NCMTA Commissioned Composers


Composer Commissioning Program

MTNA is dedicated to encouraging the creation of new works by American composers and annually assists affiliated state associations in the generation and performance of new music through the national composer commissioning program. Each year one state commissioned composer is selected to receive the MTNA Distinguished Composer of the Year Award.

2019 Western Carolina University

Andrew Hannon, “Eternal Soundings”

Dr. Hannon earned BM and MM degrees from Southern Illinois University, and a DMA in music composition from the University of South Carolina.

Dr. Hannon's compositions have been performed throughout the United States at the NASA National Conference, Kentucky New Music Festival, Outside the Box Music Festival, and CMS Pacific Northwest Conference. His soprano saxophone and piano composition, Eternal Enamor, is published through Dorn Publications and has been widely performed. His music is an amalgamation of many diverse influences and alternates between extreme moments of violence and serenity. Score and audio examples can be found at

As a theorist, much of his research has concentrated on the analysis of Ligeti's final composition, Hamburg Concerto. This research focuses on how Ligeti creates an expansion and contraction of the melody, harmony, and formal design in the composition.

2018 UNCSA

John Allemeier

The music of John Allemeier has been described as having a “sweet sense of mystery” by Fanfare and as being “rapturous” by the American Record Guide.  His music has been programmed on international venues such as the Frankfurter Kunstlerclub (Germany), 3rd Rencontres Musiques Nouvelles (France), Festival Internacional de Percusiones (Mexico), Russia-America: Music of the XXI Century at the Moscow Conservatory, the Seoul International Computer Music Festival (South Korea), the Brazilian Symposium on Computer Music, the International Double Reed Society, ClarinetFest (International Clarinet Society), and the International Society of Bassist Convention; and on national festivals such as Piccolo Spoleto, the 5th Annual Festival of Contemporary Music in San Francisco, and the Spark Festival in Minneapolis; on national conferences of the Society of Composers, the Society for Electro Acoustic Music in the United States, National Association of Composers in the United States, and the College Music Society.

Allemeier’s music has been performed throughout the United States and Europe by professional and collegiate ensembles such as Fresh Ink, Low and Lower, Madison Park String Quartet, Duo XXI, Due East, the Petrella Ensemble, the University of Iowa Center for New Music, the University of Iowa Graduate Chamber Orchestra, Oberlin Percussion Group, the Texas Christian University Percussion Ensemble, the University of Illinois Contemporary Chamber Singers, the UNC Charlotte Percussion Ensemble, and the UNC Charlotte University Chorale.  He has composed pieces for professional performers such as Anthony Stoops, Scott Christian, Wolfgang David, David Gompper, Jeffery Lyman, Nick Petrella, Erin Lesser, Greg Beyer, Mira Frisch, and Paul Sharpe.

Recordings of Allemeier’s music are available on the Albany, Capstone, and Vox Novus labels.  His music is published by Carl Fischer Music Publishers, C. Alan Publications, and European American Music.   He received his Ph.D. in Composition from the University of Iowa, his Master of Music in Composition from Northwestern University, and his Bachelor of Music in Performance from Augustana College.  He has studied in Europe at the 41st and 42nd Internationalen Ferienkurse für Neue Musik in Darmstadt, Germany, and the 6th International Composition Course in Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic.  He currently teaches composition and music theory at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.  

2017 Elizabeth City State University

Zach Zubow: “The Light of the Stars” for 2 guitars (performed by Salvatore Contrino and Gordon Kreplin)

Zach Zubow’s (MTNA Commissioned Composer and NCMTA Theory/Composition Chair) compositions have been featured on numerous new music conferences and festivals throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia including SEAMUS, ICMC/SMC, and Electronic Music Midwest. He has won awards from the College Music Society and SCI/ASCAP and was published in the SCI Journal of Scores in 2013. Zubow was the recipient of the 2015 Cedar Cultural Center’s 416 Commissioning Project in Minneapolis, Minnesota where his new work for piano was premiered in January of 2016. Zubow received a grant from ArtPrize 2016 to collaborate with artist Emily Lynch Victory on an installation project that utilized Raspberry Pi computers, motion sensors, and mathematically derived electroacoustic music. The installation was featured at ArtPrize 2016 in Grand Rapids, MI from September to October, 2016. Zach Zubow is Assistant Professor and Director of Music at Queens University of Charlotte in Charlotte, NC and serves as the theory/composition chair for the North Carolina Music Teachers Association. 

