Gustavo Aguilar is an experimental performer/composer/improviser, whose interdisciplinary approach to art making integrates present-composed (improvised) and past-composed (fully notated) elements with the use of new technologies and an active research interest in cultural/critical studies. As an art practitioner whose work has been called "beautiful, introspective and passionate," "thought-provoking and thoroughly fresh" Gustavo’s awareness and engagement with new and innovative forms of art operate and encompass a wide range of traditions and media that help him to blur the boundaries betwixt composer/performer and between music, art, and theatre. A Brownsville, Texas native, Gustavo has performed at major festivals throughout the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific, and has given lectures and master classes at universities and symposia across the United States and abroad.
Philip Carlsen conducted the orchestra and has taught music theory, composition, film music, non-Western music, and other subjects at UMF since 1982. A nationally recognized composer, he has had his music played at New York’s Town Hall and the Museum of Modern Art, at the Kennedy Center, national conferences of the College Music Society and the Society of Composers, and other locations. He has received commissions from many Maine organizations, including the Portland Symphony Orchestra, Sebago-Long Lakes Region Chamber Music Festival, and the Bossov Ballet Theatre. Among his honors are fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Maine Arts Commission, and a residency at the MacDowell Colony. Carlsen’s automobile orchestra pieces are practically a UMF tradition. He is also an active cellist, performing in a variety of genres from Bach cantatas to improvised back-up tracks for singer-songwriters.
Steven Pane’s career as a pianist and conductor emerges out of his life-long interest in the interdisciplinary study and performance of music. At UMF his work often involves collaborations such as the Celestial Emporium with poet Jeff Thompson and artist Dawn Nye; Intertextualiy, Bakhtin, and Ives's Concord Sonata with Tiane Donahue; or Bach's Goldberg Variations and Stories with author Pat O'Donnell. Most recently, Pane gave the American premier of Ana-Maria Avram's Musique pour Mallarme, at Harvard and UMF in 2010, and shares Avram and her partner Iancu Dumitrescu's interest in phenomenology and music. Dr. Pane has performed at universities and in major halls throughout the country including the Academy of Music in Philadelphia, Aaron Davis Hall in New York City, Davies Hall in San Francisco, and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.