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The University of Alabama

School of Music

The University of Alabama School of Music looks forward to hosting the 2022 International Horn Competition of America on its beautiful campus in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Tuscaloosa is fortunate to have many fine restaurants, modern well-appointed hotels, and a vibrant arts environment situated in an active university-oriented community.

The Frank Moody Music Complex will serve as home to all events related to the competition. The Moody Music building includes several modern performance facilities, lecture spaces, rehearsal spaces, an in-house food service option, and multiple spaces for gathering and relaxation.

The two primary performance spaces which will be dedicated to the IHCA feature extremely well-appointed acoustics that have been described on many occasions over the years as “very horn friendly”. Having hosted four previous incarnations of the IHCA, the University of Alabama School of Music has proven to be a very successful venue for this event and its many related activities.

Substantial space will be provided and dedicated to the presentation of exhibits as well. Competitors will have the opportunity to visit exhibits and attend lectures in dedicated spaces in other parts of the music complex away from the competition events.

The School of Music at the University of Alabama, with its 45 full-time faculty and over 65 total faculty, look forward to welcoming horn players from all over the world to IHCA 2022!



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Charles “Skip” Snead currently serves as the Director of the Music School  and Professor of Horn at The University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, where  along with administrative duties, he teaches applied horn and brass  pedagogy. Skip has performed internationally as a soloist and chamber  musician, with appearances in Egypt, Romania, The United Kingdom, and  Cuba, in addition to various regional horn workshops and multiple International Horn Society Summer Symposia. He has been a featured artist  with many ensembles including The Alexandria Symphony in Alexandria,  Egypt; The State Orchestra of Romania; The British Horn Society; The  Monroe Symphony; The Macon Symphony; The Tuscaloosa Symphony; and  Shreveport Summer Music Festival Orchestras. 

In addition to the above named ensembles, Skip has performed with  the internationally recognized ensemble, The TransAtlantic Horn Quartet,  with colleagues, Michael Thompson, Richard Watkins, and Jeff Nelsen. The  TAHQ has performed throughout the United States and Europe. The TAHQ  has been a featured ensemble at many important events and venues including  the Britten-Pears Festival in Aldebrough, England, The Royal Wigmore Hall in London, England, The British Horn Society Festival, and the International  Horn Society Summer Symposium. 

He has recorded with the TransAtlantic Horn Quartet, the Classic  Brass, the Kentuckiana Brass and Percussion Ensemble, and has solo  recordings available on compact disc issued by Centaur Records, Albany  Records and MSR Classics. 

In addition to his work as a performer, he is internationally recognized  as a teacher and clinician. He has given masterclasses throughout the United  States and Europe and serves on the executive board of The International Horn Competition of America. In March 2004, he was invited to be a  Housewright Eminent Scholar Endowed Chair Holder at Florida State  University and has served a five year term on the Center for the International  Exchange of Scholars, Fulbright Senior Specialists Peer Review Committee. The University of Alabama awarded him The Burnum Distinguished Faculty  Award in March 2005 and The Outstanding Commitment to Students Award in 2020. 

His principal teachers have included Merwin Crisman, Karen  Thornton, and John Dressler, with additional studies with Dale Clevenger,  Philip Farkas, and William Capps.

Executive Director and Juror 

Executive Director
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Steven Gross was awarded First Prize in the first Competition, then called the Heldenleben International Horn Competition.  Since then, he has released 5 solo CDs with orchestra on Summit Records, and 1 with piano and organ.  He is a former member of the Atlanta Symphony, National Symphony, and for 24 years Principal Horn of the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra.


Steven Gross has soloed with international ensembles such as the Orchester der Stadt 

Vöcklabruck in Austria, Nairobi Symphony in Kenya, NTUA Wind Ensemble in Taiwan, WindWorx in South Africa, and the Camerata Filarmonica Bohemia of Prague.

Dr. Gross has been a performer, teacher and clinician at the Crescendo Summer Institute in Hungary, Ameropa International Chamber Music Festival and Prague Classics in the Czech Republic, Beijing Central Conservatory, South African Horn Society, L’Abri International Arts Festival in Switzerland, Royal Conservatory of Ghent, St. Petersburg (Russia) Winter Festival,

First International Music Festival at SIAS University, as well as guest Principal Horn with the Hunan Symphony.  His Carnegie Hall debut was described by the New York Concert Review as, “offering some of the cleanest articulation and purest musicality.”

International masterclasses include the Moscow Conservatory, Royal Academy of Music (London), St. Petersburg Conservatory, Royal Conservatory of Stockholm, and in Austria and Switzerland.  In South Africa, he was clinician at the Stellenbosch Conservatory and the University of Cape Town.  In the U.S., he has presented concerts and masterclasses at the Eastman School, Peabody, Lynn and Oberlin Conservatories; Indiana, Southern Methodist, Florida State, Michigan State, Baylor, Temple, Penn State, Ohio State, Minnesota; the universities of Alabama, Colorado, Georgia, Washington, Miami, Texas, Nebraska, and Oregon; plus USC, UCLA, UNLV, UN-Reno, the Sally Fleming Series at his alma mater the University of Michigan, and other venues.


Steven soloed with orchestra at the 2015 IHS Symposium in Los Angeles, performing the Telemann Concerto for Three Horns with Jim Thatcher and Dale Clevenger. During the same concert, he also played the U.S. premiere of the Jiří Havlík Concerto for Horn, with Clevenger conducting.

Steven Gross was awarded the Stich-Punto Commemorative Plaque from the Czech Horn Society for outstanding devotion to Czech horn music. He is only the second American to receive this award.


Dr. Gross is currently Professor of Horn and Head of the Wind, Brass and Percussion Area at the beachside campus of the University of California – Santa Barbara.  His summers include performing as Principal Horn of the Oregon Coast Music Festival Orchestra.

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