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Heidi Joosten

Born into a musical family in rural, northern Wisconsin, Heidi began her piano studies as early as four years old and harp studies at seven years. Through her years of musical training, she eventually took up studies in voice, oboe, organ, jazz piano, saxophone, mallet percussion, and guitar. She started composing at the age of 18 and fully began her composition training her junior year of college. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire with a Bachelor of Music Degree in Composition. Her previous composition instructors include J. Michael Roy, Ethan Wickman, and Chia-Yu Hsu.  In the spring of 2016, Heidi earned her Masters degree from Roosevelt University – Chicago College of Performing Arts where she studyed with Stacy Garrop and Kyong Mee Choi.

An avid lover of works for the stage and screen, Heidi’s music is heavily influenced by romantic opera, contemporary musical theatre, and film and television scores. With over 45 original compositions to her name, she enjoys writing for a multitude of genres, such as vocal, choral, opera, chamber, solo piano, and wind ensemble.  She has received commissions from many of her fellow performer colleagues as well as the Rice Lake Municipal Band, Living Water Lutheran Church choir, the UWEC Wind Symphony, Platteville School District Lakeland All-Conference Honors Choir.  Her award-winning music has been performed in Wisconsin, Illinois, and New York City.  Her musical theatre song “(Marry Me) Anywhere But Here” from her song cycle Return was selected to be performed by esteemed broadway alum Sean McDermott at the 2014 New York Musical Theatre Festival as a part of a concert celebrating the work of female composers.  During her time at CCPA, Heidi has won the 2014 Wind Ensemble Competition (Silent Night, Sea of Light) and the OperaLab competition to create a new chamber opera for Operafest VIII (Connla and the Fairy Maiden).

Aside from composing, Heidi is an active performer and arranger. Having been a collaborative musician since the age of fifteen, she has accompanied several local ensembles, both at the high school level and in the community. At the collegiate level, she extended her collaborative skills to accompanying over 40 different singers and instrumentalists. She performed selections of Benjamin Britten’s “Ceremony of Carols” on harp with the Red Cedar Chorus for their 2013 Christmas Concert.  An avid devotee of musical theatre, she has also served as a rehearsal accompanist for the following shows: Les Miserables, Damn Yankees, Chicago, South Pacific, the 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Last Five Years, They’re Playing Our Song, Cinderella, Annie, Godspell, White Christmas, and Once Upon A Mattress.  She is also an active arranger, producing pieces for the Cameron School District, Red Cedar Chorus, and for several UWEC a cappella groups. In January 2016, Heidi began music directing for Forte Chicago, where she will also serve as the composer in residence for the upcoming year.

Along with collaborating at the piano, Heidi also loves performing on stage, most recently portraying Natalie Goodman in the Eau Claire Children’s Theatre production of “Next to Normal” and Eponine Thenardier in Northern Star Theatre Company’s production of “Les Miserables”. 

In her free time, Heidi enjoys binge-watching Netflix, traveling, and spending time and making music with friends.  She is a member of ASCAP, Pi Kappa Lambda, International Alliance for Women in Music, and the American Composers Forum.