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Alex Shapiro, composer email



Alex Shapiro

Composer, motivational speaker, new media leader.


Alex Shapiro, photo by Paul Chepikian

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Video reel
Talk topics
Speaking resumé


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Shapiro B&W photo



Alex Shapiro, biography


Articulate, passionate and entertaining, Alex Shapiro has become one of the Pacific coast's most familiar concert music composers, and in step with her success she has earned a reputation as an inspiring speaker on the new music scene and beyond. Alex was among the earliest music professionals to use the power of the internet to build a career, and is an engaging lecturer on the topic of new media as it relates to people in all professions.

Alex's enthusiasm for encouraging others is spurred by positive changes she made in her own life. Growing up in Manhattan and studying composition at the Juilliard School while in high school, Alex was trained in the concert music world, but wrote jazz, theater, and pop songs as well. Thanks to her broad musical interests, she spent the first fifteen years of her career composing for film and TV projects in Los Angeles. In the late 1990s Alex rediscovered her love of chamber music and, despite having no recent experience in the concert music field, made the bold choice to pursue that less likely career path full time.


Her decision turned out to be a wise one: now performed and broadcast daily across the U.S. and internationally, Alex's award-winning, expressive music has been recorded by many artists around the globe and is available on over thirty CDs. Through her example, Alex Shapiro offers a clear message that people thrive when they follow their passion.

Alex Shapiro, photo by Paul Chepikian

Defying traditional wisdom yet again, in 2007 she moved from Los Angeles to the beautiful, remote, bridge-less San Juan Islands off the northern coast of Washington State. Thanks to the internet, Alex's career has never been busier, and her music is now as likely to be composed while paddling in her kayak as it is while seated at her piano. With her expertise in musuic, publishing and technology, Alex is in demand as a speaker, essayist, and consultant. For a glimpse of Alex's spirit, scroll through this page!

Shapiro bio



Why just read a bio about someone
when you can hear what they have to say?


CLICK HERE to watch or listen to Alex

on a wide variety of webcasts and podcasts: Shapiro videos


Alex Shapiro, April 2021






A sampling of Alex Shapiro on camera:






April 2021
ASCAP Expo interview

September 2020
ASCAP Expo interview

April 2021
ASCAP Expo interview

March 2020
ASCAP Expo interview

March 2020
Alex on SoundNotion

April 2013
ASCAP Expo interview

April 2010
approach to composing

May 2010
Advice for conference attendees

April 2010







Watch Alex Shapiro speak to audiences

Enjoy 5 minutes of motivating excerpts from two of Alex's speaking engagements:



A sampling of Alex Shapiro on mic:





The Band Room Podcast

March 2021

The Portfolio Composer

March 2016

Band Talk with Charlie Menghini

March 2020

One More Time

March 2018

Relevant Tones, with Seth Boustead

March 2021

Everything Band

March 2018

ASCAP Audio Portraits

December 2007

Music Publishing Podcast

May 2016

Music Publishing Podcast

February 2017




Two of Alex Shapiro's motivating articles




When Alex was asked to write an article about composing music for the online magazine NewMusicBox, she described three distinctly nonmusical concepts behind anyone's ability to promote their work: a sense of self worth, an abundant attitude, and a connection to the joy of what they do. Read her thoughts that apply to anyone in any business, in All the Things You Are: Five Suggestions for Composing Your Happiness:





Mind the Gap


Alex Shapiro weighs in on the paradigm-shifting premises in Tara Hunt's book The Whuffie Factor, with a post on the professional relationships we create with new social network technology.


Mind the Gap

Mind the Gap




Sample presentations


1. Finding Your Own Magic Within

Imagine you're on a relaxing cruise vacation for several days, with little or nothing to attend to in your daily business or home life. Imagine having the freedom and the time to allow your mind and heart to envision just what you would ideally want your life to look and feel like. Wait! You ARE on that cruise vacation! And you DO have the time, at this very moment. Alex will guide the audience through a fantastic journey, encouraging each person's discovery of what they would like to be when they grow up– no matter how grown up they already are.







