Independent Minds, Working Together

Cara Haxo '13 Wins National Award for Young Composers

Cara Haxo, who graduated summa cum laude last month with a bachelor’s degree in music composition from The College of Wooster, has won the 2013 National Federation of Music Clubs Young Composers Award for her work “Sonata for the Fall.” This is the second year in a row that a Wooster composition major has won the national award. Last year’s prize went to Frederick Evans ’13.

June 5, 2013 by John Hopkins
Cara Haxo

Cara Haxo '13

WOOSTER, Ohio, June 5, 2013 - Cara Haxo, who graduated summa cum laude last month with a bachelor’s degree in music composition from The College of Wooster, has won the 2013 National Federation of Music Clubs Young Composers Award for her work “Sonata for the Fall.” This is the second year in a row that a Wooster composition major has won the national award. Last year’s prize went to Frederick Evans ’13.

Haxo’s composition, a ten-minute work for cello and piano, was one of just three pieces honored in the Student/Collegiate Division, where she competed with undergraduate and graduate composition majors between the ages of 19 and 26 from around the country. Haxo composed “Sonata for the Fall” as part of her Independent Study project, Wooster’s nationally acclaimed mentored undergraduate research experience. 

Jack Gallager, the Olive Williams Kettering Professor of Music at Wooster, and Haxo’s Independent Study advisor, described “Sonata for the Fall” as “an ambitious, impassioned one-movement work revealing an assertive, bravura quality and thoughtful expressive deployment of the instruments. Cara’s recognition in this respected national forum and the new works she has composed since completing ‘Sonata for the Fall’ testify to her rich creative resourcefulness, dedicated work ethic, and increasingly professional assurance as a young composer.”

The national award follows Haxo’s statewide success last year. Her saxophone quartet, “The Giving Tree,” commissioned by the PRISM Quartet and premiered at New York City’s Symphony Space, won second prize in the 2012 Ohio Federation of Music Clubs composition contest.

Haxo will begin graduate studies in composition this August at Butler University in Indianapolis, Ind., where she has been awarded a graduate teaching assistantship. Her professional goal is to teach composition at a college or university.

The College of Wooster is America’s premier college for mentored undergraduate research. Wooster offers an excellent, comprehensive liberal arts education, culminating in a rigorous senior project, in which each student works one-on-one with a faculty mentor to conceive, organize and complete a significant research project on a topic of the student’s own choosing. Through this distinctive program, every Wooster student develops abilities valued by employers and graduate schools alike: independent judgment, analytical ability, creativity, project-management and time-management skills, and strong written and oral communication skills. Founded in 1866, the college enrolls approximately 2,000 students.