EarShot: The Next Festival of Emerging Artists

Choreography Workshop at The New School Tishman Auditorium

June 8th, 2023

Peter Askim, Artistic Director: NextFest 

Mentor Composers: Aaron Jay Kernis, Kamala Sankaram

Mentor Choreographer: Sidra Bell

Participants: Akari Komura, Michael Dudley Jr., Emil Ernström,

About the Composers

Akari Komura (b.1996) is a Japanese composer-vocalist. From an early age, she has been involved in performing arts by playing the piano, singing, and dancing modern ballet. Her interest in the somatic practice and embodied consciousness is central to her creative process. Akari is interested in curating a participatory performance space that invites a community of musicians and listeners for a collective conscious, meditative, and healing experience. Akari’s breadth of work spans multimedia/electronics, vocal music, chamber ensemble, and interdisciplinary collaborations with dancers, visual artists, and architects.

Her works have been presented at the Atlantic Music Festival, Composers Conference, Resonance 104.4 FM (UK), International Composition Institute of Thailand, Nief-Norf, Montreal Contemporary Music Lab (Canada), Radiophrenia 87.9FM (Scotland), and soundSCAPE (Italy). She holds an M.M. in Composition from the University of Michigan and a B.A. in Vocal Arts from the University of California, Irvine. Her major teachers include Evan Chambers, Roshanne Etezady, Stephen Rush, and Frances Bennett. Akari is currently pursuing a Ph.D in Composition at the University of California San Diego.


Composer, trumpeter, and educator Michael R. Dudley Jr. (b. 1994) has developed a career branching in multiple directions and defying conventions of genre. He has played at venues like NYC’s Birdland with groups such as the Maria Schneider Orchestra, Christian McBride Big Band, having recorded as a lead trumpet player on multiple GRAMMY®-winning recordings by the John Daversa Big Band and Brian Lynch Big Band. As a composer he earned a 2022 ASCAP Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composer Award, and was recently named as a finalist for the San Francisco Symphony’s Emerging Black Composers Project. His recent collaborations include the likes of Donny McCaslin, and his compositions and orchestrations have been performed by the Sphinx Virtuosi (for their 2022-23 international tour), Charlotte Symphony, Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra, New Canon Chamber Collective, and Cincinnati Contemporary Jazz Orchestra, with more premieres scheduled soon. He currently lives in Potsdam, NY (among occupied land of the Kanienʼkehá:ka) where he serves as Assistant Professor of Jazz Studies at SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music.


Originally from Stockholm, Sweden, composer Emil Ernström (b. 1996) grew up in Sweden, Hungary, and the United States and his work draws from a variety of influences. Traversing electronic music, sampled sounds, and traditional instruments, Emil’s music frequently explores the contrast between immersive textures and rhythmic structures through minimalist procedures and unconventional sound worlds. His music has been performed by Norrköping Symphony Orchestra, Ensemble Mare Balticum, Sō Percussion, and Trio Immersio, among other ensembles. Awards include a scholarship from the Royal Swedish Academy of Music, a Yawkey Community Service Fellowship and an Ellen Battell Stoeckel Fellowship from the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival. Besides concert music, Emil’s music often interacts with theater, dance, installation and film and his work has been heard at Inter Arts Center (Sweden), the Yale Center for Collaborative Arts and Media, and the Palace of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania. Emil earned a Masters in Music Composition from the Malmö Academy of Music at Lund University, where he studied with Bent Sørensen and Alessandro Perini. He graduated from Yale College with a BA in music, studying composition with Kathryn Alexander and Konrad Kaczmarek. He currently lives and works in Philadelphia.