2. It's Okay if You Don't Like Everything

There are times in our lives when we feel obligated to enjoy something we're told is... good for us. And yet, we can't always manage to appreciate what others value so much. As much pleasure as we get from art and music, experiencing these events can be stressful or even intimidating, if we feel uninformed. Worse still, we risk feeling "not smart or sophisticated enough" if we don't seem to understand what those around us appear to love. Let Alex come to the rescue, as she shows attendees that not only is it entirely unnecessary to be educated about the arts in order to enjoy them, but it's also just fine if you don't like everything you see and hear. Alex will open up new ways of experiencing art and music that will positively change one's perspective.




3. The Stunning Power of Social Networks

What difference does it make if we never tweet on Twitter or show our face on Facebook? Whether in the way we broadcast breaking news around the globe in real time, or share family photos, social networks have made the world very small. Alex will illuminate the power of these tools, and teach attendees how to use them to their best advantage to bring positive experiences into one's personal and business life.



4. Discovering the U in You

It's never too late to reassess your interests, desires and priorities. But where to begin? If you knew what you wanted, wouldn't you already be doing it? Alex will share her unique methods for rapidly unlocking your true path, as she helps you replace the limiting word "should" with the empowering directive, "want."






5. Getting Unstuck

Whether it's the next symphony or the next thank you note, everyone experiences a bout of writer's block now and then. Having composed music on deadlines for over thirty years without missing a beat, Alex will share her many techniques for finding inspiration, even when it can't seem to find you.



6. All The Things You Are: Five Suggestions for Composing Your Happiness

Join Alex as she explores five ideas that apply not only to our careers, but to our personal happiness throughout life:
1. Reconsider the way you perceive yourself and your worth in society.
2. Reject negative assumptions.
3. Change your reality by changing your perceptions toward abundant and positive thinking.
4. Embrace the notion that you are not in a competitive business.
5. Find the spark and the joy that make you come alive.






7. Your Vision Board

Life often presents us with opportunities in an oblique manner! Sometimes we're silently thwarted by our inability to pinpoint what it is that we really want. If we can finally focus intently on what we desire and envision, and avoid thinking rationally about exactly how it will appear, very often that vision becomes reality. Alex will guide attendees through powerful techniques for achieving their goals.



Alex Shapiro
Alex, giving a presentation
at the April 2016
ASCAP "I Create Music" EXPO
in Hollywood, CA.


Public Speaking, Event Moderating

(selected, through 2019; full list post-pandemic continues in C.V.)

Speaker, CIAM ExCo Career Workshops
Praia and Mindelo, Cabo Verde, Africa, 2019

Clinician, British Columbia Music Educators'
Association Conference,
Vancouver, B.C., Canada, 2019

Speaker, CIAM Annual Congress
Mexico City, Mexico, 2018

Speaker, CISAC General Assembly
Warsaw, Poland, 2018

Guest, Everything Band podcast,
hosted by Mark J. Connor, 2018

Guest, One More Time podcast,
hosted by Sean Smith, 2018

Speaker, CIAM ExCo Annual Assembly
Tokyo, Japan, 2017
, 2019

Guest, 1 Track podcast,
hosted by Anthony Lanman, 2017

Guest, Music Publishing Podcast,
hosted by Dennis Tobenski, 2016

Guest, Composer on Fire/
The Portfolio Composer,
hosted by Garrett Hope, 2016

Speaker, ASCAP Composer Career Workshop,
San Francisco Conservatory of Music, CA, 2015

Clinician, The Texas Music Educators
Association Convention,
San Antonio, TX, 2014

Clinician, The Midwest Band and
Orchestra Clinic,
Chicago, IL, 2013, 2018

Guest, Soundnotion podcast,
hosted by David MacDonald, 2013

Speaker, ASCAP Composer Career Workshop,
Yale University, New Haven, CT, 2012

Guest, WPRB-FM Princeton, NJ,
Classical Discoveries
hosted by Marvin Rosen, 2012

Guest, Swedish Radio, The New York Series
hosted by Birgitta Tollan, 2012

Speaker, ASCAP Composer Career Workshop,
University of Southern California,
Los Angeles, CA, 2011

