Composer, director and clinician, Ryan Main writes music for choirs and bands at all levels. An award-winning composer, his compositions are performed internationally and frequently featured at national and regional American Choral Directors Association Conferences, festivals, Carnegie Hall, and other distinguished events around the world.

Main was born (1984) in Independence, Missouri. His post-secondary education in music began at the Conservatory of Music and Dance at the University of Missouri–Kansas City (2003-2006). There he received a bachelor of music in Music Composition, then pursued graduate studies at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University from (2006-2009) earning a Masters of Music in music composition and a Masters of Music in music education. His teachers at the Peabody Institute included Kevin Puts and Michael Hersch. He has also studied with composer Chen Yi.

Ryan is a sought-after honor choir director and clinician, and a regular presenter on topics such as leadership strategies, choral classroom engagement, composition processes, and choral literature. He has been a guest on the Choralosophy podcast, the Music (Ed) Matters podcast, the Choir Director Corner podcast, the Choir Ninja podcast, and the Choral Catalogue podcast.

Ryan is passionate about quality music education for all. He founded and serves as artistic director of the Youth Chorus of Kansas City, a non-profit organization serving youth of all socio-economic and cultural backgrounds throughout the Kansas City metro area. In addition, he remains engaged with aspiring composers, maintaining mentoring relationships with young creators.

Ryan is a member of the American Choral Directors Association, the Missouri Choral Directors Association, the National Association for Music Education and the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. He currently serves on the National Association for Music Education’s Council on Music Composition.


“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” – Maya Angelou

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