Kennedy Taylor Dixon

Westminster Concert Series presents

Kennedy Taylor Dixon

Kennedy Taylor Dixon is Westminster's inaugural winner of the Hear & Now commissioning prize. Kennedy writes about this commission, "Creating a personal bond with my performers is always my preference, and I want them to know that there isn't a barrier between us. Ideally, the end product of this project is a piece that all parties feel supported and heard in." 

Hear the world premiere of Kennedy's a path i've never seen' for marimba and viola. 

The program also features music by Raven Chacon, Erryollyn Waller, Devin Maxwell and Brandon Derfler. Reception to follow the concert.

This prize was funded in part by the Salt Lake Arts Council through the Racial, Equity, and Inclusion Grant.


  • Kennedy Taylor Dixon, composer and viola
  • Zach Bacon, turntable
  • Jacob Hirst, turntable
  • Rodrigo Hernandez Vazquez, turntable
  • Kimi Kawashima, piano
  • Noriko Kishi, cello
  • Devin Maxwell, percussion
  • Katie Porter, clarinet
  • John T. Posadas, viola

Meet Our Performers

Kennedy Taylor Dixon is a violist and composer currently based in Kalamazoo, MI. Dixon has been described as a “vibrant musical voice,” often writing for herself and collaborators in her musical community. Some highlights of her career to date include a premiere at Electric Music Midwest (here I stand, 2022), participation in the Bang on a Can 2022 Festival 2022. performances by Jack Quartet (unstuckening, New Music on the Point, 2021), a commission from Laura Lenz (first promise (of Cadillac Mountain, 2021), along with a well-received work for viola and electronics performed with colleague Kristopher Bendrick (pretty on paper, MOXsonic 2020). Dixon was also selected as a performance fellow at Nief-Norf in 2019 and again in 2020, she participated as a composition fellow at New Music on the Point in 2021, and she will be attending Bang On a Can as a composition fellow for their 2022 festival. Her viola and electronics work here i stand will also be presented at Electronic Music Midwest in 2022.

Dixon holds a MA in Music Composition in addition to her dual undergraduate degrees in viola performance and music composition from Western Michigan University. This fall, Dixon will be starting her PhD in Music Composition at Princeton University.
Brandon Derfler 

Pianist Kimi Kawashima enjoys a committed career as a teacher, performer, and arts advocate. She was born and raised in Bowling Green, Ohio. An avid chamber musician, Kimi has curated and performed in critically acclaimed programs ranging from Schubert’s Winterreise at the Grand Teton Music Festival to  “Intersections: A Musical Perspective of Cy Twombly” at the Menil Collection in Houston, performing John Cage’s seminal Sonatas and Interludes for Prepared Piano. She has performed for composers Andrew Norman, Thomas Osborne, Tristan Murail, Frederic Rzewski and Chen Yi, and has recently given the Utah premieres of works by Wang Lu, Karen Tanaka, and Anthony R. Green. Kimi graduated from Oberlin Conservatory of Music and completed her DMA in piano performance at Rice University, as a student of Brian Connelly, where she was the winner of the Shepherd School Concerto Competition, performing the Concerto for Piano and Strings by Alfred Schnittke with the Shepherd School Symphony Orchestra and conductor James Gaffigan. She has recorded for MSR Classics and performed on the Hyperion recording of Saint-Saens’ beloved Carnival of the Animals, with pianist Jason Hardink and Thierry Fischer and the Utah Symphony. She is currently Director of Music and Piano faculty at Westminster University. She was appointed by the Governor of Utah to serve on the Music Board of the Utah Division of Arts and Museums.