Speaker, ASCAP Composer Career Workshop,
Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, 2011

Presenter, Emcee, Symphonic Voyages,
on Celebrity Cruise Lines 12-day sail to
the Carribean, 2011

Speaker, ASCAP Composer Career Workshop,
ASCAP offices, New York, NY, 2011

Speaker, Chamber Music America
First Tuesdays series,
New York City, NY, 2010

Speaker, ASCAP Composer Career Workshop,
Hollywood, CA, 2010, 2011

Keynote Speaker, Soroptimist
International Luncheon,
Friday Harbor, WA, 2010

Speaker, ASCAP Composer Career Workshop,
San Diego State University, San Diego, CA, 2010

Speaker, NETMCDO Annual Conference,
New York, NY, 2010

Speaker, Minnesota Orchestra
Composer Institute,
Minneapolis, MN, 2009, 2010, 2012

Speaker, ASCAP Composer Career Workshop,
University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, 2009

Speaker, ASCAP Composer Career Workshop,
Philadelphia Music Project, Philadelphia, PA, 2009

Panelist, FCC hearing on broadband access,
Washington, D.C., 2009

Speaker, Making Music Work workshops,
McNally Smith College, St. Paul, MN, 2009

Speaker, Chamber Music America Conference,
The Citicorp Building, New York City, NY, 2006, 2009

Speaker, ASCAP "I Create Music" Expo,
Los Angeles, CA, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009,
2010, 2011, 2016, 2017, 2018

Moderator, Presenter, Composers Salon series,
American Composers Forum of Los Angeles,
2000- present;
conducted live interviews with
over 100 composers

Speaker, Moderator, National Performing Arts Convention,
Colorado Convention Center, Denver, CO, 2008

Guest, WITF-FM Harrisburg, PA, Composing Thoughts
hosted by John Clare, 2008

Guest, Second Life Cable TV Network,
Music Academy Online, 2008, 2009

Featured artist, ASCAP Audio Portrait, 2008

Featured Guest Speaker, Center for Cultural Innovation,
Los Angeles, CA, 2007

Guest, KCSN-FM Los Angeles, CA, The Audition Booth
hosted by Martin Perlich, 2007

Moderator, Composer to Composer interviews,
American Composer Forum of Los Angeles,
at Walt Disney Concert Hall with Gavin Bryars (2003),
Steve Reich (2004), Don Davis (2005), Billy Childs (2005),
Christopher Rouse (2007)

Keynote Speaker, Society of Composers, Inc.
National Conference, Tempe, AZ, 2006

Featured Guest, American Music Makers,
one-hour U.S. syndicated Public Radio show, 2006

Moderator, New Music Festival, Santa Clara University,
Santa Clara, CA, 2006

Guest, Innova podcast series: Measure for Measure
hosted by Philip Blackburn, 2006

Featured Guest, My Auditions,
interactive month-long web chat, 2006

Speaker, Voices on the Edge:
Women in New Music Festival,
Cal State University, Fullerton, CA, 2006

Presenter, Mladi Chamber series concert,
Los Angeles, CA, 2005, 2006

Speaker, Los Angeles Philharmonic,
First Nights series,
Walt Disney Concert Hall, 2004

Guest, WGDR-FM Vermont
Kalvos & Damian's New Music Bazaar, 2004

Moderator, Music Business Chops Workshop,
Los Angeles, CA,2004

Guest, NPR, Theme and Variations
hosted by Will Everett, 2004

Moderator, The Virtuoso Soloist in Film Music,
presented by The Society of Composers & Lyricists
Paramount Pictures Studio, Los Angeles, CA, 2004

Moderator, Launching Your Film Scoring Career,
presented by The Society of Composers & Lyricists and
The American Composers Forum of Los Angeles,
Los Angeles, CA, 2004

Guest, KXLU-FM Los Angeles, CA,
Trilogy, 2000

Speaker, Business Tools for Composers workshop,
The American Composers Forum, Los Angeles, CA, 2003

