Music Department

Kirsten VolnessKirsten Volness

Visiting Assistant Professor of Music 

B.A., Music, University of Minnesota, 2002
M.M.. Composition, University of Michigan, 2004
DMA, Composition, University of Michigan, 2008 

Composition, twentieth- and twenty-first-century music, electroacoustic music.

Kirsten Volness is Visiting Assistant Professor of Music at Reed College. She is an electro/acoustic composer and pianist whose music is inspired by nature, myth, science, spirituality, and environmental and sociopolitical issues. She has received commissions from the BMI Foundation, ASCAP/SEAMUS, World Future Council Foundation, and Third Practice Electroacoustic Festival, writing new works for Hotel Elefant, NOW Ensemble, Transient Canvas, Ann Arbor Symphony, and Experiential Orchestra. She performs with New York City–based Hotel Elefant and Providence-based Verdant Vibes, a new music ensemble and concert series she co-founded in 2015. Recipient of the MacColl Johnson and RISCA Fellowships in Music Composition, Kirsten was 2017 composer-in-residence at the Music Mansion, creating the First Fridays concert series, and served on the board of directors as Secretary. She collaborates with Meridian Project on multimedia performances exploring astrophysics, writes and performs operas with the homeless advocacy group Tenderloin Opera Company, and is an affiliate artist of Sleeping Weazel theatre company. She earned composition degrees from the Universities of Michigan (DMA, MM) and Minnesota (BA summa cum laude) and taught privately and at the University of Rhode Island before joining the faculty at Reed.