Dr. James Naigus, most recently the Visiting Assistant Professor of Horn at the University of Iowa, is a performer and composer of broadening recognition. He studied horn with Jeffrey Agrell at the University of Iowa, studied horn and composition with Paul Basler at the University of Florida during his masters degree, and while attending the University of Michigan for his undergraduate degree studied with Soren Hermansson, Bryan Kennedy, and Adam Unsworth.
He is currently third horn with the Waterloo/Cedar Falls Symphony Orchestra, and has played with the Brevard Symphony Orchestra, Gainesville Chamber Orchestra, Valdosta Symphony Orchestra, Ocala Symphony Orchestra, and soloed (on horn) with many regional professional choirs in Florida. He has toured Europe and South America as a member of the American Chamber Winds. Naigus has been a guest clinician and composer-in-residence at American Horn Quartet founder David Johnson's summer workshop in Daytona Beach for several years. He has also performed on recitals at the 2014 MidNorth Horn Workshop, 2013 Midwest Horn Workshop, the 2016, 2014 and 2013 Southeast Horn Workshops, and the 2015 and 2013 International Horn Symposiums.
As a member of staff at the prestigious Kendall Betts Horn Camp for the last two years, Naigus has designed and taught an aural harmony music theory course. Over the last several years he has also co-developed and taught a general music course at the University of Iowa entitled "Creativity in Music." This course is an exploration into how and why music works through critical listening, composition, and improvisation. Additional teaching interests include music theory, concert and commercial composition, and film music.
Naigus' compositions have been performed throughout the United States and beyond, with enthusiastic reception and rave review. In 2013 he was the Composer-in-Residence at the Southeast Horn Workshop in Richmond, VA. In 2009 he was awarded an honorable mention award in the International Horn Society Composition Contest, selected from 85 entries spread over 16 nations. He has written commercial compositions for clients such as Google, University of Michigan, University of Florida, and University of Iowa. He is currently published by RM Williams Publishing and Veritas Musica Publishing.
KBHC Alum: 2004
KBHC Staff: 2015-2017