and Executive Associate Dean Eugene O'Brien, and Professor of Music Claude Baker.

The prestigious award is perhaps the most affirming research award worldwide for artists, humanists and scientists. Having known about the news for a few weeks prior to the public announcement, Freund has had time to consider the impact it will make. "There are many things that have been stirring in me for a number of years that I've put on the back burner while taking care of teaching and other duties in the School of Music. The award gives me an exciting opportunity to devote myself fully to projects that I've thus far only dreamed about."

Freund's commitment to working in the Bloomington community, with musicians of all kinds, has born a substantial number of performances ranging from full-scale orchestral compositions, wind ensemble pieces, to works for childrens' choir. He talks of the affirmation these projects have given him. "I feel very much appreciated in Bloomington. Interest in the performing ensembles here in the School and elsewhere have been an enormous source of inspiration and affirmation." The addition of the Guggenheim award helps to place him firmly in the national and international sphere. "To receive something like this from the outside makes the appreciation of my works much more substantial."

With the time and financial resources the award offers, Freund will spend this summer reorganizing professional priorities. His compositional interest has often looked outwards to theatrical ventures. The creative months ahead will be spent research "fascinating compositional issues… I will have time to search deeper into interests that will have an impact on composing. I plan to spend time looking at theatrical expressions in music, possibly in opera theater. There are a number of poets and librettists that I plan to approach, people who are aligned to my way of thinking about words and music."

We wish him the very best in the exciting times ahead!