Composition Academy

Academy faculty

Benjamin Taylor

Benjamin Dean Taylor (DM, Indiana University) is an award winning composer of concert music. With a catalogue of more than 100 works including music written for orchestra, wind band, opera, choir, and jazz big band, he enjoys frequent performances of his compositions all over the world.

Don Freund

Don Freund is an internationally recognized composer with works ranging from solo, chamber, and orchestral music to pieces involving live performances with electronics, music for dance, and large theatre works. Freund is Professor of Composition at IU’s Jacobs School of Music.

Corey Chang

Corey Chang, described as “a major composer…of his generation” by The Millbrook Independent, is a composer and pianist from Connecticut. Winner of an ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award among other honors, Chang holds degrees in Composition and Mathematics from Bard College and an MM Composition from the Juilliard School.


Emma Cardon-Wake (MM, Cleveland Institute of Music) is a composer, harpsichordist, and cellist from Logan, Utah. She has been recognized as an ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award winner and has received commissions from the acclaimed Fry Street Quartet, the American Festival Chorus and Orchestra, and many other ensembles and instrumentalists.


Dr. Yi-De Chen has a passion for teaching and a drive to connect with students with diverse backgrounds. Chen's career as a composer encompasses works for stage, concerts, film, animation, and ballet. This rich portfolio has showcased his exceptional creativity and equipped him with teaching methodologies that resonate with his students.

Xinyuan Deng is a composer, pianist, conductor, and educator who hails from Henan, China. Currently pursuing a D.M. at Indiana University, her diverse compositions blend delicate timbres from both Eastern and Western influences. Her award-winning works have seen performances by prestigious ensembles such as the PHACE Contemporary Ensemble, Zhejiang Symphonic Orchestra, and Harbin Symphonic Orchestra


Jamey Guzman (M.M. Composition and M.M. Music Scoring for Visual Media, in progress, Indiana University) is a composer and storyteller who tells necessary underrepresented stories with experimental and innovative techniques. Jamey has received major commissions from The Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel, Indiana; Really Spicy Opera, Opera Arlington, Strange Trace Opera, ENAEnsemble, Paradox Opera, and SONIT.


Born in Russia, Alexey Logunov is a composer and pianist whose music explores textural density and timbral complexity. His compositions have been consistently performed by internationally recognized ensembles at numerous festivals such as, Sound Ways and From Avantgarde to Present Days. He is a winner of the 2023 Georgina Joshi Composition Commission Award at Jacobs School of Music.


Composer Kian Ravaei (B.A., UCLA, M.M. in progress, Indiana University) takes tone painting to a new level, synthesizing diverse inspirations into evocative musical portraits. Whether he is composing piano preludes inspired by mythical creatures, flute melodies that mimic the songs of endangered birds, or a string quartet that draws from the Iranian music of his ancestral heritage, he takes listeners on a spellbinding tour of humanity’s most deeply felt emotions.


Recognised for blending 'idioms of Hollywood film music and Broadway musicals' (The Straits Times, Singapore 2023), seamlessly with Asian Traditional influences, US-based Singaporean composer, Edmund Song is acclaimed for his diverse commissions and film music nominations globally. Outside composition, He’s also a versatile double bassist who creates sound designs for media while recording and audio-engineering concerts.

For program information, please contact Dr. Benjamin Taylor at For administrative questions, please contact


Spring 2024 Semester
January 8Registration closes
January 12Payment due
January 15Classes start
March 11-17Spring Break (No classes)
April 13Classes conclude

Jacobs Composition Academy Summer Intensive

Starting this summer, JCA will offer a transformative 5-week program, providing aspiring composers of all ages and levels with a condensed, yet equally comprehensive, version of the semesterly JCA. This unique online program gives composers of all ages the opportunity to learn from award-winning mentors, lecturers and performers, develop their musical craft, and meet/interact with some influential figures in the business.

Click here for more information

Program offerings

Please Note: 1) The Jacobs Composition Academy is an entirely virtual program (Zoom); tuition reflects a 12-week semester. 2) Lessons are scheduled according to the availability of the instructor and student.

Designed for pre-college and adult participants, this offering includes:

  • Weekly 60-minute masterclass
  • Weekly 45-minute private lesson
  • Performance of the students' newly composed works by a trio of IU students. Performance scheduled upon the conclusion of the 12-week program. Participants provided the opportunity to workshop their composition in-progress with the trio during week 9.

Meeting schedule: Tuesdays, 8:30-9:30PM (EST)

Tuition: $750

Designed for pre-college and adult participants who already study composition. Those enrolled in Track 1B will participate in all the same masterclasses, reading session, and concert performance as those in Track 1A. Track 1B students will not take private lessons with JCA faculty; rather, they will continue to work with their own private lesson instructor to ensure progress on their composition for the trio performance concert. This offering includes:

  • Meeting schedule: Weekly 60-minute masterclass
  • Performance of the students' newly composed works by a trio of IU students. Performance scheduled upon the conclusion of the 12-week program. Participants provided the opportunity to workshop their composition in-progress with the trio during week 9.

Meeting schedule: Tuesdays, 8:30-9:30PM (EST)

Tuition: $525

Designed for composition students of all ages, this offering includes:

  • Weekly 30-minute lesson

Tuition: $400

Designed for young composers, ages 9 through 14-years, who are new to composing and are interested in exploring music creation. You may consider this masterclass series to be a music creation laboratory; a judgement-free zone perfect for exploration, collaboration, and creation. This offering includes:

  • Weekly 60-minute group composition class (Thursdays 7:30-8:30PM EST)

Tuition: $215

*Please note, Tracks 1-3
  1. These programs are entirely virtual (using Zoom)
  2. Spring and Fall sessions each run 12 weeks in length
  3. Lessons will be scheduled according to the availability of the student and instructor

How to apply

  1. Eligibility: Participants, 9-years and older. Those younger than 9-years may contact the program director for special consideration.
  2. Application process: To apply, complete the online registration form. No auditions are required for enrollment. Late applications will not be accepted.
  3. Lesson scheduling: Upon completing the online registration form, the participant will be contacted by the Jacobs Composition Academy coordinator.
  4. Payment: Accepting payment via credit card or check. 

Registration for Spring 2024 is now closed. To inquire about late registration, please contact

Once you have completed the previous steps, please submit the Participant Agreement Form

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