The choral music of Michael Bussewitz-Quarm engages singers and audiences with the leading social and environmental issues of our time. She is passionate about effecting change through choral music on topics ranging from the health of the world’s coral reefs to the epidemic of gun violence in the United States to the global refugee crisis. She is an active advocate for the transgender community; it is her fervent wish to spread knowledge and understanding of the transgender community through guest speaking and by simply being present in the lives of the talented musicians and artists surrounding her. Bussewitz-Quarm will be making her debut at Carnegie Hall as a composer in the spring of 2023 with the performance of “Where We Find Ourselves” under the direction of Rodney Wynkoop.

Winner of The American Prize in Choral Composition, Bussewitz-Quarm has had works performed by leading professional and educational choral ensembles across North America. Recent collaborations include the west coast premiere of The Unarmed Child by Eugene Concert Choir and Orchestra, I’ll Fly Away at the International Society of Contemporary Music’s New Music Days in Vancouver, BC, and Nigra Sum, performed by The Duke University Chorale on their California tour. Michael’s works have been rebroadcast on Public Radio East, KMUZ, and WCPE, with performances by Singers of New and Ancient Music, musica intima, the Gregg Smith Singers, the Duke University Chorale, the Esoterics, among other exceptional choral ensembles. She is published by Peermusic Classical.

Current projects include Peacebomb, inspired by Laotian families who make jewelry from metal taken from unexploded ordnance, Where We Find Ourselves, a pandemic-proof choral project inspired by the portraits of Hugh Mangum, and The Death and Life of Aida Hernandez: A Border Story, based on the book of the same name that tells the story of an undocumented teen’s harrowing experiences with the U.S.’s militarized immigration system.

Nigra SumVoicing: SSAATTBB  Accompaniment: Unaccompanied  Performance Length: 4:40  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Song of Solomon 1  Language: Latin  Seasonal/Liturgical Uses: Advent, World Refugee Day, World Communion  Descriptive Terms: Awakening, Hope, Refugee, Sorrow, Spring  First Performance: Apr 28, 2018: Singers of New and Ancient Music, Allan Friedman, Chapel In the Pines Presbyterian Church, Chapel Hill, NC Text Setting Source for Scores (P:E 800/819~2018-Q3)
I’m Not LostVoicing: SSAA  Accompaniment: Unaccompanied  Performance Length: 4:50  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Chantal Sellers  Language: English, Western Abenaki, Odawan, Lakota, Navajo/diné  Seasonal/Liturgical Uses: Memorial Services, Native American Appreciation  Descriptive Terms: Activism, Memorial, Mmiwg  First Performance: Mar 05, 2020: Central Bucks High School-West Women’s Choir, Joseph Ohrt, Hochstein School, Rochester, NY, ACDA Eastern Division Conference Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 800/1130~2020-Q3)
Would You Know Me By My WorkVoicing: SATB  Solo(s): Soprano (optional)  Accompaniment: Piano  Performance Length: 04:15  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Shantel Sellers  Language: English  Descriptive Terms: Family, History, Work  First Performance: June 06, 2021 : Concert Singers of Cary, Nathan Leaf, Cary, NC Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 800/1607~2021-Q4)
My Name Is Lamiya: Don’t Call Me “Refugee”Voicing: SATB  Solo(s): Optional Solos  Accompaniment: Piano  Performance Length: 6:05  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Lamiya Safarova  Language: English  Descriptive Terms: Advocacy, Determination, Perseverance, Refugee, Self-identity  First Performance: Oct 26, 2017: Western Carolina University Choir, Alison Thorp, Recital Hall of Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, NC Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 800/801~2018-Q2)
To Avielle, On Her Fifth, Sixth BirthdayVoicing: SATB  Solo(s): Soprano, Tenor  Accompaniment: Piano  Performance Length: 5:44  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Chantal Sellers  Language: English  Descriptive Terms: Activism, Gun Violence, Remembrance  First Performance: Sep 21, 2019: Long Island Voices, Michael Bussewitz-Quarm, St. Peter’s by-the-Sea, Bay Shore, New York Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 800/1036~2019-Q4)
So it was IVoicing: SSAATBB  Accompaniment: Unaccompanied  Performance Length: 7:00  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Euan Tait  Language: English  Descriptive Terms: Hope, Peace, Stranger, Strength, War  First Performance: Oct 18, 2019: The Esoterics, Eric Banks, St Barnabas Episcopal Church, Bainbridge Island, WA Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 800/1069~2020-Q1)
ScarsVoicing: SATB  Solo(s): Alto Solo, Optional Tenor Solo  Accompaniment: Piano  Performance Length: 06:30  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Shantel Sellers  Language: English  Descriptive Terms: Endurance, Perseverance, Strength, Change  First Performance: May 02, 2021 : Durham Choral Society and Duke University Chorale, Dr. Rodney Wynkoop, Durham, North Carolina (during pandemic of 2020) Text Setting Source for Scores (P:E 800/1584~2021-Q3)
The Unarmed ChildVoicing: SATB  Solo(s): Soprano, Tenor (Hip Hopera)  Accompaniment: Chamber Orchestra  Performance Length: 48:12  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Requiem Mass, Shantel Sellers, Adrian Dunn, Christina Rossetti, Rabindranth Tagore  Language: English  Seasonal/Liturgical Uses: Memorial Service, Remembrance, December 14, International Day Of Peace  Descriptive Terms: Memorial, Hope, Victims Of Gun Violence  First Performance: November 08, 2019 : Eugene Concert Choir, Diane Retallack, Beall Hall, University of Oregon, Eugene, OR Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 800/1508~2020-Q4)