Stephen P. Johnson is the founding dean of the College of Music and the Arts at Azusa Pacific University. Before coming to Azusa, he was associate professor of theory and composition and dean of the School of Church Music at Southwestern Seminary.  His repertory includes various solo, chamber ensemble, large ensemble, and choral/orchestral performing forces that have been performed in recitals, concert halls, and music festivals across the United States.  Johnson studied composition with Edwin T. Childs, George Flynn, Kurt Westerburg, Frederick Lesemann, Donald Crockett, and James Hopkins.

Some of Johnson’s performances and honors include winning the 1998 Phi Beta Mu Composition Competition for Illinois resident composers for his Fanfare on the Austrian Hymn; the selection of his woodwind quintet Windy City, for the 1999 Crane Festival of New Music with George Crumb; his orchestral work Before Dawn’s Twilight being selected for performance in the highly competitive New Music for Orchestra Concert by the USC Symphony in 2003; his Four Preludes of the River winning the 2004 Klienman Competition of DePaul University; the premiere in 2005 of his commissioned piece Libera me (revised) at the Hall of Crucifixion-Resurrection in Hollywood; a commission in 2006 to accompany The Crucifixion and The Resurrection paintings at Forest Lawn, Hollywood, recorded at 20th Century Fox Studios; and the commissioned work Peace Ascends for the Southwestern Master Chorale which had a New York premier in 2011 at Lincoln Center.


Johnson: Peace Ascends I. Agnus Dei
Johnson: Peace Ascends II. Where Charity and Love
Johnson: Peace Ascends III. Illumination
Johnson: Peace Ascends
Johnson: Four Preludes of the River
Johnson: Shall We Gather at the River
Johnson: escape
Johnson: The Sound of the Sea

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