In the Introductory Young Composers Project, you’ll learn the fundamentals of music theory and composition needed to succeed as a composer: melodic construction, development of motives, form and introductory instrumentation. The final project is a string quintet composition performed by the TSO String Quintet at the Young Composers Festival in May.

Meet the Instructor

Betsy Bright has been a member of the TSO trumpet section since 2003.  She studied composition at the Shenandoah Conservatory in Virginia.  Betsy is passionate about every aspect of the composition process.  As a composer and arranger, Betsy composes for Monsoon Brass and Tucson Brass Workshop.  She enjoys teaching the fundamentals of composition and theory and, as a performer, she has premiered hundreds of compositions on stage.  Betsy has performed with orchestras across the United States including the San Diego Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, National Symphony, St Louis Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, and AZ Opera.  Betsy has been a devoted music teacher for over 20 years.  In the past, she has worked with Opening Minds through the Arts and she served as adjunct faculty at the University of Arizona.  Betsy is the founder and director of Tucson Brass Workshop and she has led a thriving private trumpet studio since 1997.

2022–23 Class Schedule

Classes take place on the Fridays listed below, from 5:00–6:00 PM, at the Tucson Symphony Center (2175 N. 6th Ave). Deadlines are noted in blue.

Fall Semester, 2022

September 2 – First Day of Class
September 9
September 16
September 23
September 30 – Last Day to Drop, Tuition Due
October 7
October 14
October 21
October 28
November 4
November 11 – TSO Harpist
November 18
November 25 – No Class
December 2
December 9
December 16
December 23 – No Class
December 30 – No Class

Spring Semester, 2023

January 6
January 13
January 20
January 27 – TSO String Quintet
February 3
February 10
February 17
February 24 – No Class
March 3
March 10
March 17
March 24
March 31 – Rough Draft Due
April 7 – No Class
April 14 – Guest Speaker: TSO Librarian
April 21
April 28 – Final Project Due
May 5
May 12 – Guest Speaker: TSO Stage Manager and Education Director

2022–23 Young Composers Festival

May 19–21, 2023

May 19, 2023, 7:00 PM at Tucson Symphony Center
May 20, 2023, 7:00 PM at Tucson Symphony Center
May 21, 2023, 2:00 PM at Leo Rich Theatre

Works by Introductory and Intermediate students will be performed on May 19 and 20 by TSO chamber ensembles and works by Advanced students will be performed by the Tucson Symphony Orchestra on May 21. Please consider attending all three days to support your peers!

Students will be invited to attend select rehearsals and concerts throughout the year, all free of charge. Dates and additional information will be announced in-class.