Performing for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, University of Notre Dame 2016
photo credit: Matt Cashore


Dr. Emerson Eads currently serves as Director of Choral Activities at Minot State University. As a composer and conductor, Emerson has devoted himself to music of social concern. His Mass for the Oppressed, a setting of the Ordinary of the Mass featuring textual interpolations by his brother Evan Eads and a Credo adapted from the diary of Pope Francis, reflects on some of the most poignant social issues of our time. The Mass was written to muster public support for the Fairbanks Four, Native Alaskans from the composer’s hometown who were wrongfully imprisoned for eighteen years. Eads’ cantata “…from which your laughter rises” was written for the mothers of the Fairbanks Four. It was conducted to acclaim, paired in a concert featuring Haydn’s Stabat Mater. His newest opera, The Princess Sophia, is about the sinking of the SS Princess Sophia. It was premiered in Juneau, Alaska, on October 25th, 2018—the disaster’s centennial–to rave review in Opera Magazine. His most recent large-scale project, A Prairie Cantata, recovers lyrics from a neglected North Dakota woman poet and was premiered with the Minot State University Choir.

Dr. Eads studied choral conducting with Carmen-Helena Tellez at the University of Notre Dame, working with eminent choral conductors including Joseph Flummerfelt, Stephen Cleobury, Anne Howard Jones, and Peter Phillips. Prior to his graduate work, he studied composition with Alaskan composer John Luther Adams.


Eads’ Published Songs in North Star Music Anthologies

Love Is, & When you are Old, are now published and included in Volumes 1 & 2 of these new soprano anthologies. Recordings will be forthcoming, but until then they have both been recorded and are available on my youtube channel:...

Eads Wins Third Place in American Prize 2021

Emerson Eads, assistant professor and Director of Choral Activities at Minot State University, had been awarded Third Place in the American Prize in Composition, 2021, in the vocal chamber music division, for his song-cycle The Gleaners for soprano, mezzo-soprano,...

We Will Shine gets a virtual debut

Featuring tenor, Edward Graves; alto, Cheryl Nilsen Poetry by Eran Eads Music by Emerson Eads The Minot Chamber Chorale The Minot State University Concert Choir The Western Plains Youth Ensemble...


Mass for the Oppressed

Song of the Sikuliaq

Color of Gold

Composition Catalogue