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Oct 14

Transformative Music Theater – Music Builds Communities

October 14 @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm CEST

MuTaDra is music and theater to form and transform communities with seniors and youth, rural and urban, citizens and refugees

“How can we form and transform community through music theater creation?”

Mike von der Nahmer presents his concept of MuTaDra (Music – Theater – Drama) creating transformative music theater pieces with collaborator/partner Anita Prestidge with additional contributions from past collaborators and participants in the US and Germany.

He first put his theory into action with a 5-hour music festival as part of his 2016 McKnight Visiting Composer residency with the American Composers Forum. MuTaDra continued developing through projects like Growing Wise, Growing Young, Nia Wa Ja Shu: Make the World New; song cycles Blue Hum from Coming Home – An International opera through art song with ASCP and Sing out Strong: Decolonized Voices with White Snake Projects; and the children’s sensory opera SHIMMER. MuTaDra has been tested across America and across demographics inclusive of seniors and youth, neurotypical and neurodivergent, rural and inner-city, citizens and refugees, drawing from backgrounds from Europe to Africa and from Asia to America.

Mike, his collaborators, and contributors will give an overview of each project, process, feedback, and how his concept continues to evolve examining the psycho-social role of composer, writer, performer, technician, and audience. He will explore the questions: What is the psycho-social role of theater? What are the best practices for transitioning out of a project? What needs to be in place to make the transformation lasting and sustainable?

Mike von der Nahmer

Beginning with his first opera “Between Delusion and Reality” in 10th grade Mike has been trying to answer questions about the human mind, the human condition and social and political issues. He holds a B.A in composition from the University of Music and Performing Art (Munich), Film Scoring from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), a M.F.A. in Music Theater Writing from New York University where he held a 2-year departmental fellowship, a M.A. in Music Therapy from the University of Augsburg and a Certification in Music-Imaginative Pain Treatment from Magdeburg-Stendal University of Applied Sciences. Mike is currently the first composer at the German Aerospace Center working on his PhD thesis titled “Underscoring Aircraft Ballets – Sonfiying Air Traffic Control Data to heighten Situation Awareness – A Composer’s Perspective”. He has composed over 30 works for the stage (opera, musical, sung ballet, theater and dance) and over 100 for film and concert which have received numerous national and international awards. Besides his extensive work as a composer, he has also worked as a sound designer for BMW, creating auditory displays for the BMWi. For the next two years he is artist in residence at the Orchard Project Greenhouse Lab New York which is an artistic development laboratory for dramatic stories from around the world.

For a full bio and information check out his website: www.petermichaelvondernahmer.com

Anita Prestidge is a director/writer/performer who has collaborated with Mike since 2017. She earned her B.A.’s in Theater and Music at the University of St. Catherine (St.Paul, MN) and has been the recipient of several grants from the Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Council for her community theater projects. Most notable is the Artist Grant with funds from McKnight Foundation for the writing of SHIMMER the children’s sensory opera she is writing with Mike to create a visceral bridge of experience between neurodivergent and neurotypical minds using all eight senses.

The webinar will be online via zoom at


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