Ken Schaphorst is a composer, performer, and educator currently chairing the Jazz Studies
and Improvisation Department at the New England Conservatory in Boston. Before moving
to Boston in 2001, Schaphorst served as Director of Jazz Studies at Lawrence University in
Appleton, Wisconsin for ten years. Schaphorst is also a founding member of the Jazz
Composers Alliance, a Boston-based non-profit corporation promoting new music in the
jazz idiom since 1985. Born in Abington, Pennsylvania on May 24, 1960, Schaphorst has
studied at Swarthmore College, New England Conservatory, and Boston University, where
he received the Doctor of Musical Arts in 1990. His composition teachers have included
Thomas Oboe Lee, Gerald Levinson, William Thomas McKinley, and Bernard Rands.
Schaphorst has been awarded Composition Fellowships from the National Endowment for
the Arts in 1988 and 1991, the Wisconsin Arts Board in 1997, Meet the Composer Grants
in 1987 and 1997, and was a Music Composition Finalist in the Massachusetts Fellowship
Program in 1986. Schaphorst has released six recordings as a leader: Ken Schaphorst Big
Band: Making Lunch (1989), Ken Schaphorst Big Band: After Blue (1991), Ken Schaphorst
Ensemble: When the Moon Jumps (1994), Ken Schaphorst: Over the Rainbow (1997), Ken
Schaphorst Big Band: Purple (1999) and Ken Schaphorst: Indigenous Technology (2002).