Devin Maxwell, PhD, is a composer, percussionist, and music technology entrepreneur. His chamber music has been described as “amiably strident…clusters hammered insistently” by the New York Times and orchestral works “a beautiful puzzle, … fitting between plucks and pedals that build pyramid melodies” by the American Record Guide. Awards for composition include the Nief-Norf Composition Prize, the Leroy Robertson Prize, “Best Experimental Film” New York Independent Film Festival, New Music USA/Commissioning Music USA and an Honorable Mention at the American Composer’s Orchestra 2013 Underwood Readings. Maxwell has collaborated with choreographer Jessica Gaynor Dance (NYC), filmmaker Rollin Hunt (Los Angeles), graphic designer Phillip Niemeyer (Austin), photographer Svavar Jónatansson (Iceland), clarinetist Katie Porter, and violist/songwriter Anni Rossi (NYC). As a percussionist, Maxwell’s eclectic output includes performing in venues and festivals including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Columbia University, SOUND at the Schindler House, LA Philharmonic’s Green Umbrella Series, Roulette, Issue Project Room, St Marks Theater (NYC), The Armory, The Sun Tunnels, The Kitchen, Joe’s Pub, Monolith, Mercury Lounge, South by Southwest, String Theory, CMJ and The Stone, among others. He has recorded with record labels including 4AD, Polyvinyl, Parlophone, Cantaloupe Records, and Mode and can be heard on music for TV, film, and video games including Grand Theft Auto IV, The Independent Film Channel, Grey’s Anatomy, and BBC. An avid supporter of new music, Maxwell has commissioned and performed dozens of solo or chamber compositions throughout the course of his career. In addition to composing and performing, Maxwell co-founded the LoudLouderLoudest Music Production Company in Brooklyn, NY, and was responsible for many firsts in wireless music and mobile game sound for clients such as Sony, Warner Music Group, Universal Music Group, Atlantic Records, HBO and Disney. While in New York, he also co-founded Listen/Space, a venue for new music which now exists as a music commissioning organization located in Park City, Utah. His creative work is published by Good Child Music New York and Éditions musique SISYPHE.

Katie Porter is a clarinetist and curator specializing in experimental music. Passionate about creating musical communities, she co-founded the venue Listen/Space (Brooklyn) and curates the Listen/Space Commissions, responsible for 46 new works for mixed chamber group. She also co-directs the biennial VU Symposium for experimental, improvised and electronic music (Park City, Utah) and is working on a multi-year project of experimental works for solo clarinet at Nancy Holt’s Sun Tunnels, a land artwork in remote northern Utah. She has performed solos or chamber music at Roulette (BK), Issue Project Room (BK), The Kitchen (NYC), The Stone (NYC), C4NM (San Francisco), Fridman Gallery (NYC), American Mavericks Festival (NYC), Green Umbrella Series (LA), SOUND at the Schindler House (LA), BLIM (Vancouver), NOVA (SLC), UMOCA, UMFA, Contemporary Art Center Cincinnati, Lincoln Center (NYC), Centre Acanthes (France), Scelciana (Italy), Moma PS1 (NYC), Ostrava Days (Czech Rep), KM28 (Berlin), St Petersburg Art Space (Berlin), and premiered works by John Luther Adams, Jason Ajemian, Carolyn Chen, Laura Cetilia, André Cormier, Nomi Epstein, Jürg Frey, Jennie Gottschalk, Anne Guthrie, Brian Harnetty, John Hastings, Sarah Hennies, Yvette Janine Jackson, Dan Joseph, Travis Just, Mike Kelley, Michael Pisaro, Larry Polansky, Stephanie Richards, Morris Rosenzweig, Arthur Russell, Craig Shepard, Teodora Stepančić, Colin Tucker, James Tenney, Maayan Tsadka, and Christian Wolff, among many others.  Current collaborations include A Quartet or Two Duos with James Ilgenfritz, Teerapat Parnmongkol and Lucie Vítková in NYC, the duo Malosma with flutist Christine Tavolacci in LA and Phase to Phase with bass clarinetist Lucio Capece (Berlin) which was be released in July 2022 on the Japanese label FTARRI.

Violist John T. Posadas enjoys an active career as a performer and educator. Recitals have taken him across the country and abroad with appearances at the Kennedy Center, Tanglewood Music Festival, Aspen Music Festival, Santa Fe Opera, Grand Teton Music Festival, Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music, Forth Worth Chamber Music Society, and the Chautauqua Institute. As a chamber musician, he has won top prizes at the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition and is a founding member and the violist for the Baumer String Quartet. Orchestrally, he has performed with the Boston Symphony, Houston Symphony, Santa Fe Opera, Mainly Mozart Festival Orchestra, the Naples Philharmonic, among many others. JT joined the Utah Symphony as a member of the viola section in September 2020. Before joining the Utah Symphony, he had been a resident artist and adjunct professor of viola and chamber music at the University of South Florida School of Music. A sought-after guest teacher and clinician, Posadas has taught masterclasses at the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, University of Toronto, University of North Texas,, University of Florida, and the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music. For his extraordinary service in the arts, John was named an official Kentucky Colonel at the age of 13.