Alexa Letourneau (any pronouns), currently based in New York City, is a versatile musician passionate about the intersections of genre, style, diverse musical disciplines, and artistic activism. They are a composer, flutist, vocalist, researcher, podcaster, and educator. An Ohio native, Alexa began playing the flute at eight years old. Within weeks, they were taping 5 pens together to draw a staff on which to begin composing. They hold a Bachelor’s of Music in Composition from Illinois Wesleyan University, and are currently pursuing a Master’s of Music in Composition at the Mannes School of Music under the instruction of Missy Mazzoli.
Alexa’s compositions have been performed in Austria, Bulgaria, the United Kingdom, South Africa, and the USA. They aim to take the listener on a journey with each new piece, and their use of unique timbral combinations creates an expressive sound described as “poignant and intriguing, yet whimsical” (Gabriele Proy, Vienna Radio Philharmonic). Of all the awards their compositions have won, Alexa is most chuffed about their piece “Piccolo piccolo Piccolo piccolo piccolo piccolo Piccolo piccolo” winning runner-up for fan-favorite during a 48-hour composition challenge (zFestival 2020). They are also passionate about using their art for social activism, be it speaking out against gun violence or composing specifically for LGBTQ+ performers.
As a performer, Alexa has specialized in the bookends of the classical genre: early music (pre-1750) and new music (21st century), frequently playing premiers and workshopping pieces with living composers. They seek to inspire communities in the NYC area to engage with new music through accessibility, collaboration, and education, and they currently maintain a studio of flute students taught virtually, both as a freelance educator and a faculty member of the Illinois Wesleyan University Preparatory Program.
Alexa has also recently entered the world of music research. Motivated by spite stemming from a particularly bad private lesson, they are conducting independent research on conceptions of the compositional voice and its use in creative pedagogy. Their preliminary research earned Alexa Research Honors in music at their undergraduate university, but they have no intention of leaving well enough alone and they continue having complex discussions about authenticity, creativity, and psychology with anyone who will indulge their curiosity. The most recent offshoot of this inquisitive energy led to the creation of the weekly podcast, Classical Schmassical: An Anti-Classical Classical Music Podcast, which hosts discussions with guests on the music world at large and their specific niche within it.
Alexa is not only a musician, however; they also spend their free time developing recipes, writing poetry, screaming into the void, and cross-stitching.
Visit their website at https://alexaletourneau.com/