Composer Mark Eliot Jacobs, born in 1960, lives in southern Oregonís Rogue River Valley. He is a frequent participant in the musical life of the valley: principal trombonist in the Rogue Valley Symphony, and musician with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, among other engagements. He is an adjunct instructor at Southern Oregon University where he has taught in the areas of music theory, composition, and low brass. Mark holds the degree Doctor of Music from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois in Music Composition (1986).
Mark has written a wide range of music, including orchestra, band, musical theater, and chamber music. The 2011 production of Bertolt Brechtís Caucasian Chalk Circle at Southern Oregon University, Ashland, Oregon featured Markís original musical score. The Medford Mail Tribune declared it an ìamazing collection of original compositions.” In 2012 he completed The Orchard City under a commission from the Youth Symphony of Southern Oregon for their 25th anniversary. It is scheduled for performance in March 2013.
Las Ranas de Katanchel (2010) is dedicated to MÛnica Hern·ndez and AnÌbal Gonz·lez of the Hacienda Katanchel, located near MÈrida in the Mexican state of Yucat·n. It is a tone poem built upon two basic themes: the ecology of the hacienda and Mayan mythology from both the Yucatec and QuichÈ Maya. The ancient book of the QuichÈ, the Popol Vuh, figures prominently. Recordings of the frogs (ìlas ranasî), birds, and insects of the Yucatan play a prominent role in both the natural and mythological aspects of the piece.