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UT Arlington music professor wins international composing award

News Release — 15 December 2009


Media contact: Sue Stevens, Senior Media Relations Officer, 817-272-3317,

ARLINGTON - A University of Texas at Arlington professor has been awarded a gold medal in Greece. Those words may bring to mind athletic competitions, but Dan Cavanagh is a musician and composer.

Dan CavanaghThe gold medal is presented by the National Academy of Music and was announced Nov. 21 at a Gala Concert of the International Music PrizesTM in Sykies, Greece. Cavanagh, UT Arlington's assistant director of jazz studies, was among 80 composers from 22 countries who submitted 186 compositions to the competition.

One of 13 winners, Cavanagh was honored in the advanced level. The award includes a Certificate of Mastery in Music Composition, along with the Gold Medal of Distinction and the right to use the title "Winner of the International Music Prizes for Excellence in Composition 2009."

"It is a huge honor to be recognized by the National Academy of Music in Greece for musical composition on the international level," Cavanagh said. "This award will continue to promote performances of my music across the globe."

His winning composition was "From the Barrage Comes Clarity" for trumpet and piano. It has not been played locally but was recorded in October by trumpeter John Adler on his CD "Confronting Inertia."

Cavanagh, who plays with the Fort Worth Jazz Orchestra, has garnered numerous awards for his compositions, including a First Music Commission from the New York Youth Symphony Jazz Band Classic program. He also was a finalist in the 2005 ASCAP Young Jazz Composers competition.

Cavanagh's music is performed across the country and internationally, and he has received commissions from a wide range of groups, from professional big bands to junior high jazz ensembles. His compositions for large jazz ensemble are published by UNC Jazz Press.

The National Academy of Music is a public educational charity. Based in Colorado, its mission is to promote, support and advance the art and science of music and to encourage and motivate musicians at all levels through the provision of goals and the measurement of progress. The Academy oversees the entire process of the International Music PrizesTM and awards the prizes to the winners.

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