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Michael Begay

Tuba City, AZ         

A Dine composer of chamber music, experimental sound, Native American flute, and metal music. Not only is Michael Begay an accomplished guitarist and bassist, but he also plays piano, and various instruments both Native American and orchestral. Michael is both a performer and educator; he has been a composition instructor in residency for the Grand Canyon Music Festival’s Native American Composers Apprentice Project (NACAP) for over eight years, and just finished his second residency with the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra’s Composition Academy. Both programs help educate Native American high school students, in the art of music composition, followed by a world premiere of created works. Michael Begay’s musical style ranges between both aggressive, and sounds pleasing to the ear, he is both a seeker of tone and technique, and is always exploring musical limits.

“Nahasdzaan Bikaa’gi Naasha” (I Walk The Earth)

Performed by Stefan Milenkovich (violin) and Renata Yazzie (piano) at Northern Arizona University’s Native American Cultural Center, as part of a two night community concert event, featuring works by classical and Dine composers for piano and violin.

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“Hai” (Dine/English- Winter)

This string quartet is my first experimental piece to date, some aspects of the piece were in development for over a year. This string quartet is an interpretation of the shift from fall to winter, the listener can then listen for the different textures that represent those changes.

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“Great Gambler”

Performed by Alexis Davis and Neilson Chen at ‘The Shrine of The Ages’ Grand Canyon, Arizona as part of the Grand Canyon Music Festival’s Native American Composers Apprentice Project, and the Arizona Opera’s “The Stories We Tell” Series. Words and music composed by Michael Begay.

Inspired/Based on Navajo Legend and the ‘Great Gambler story’ from “Between Sacred Mountains”– Rock Point Community School text.

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