2016 Wake Forest University

John Haines, “Suite for Harpsichord on an Azeri Mode” in four movements  (composer and performer)

John Haines is the Director of Worship at Christ Covenant Church, Matthews, NC (Charlotte). He is also the Director of the Institute for Sacred Music and Liturgy, a partnership with Saint Andrew's Theological College and Seminary where he serves as Interim Academic Dean. He received his Th.D. and M.Bib.Th. from Saint Andrew's; an M.M. from the Eastman School of Music; and a B.A. in piano performance from Colorado Christian University. He studied arranging and composition with Samuel Adler and conducting with Donald Neuen and David Effron. Haines is a prolific composer, arranger, and orchestrator of sacred music with a recent publication of Gregorian Chant set to the Canonical Hours in a multivolume set published by Saint Andrew's Press, "The Saint Andrew's Plainchant Breviary". John Haines has made numerous professional exchange trips to Baku, Azerbaijan, where he has given lectures on clavichord performance and construction. In 2010 Haines was commissioned to write an orchestral suite for a national celebration of the Hajibeyov Museum. Haines studied the folk theory works of Hajibeyov and, captivated by their beauty, decided to write this harpsichord suite in honor of his good friend, Serdar Farakov, composer in residence and director of the Hajibeyov Museum. The suite is written within the technical abilities of a good High School pianist, so as to encourage young players to pursue early keyboard performance as a part of their palate of interests.

2012 Meredith College

Tom L. Lohr, "Numbers" 

Tom L. Lohr has been an Instructor of Piano at Meredith College since 1979, where he teaches piano, both in the college’s music department and within the College’s Community School of Music. Additionally, he has taught composition, keyboard, choral arranging, music theory seminars and a course that combines the history of the visual and musical arts.  Mr. Lohr has served as the Director of the Meredith College School of Music (the non-credit division of the Department of Music) but will relinquish those duties soon to spend more time on other music projects. For thirty-five years he has coordinated the summer piano camp, beginners' piano camp, middle school composition camp, intensive piano camp and high school theory camp.  Former students of his have earned degrees from such noted schools as Indiana University, the Julliard School and Boston Conservatory. 

As a composer, Mr. Lohr has written works for performers of various media including piano and piano four-hands.  A selection of works includes a one-act opera, The Practical Heart (1998), Biblical Songs (1999), Songs from the Bible (2000-2001), Songs of the Indian Spirit (1999), and Improvisation, a solo piano piece written in September 2002, for the Tour of Historic Steinway Pianos.  During the summer of 2004, Mr. Lohr composed eleven solo piano pieces for the Raleigh Piano Teachers Association for use as competition pieces in that organization’s Young Artist Auditions.  The pieces were written to mark the 50th anniversary of the Raleigh Piano Teachers Association as well as the 25th anniversary of the Young Artist Auditions, both of which were observed in 2005.  All of these works, and others, are available through Shelkins Music Publishing Company.* Also in 2004, Mr. Lohr received a commission to compose a work, Suite for Strings, to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Lamar Stringfield Music Camp.  Another commemorative piece is Festive Concert Overture which he wrote for the 20th anniversary of the Philharmonic Association (PA) in Raleigh.  The work premiered at the opening concert of the Triangle Youth Philharmonic’s 20th anniversary season (2008-09) and was repeated in their alumnae celebration concert at the close of the season.  Five years later, Lohr was again commissioned to write another work for the PA for their 25th anniversary.  This work was recorded by WCPE-FM Radio and was broadcast later that year. During 2010, Lohr wrote two new solo piano pieces for a lecture-recital (2011) at Davidson College.  These two pieces, joined with the Improvisation from 2002 to form a set entitled Tributes. The three pieces are tributes to the composers Debussy, Bartok and Ginastera.  A new set of works produced in 2013, Meditations and an Exaltation on Medieval Melodies, is the most recent collection for solo piano.  This set of pieces uses six medieval tunes as the basis for each of the six pieces.  In 2014 Lohr wrote Concertino for Piano and Orchestra for the Meredith College Sinfonietta.  He premiered that work as piano soloist with the Sinfonietta in October with Jim Waddelow conducting.  Currently, Mr. Lohr is working on a large-scale setting of the mass for choir and instrumental ensemble. 

Mr. Lohr is active in both the Raleigh Piano Teachers Association and the North Carolina Music Teachers Association (NCMTA).  He has served as an officer in both of these organizations and was a presenter in the 2005 Fall Conference of NCMTA where Mr. Lohr presented a lecture-recital on many of his solo piano works.  In 2012 he again presented a session at the Fall Conference of NCMTA on his collection of pieces entitled Numbers.  Four of those pieces were on the NCMTA Contest-Festival list that year (2012-13).  He has served twice as the Vice Chair of the Piano Section and Chair of Theory/Composition of NCMTA.  Mr. Lohr, a long-time member and former president of the Gamma Mu chapter of Pi Kappa Lambda, is also an honorary member of the Beta Zeta chapter of Sigma Alpha Iota.

*Works are available through Allen Herther Music at or (919) 872-7760.