Speaker, The International Alliance of Women in Music
International Congress, London, England, 1997

Guest, KPFK-FM Los Angeles, CA, For the Record
hosted by Samm Brown, 1997

Speaker, Grammy® in the Schools,
National Association of Recording Arts and Sciences
Los Angeles, CA, 1995

Speaker, The Film Music Society,
Los Angeles, CA, 1994

Guest, KPFK-FM Los Angeles Music of the Americas
hosted by Jeannie Pool, Los Angeles, CA, 1996

Speaker, Moderator, The Society of Composers & Lyricists,
with The Hollywood Reporter, for The Film and TV Music
State of the Art annual conferences and many other seminars,
The Directors Guild, Los Angeles, CA, 1993-2005






Alex, addressing an audience at the April 2017 ASCAP "I Create Music" EXPO in Hollywood, CA.

Alex Shapiro


Guest lectures

(selected, through 2019; full list post-pandemic continues in C.V.)

Mt. San Antonio College, 2019

Shenandoah University, 2018

University of Hawai'i, 2015, 2017

Columbia College, 2016
Roosevelt University, 2016

University of Montana, 2016

The Wyoming Festival, 2016

University of British Columbia, 2016

San Francisco Conservatory of Music, 2015

Fort Hays State University, 2015

University of Kansas City, Missouri, 2014

Cathage College, 2014

State Univ. of New York Fredonia, 2014

NY State Music School Assn (NYSSMA), 2014

Southern Oregon University, 2013

Washington State University, 2013

Western Washington University, 2013, 2014

Yale University, 2012

University of Wyoming, 2012

University of Southern California, 2011

Colorado State University, 2011

The Ohio State University, 2011

Murray State University, 2011

Capital University, 2010, 2011

University of Minnesota, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2017

San Diego State University, 2010

Cornish College of the Arts, 2008, 2009

University of Chicago, 2009

University of Puget Sound, 2009

McNally Smith College, 2009

University of California, Santa Barbara, 2005, 2006, 2009

University of Washington, Friday Harbor Laboratories, 2008

Spring Street International School, 2008

University of Arizona, Tempe, Guest Lecturer, 2006

Manhattan School of Music, 2005

The Walden School, 2004

American Composers Forum of Los Angeles, 2003

California Institute of the Arts, 2003

Sierra College, 2003

Santa Clara University, 2003

California State University Sacramento, 2003

California State University, Fullerton, 2002

Fullerton College, 2002

Los Angeles High School of the Arts, 2001, 2002






Get an even better sense of this speaker:
See Alex in the context of the world around her,
through the nature-oriented lens of her popular blog,
Notes from the Kelp,
and in the social networks.

blog link


Email Alex!


For many more video interviews,
as well as MANY musical performances,
visit Alex's YouTube channel!






In 2022 Alex was invited to join the distinguished roster of Conn-Selmer Education clinicians. Her first master class for the company's thoughtfully curated Rehearse & Renew series started off the quarter. You can read about it HERE.



Conn-Selmer Series


Alex Shapiro, photo by Paul Chepikian


Contact Alex


To contact Alex Shapiro,
email is best.
Click here to send Alex a note email
You can even send a fax
(what's that?) to:
(270) 916-0093.
To download a photograph
for print or web,
please click here photo

Alex Shapiro photo

To download a .pdf of a complete
narrative bio and C.V.,
please click here
Narrative bio and C.V.

narrative bio and C.V.

To obtain a
short program bio for print,
please click here
Program Bio

Program Bio
  Laura Krider

Alex is very fortunate to have a fantastic professional associate helping her each day with running her business: meet Laura Krider! meet Laura Krider


Need assistance with anything from Alex or Activist Music LLC? In addition to always being able to contact Alex, don't hestitate to email Laura.




Please visit the other pages of this website
to experience Alex in her natural musical habitat!
The links below lead to pages with MP3s and much more info.







Alex Shapiro
Alex Shapiro, photo by Paul Chepikian
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