Photo: WV Youth Symphony Matthew Jackfert (b. 1988), son of Jennifer Jackfert and the late Dr. Kent Jackfert, is a native of Charleston, WV. He completed his undergraduate Composition degree at West Virginia University, while studying under Dr. John Beall and David Taddie, as well as his undergraduate Chinese degree. He also finished a Master’s in Composition at University of Texas in Austin while also serving as director of the extracurricular choir, Collegium Musicum. At UT, Jackfert studied with Donald Grantham, Daniel Welcher, Russell Pinkston, Yevgeniy Sharlat, and Bruce Pennycook. Jackfert currently works in Charleston, WV as a composer and radio host with West Virginia Public Broadcasting in addition to his freelance work. Jackfert has written for concert music, TV, film and videogames. Jackfert has been played by several ensembles of different sizes and instrumentations including the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra, the Atlanta Pops Orchestra, the Landau Eugene Murphy Jr. and the Sweet Lipzz Band, the WVU Wind Symphony, the WVU Symphony Orchestra, the River Cities Orchestra, Waynesburg University Concert Band, Marshall University Wind Symphony, Marshall University Chamber Choir, and WV Youth Symphony Orchestra, among many others. Recently, his work has been used in the New York Times story “A Home but, not Home” featuring Bono from U2. In 2015, he was a finalist for the 2015 Morton Gould Awards, and his piece “Vandalia” was featured on the national radio program Performance Today from APM. Also in 2015, he won the WVMTA Commissioned Composer Award. In 2014, his piece “On the Shores of Qingdao” was performed as part of the Eastern Music Festival by the Tannenbaum-Sternberger Young Artists Orchestra. In addition, his symphonic work, Ripples, has been read by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.