Christopher Kriz attributes the successful combination of his musical and theatrical interests to his experiences as a student at College of DuPage.
“When I enrolled at College of DuPage, my interests were divided between music and theater. Eventually, those interests collided,” he said.
While studying music theory and composition at College of DuPage with music professor Lee Kesselman, Kriz also worked under the guidance of Richard Holgate as a theater technician for the McAninch Arts Center. In addition, he had the opportunity to mix sound for world-class touring artists as well as resident groups such as the College of DuPage Jazz Ensemble, directed by music professor Tom Tallman.
“This exposure to so many musical and theatrical experiences was an education that simply could not be found elsewhere,” he said.
After being asked by Theatre Director Connie Canaday Howard to compose original music for a student production of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” something clicked and Kriz dove deeper into composing for the theater.
“While still a student, I began designing sound and composing music for Buffalo Theatre Ensemble productions. Being able to work so closely with a professional theater company was the best education I could have received,” he said.
Today, Kriz is an award-winning composer and theatrical sound designer based in Chicago. Winner of five Joseph Jefferson Awards with a total of 21 nominations, Kriz has been designing professionally for companies all over the country, including Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Northlight Theatre, Court Theatre, Writers Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Victory Gardens Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Kansas City Repertory Theatre and Alabama Shakespeare Festival.
In addition to his many projects, Kriz is now a company member of Buffalo Theatre Ensemble, the company he began his career with as a student. Kriz also continues to return to COD and design the College Theatre production of “A Christmas Carol,” a duty he started as a student and has continued ever since.
In 2017, he was named one of the College’s Distinguished Alumni.
“Without the broad range of artistic experiences and opportunities I gained at College of DuPage, I wouldn’t be the artist I am today,” he said.