Transgender singers, their teachers and peers were interviewed to gain a better understanding of the issues facing transgender singers and learn how to address these issues to make the choral classroom a safe and accepting space. Choir classrooms were observed, and in response, a classroom toolkit for educators was created and symposium for the USC community was held.

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Research Classroom Toolkit

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-Thank you!

Session on Gender Inclusivity

Thank you to the wonderful & insightful speakers- Dr. Palkki, Mr. Hayden & representatives from the fantastic Trans Chorus of Los Angeles (TCLA).

If you, or anyone you know is interested in a similar session or presentation of findings, go to the contact page!

USC Update:

Fall 2018

Choral Ensemble Name Changes!

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Trans Composer Spotlight

Name: Michael Bussewitz-Quarm

Pronouns: He/Him

From: New York

Genre: Classical, Choral



Passionate about advocacy through choral music, Michael Bussewitz-Quarm is an award-winning New York-based composer, conductor, and speaker. His choral work, “I’ll Fly Away”, received its Canadian premiere upon selection to the International Society of Contemporary Music’s New Music Days 2017 in Vancouver, B.C. by the acclaimed vocal group, musica intima. Michael’s most recent works include the commissioned work “The Road That Has No End”, “Nigra Sum", and Requiem Dies Magna, which premiered September 2017 by Long Island Voices and Sound Symphony under Michael’s direction. His works have been premiered by youth voices, church choirs, professional singers and community choruses throughout the United States, Canada, Europe and the Middle East. 


First and foremost a composer, Michael created the “Child Refugee Awareness" and “Hope for Recovery” Choral Consortiums, both premiered in the fall of 2017,  and is in the process of creating the upcoming consortium, “The Great American Choral Reef” for Earth Day, 2019. With these songs, Michael hopes to bring attention to children of the global refugee crisis, families struggling with opioid addiction, as well as climate change. The cornerstone work of his catalog, Requiem Dies Magna, composed with the intention of healing and to honor the first responders and survivors of the 9/11 attacks, has grown to speak to all who have survived the loss of a loved one. and the complex stages of grief and the path to finding peace. The first edition of Requiem Dies Magna premiered in 2010, and broadcast on Public Radio East.


Michael’s works have been broadcast on Public Radio East, performed by musica intima, the Gregg Smith Singers, Long Island Symphonic Choral Association, Harmonium Choral Society, and SoLI among other exceptional choral ensembles.


Michael often collaborates with poet Shantel Sellers, a proud tribal member the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa & Chippewa Indians of Peshawbestown, Michigan.


Michael can be reached through his website,


Why?: “Being a trans composer not only comes with great challenges, but also great rewards. I have chosen to live my life with authenticity, true to who I am, for both my sake and for the people in my life.

Living my truth has attracted more people to my music then ever in my past. And my hope is that my presence in the classical and choral communities will give other rans musicians strength as well. “



Los Angeles, CA, USA

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