« August 2011 | Main | October 2011 »

September 23, 2011

U of M School of Music Super Fan of the Week: Kyle Hutchins

This week we meet SOM Super Fan saxophonist Kyle Hutchins! Kyle is currently a master's student studying with Professor Eugene Rousseau. He recently moved to Minnesota from Texas and he's already figured out where to find some of the best vegan food in Minneapolis.

1. Where are you originally from (hometown)?
Stephenville, TX

2. What instrument(s) or do you play?
Saxophone mostly, as well as flute and clarinet. I can also play some pretty sweet four-chord songs on the guitar.

3. Name the last live performance that blew you away.
A few summers ago I saw Coldplay perform live in Dallas. I had the cheap tickets, sitting on the lawn, but they did a set on mini-stage set up in the back, so my "cheap seats" became front row. It was just after Michael Jackson died, so they played a few covers of his music and it was fantastic!

4. Which musicians have influenced you the most?
My high school band director was a saxophone player, so I was raised the right way, listening to the greats like Cannonball, Bird, and Trane. The biggest moment for me though was the first time I heard Michael Brecker play "Delta City Blues" It was basically that moment when I decided that saxophone was what I was going to do with my life. Although I don't play much jazz anymore, I'm not sure I would be doing music at all if it had not been for jazz band in high school and my exposure to all those great musicians.

5. What do you like most about the U of M School of Music?
The tunnels! I am from Texas, we have to leave one building to get inside of another.

6. Name your favorite musical moment at the SOM (if you have one yet).
Well, I just started my Masters here, so I haven't heard or taken part in any performances yet... but so far I would say getting to hear Dr. Rousseau play in lessons and studio class. People all over the world have to settle for recordings and we get it live every week!

7. Where is your favorite place to eat/hang out on campus and/or the Twin Cities?
Hard Times Cafe!

8. What's most frequently on your playlist?
The Garden State soundtrack. It has lived in my car for the last 4 years.

9. What are the first three things that come to mind when someone mentions Minnesota?
"Dont cha know," "You betcha", and "Howya doin."

10. We hear you're vegan. What's your favorite vegan treat?
Cilantro-Lime Hummus!

kyle hutchins.jpg

U of M School of Music featured in Minnesota Public Radio's Coverage of President Kaler's Inauguration

20110922_eric-kaler6_53.jpeg20110922_eric-kaler5_53.jpegThe University of Minnesota School of Music was featured in Minnesota Public Radio's (MPR) All Things Considered coverage of new U of M President Kaler's Inauguration on Thursday, September 22 at Ted Mann Concert Hall. In this story, School of Music Professor Peter Mercer-Taylor (musicology) was asked for his thoughts on the Inauguration and shared that he "...walked away from the whole thing just very inspired, and ready to buckle down and move into a new era if we can carve one out." See MPR's photo gallery of the Inauguration "Photos: Pomp and circumstance for new U of M president" to view SOM students performing in the Inauguration ceremony as well as the University Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Mark Russell Smith.

September 22, 2011

New University of Minnesota President Kaler tours the U of M School of Music

kaler photo.jpgNew University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler and his wife Karen Kaler toured the School of Music on Wednesday, September 21. They met School of Music students in practice rooms, including Sophie Christian (piano, student of Professor Artymiw), Andres Crovetti (percussion, student of Professors Meza and Sorenson), Cole Hanson (clarinet, student of Professor Fiterstein), Esther Peterson (violin, student of Professor O'Reilly), Joseph Welch (collaborative piano, student of Professor Lovelace), and Elizabeth Windnagel (voice, student of Professor Zabala).

They were also paid a visit to Professor Currie's World Music Ensemble rehearsal where they were treated to a Samba arrangement of "Luckenbach Texas (Back to the Basics of Love)" by Waylon Jennings/Willie Nelson. They visited with the University Symphony Orchestra and Maestro Mark Russell Smith and the orchestra treated President Kaler and his wife with a bit of Brahms's Symphony No. 1.

Check out photos of President Kaler's tour of the School of Music here.

School of Music Faculty and Students Perform at President Kaler's Inauguration, 9/22

Minnesota All banner - 200x240.jpegU of M School of Music faculty and students performed the music for the Inauguration ceremony for new University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler at Ted Mann Concert Hall. The School of Music provided music throughout the ceremony - including works by Brahms, Verdi and the work The Road Home by SOM alumnus/composer Stephen Paulus (M.A. 1976, Ph.D. 1978, composition). Visit the official Inauguration webpage for complete program information.

Congratulations to the School of Music students and faculty who made us proud at the new U President Kaler's Inauguration: Trumpet students, studios of Professors Baldwin and Bordner; Students from Jazz Studies program, conducted by Professor Sorenson; Trombone students, studios of Professors Ashworth and Tranter; String sextet, coached by Professor Konkol; University Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Professor Mark Russell Smith; University Singers, conducted by Professor Saltzman Romey; and Combined University Choirs and University Wind Ensemble, conducted by Professors Saltzman Romey and Kirchhoff.

September 16, 2011

U of M School of Music Super Fan of the Week: Jessica Grimm

jessica grimm.jpgSay hello to Jessica Grimm, Assistant Technical Coordinator at Ted Mann Concert Hall, this week's SOM Super Fan! When she's not working the lights and building sets for productions in Ted Mann Concert Hall, you'll find her tearing it up at a roller derby. Let's find out more about Jessica!

1. Where are you originally from (hometown)?
Georgetown, CO

2. What instrument(s) or do you play (if any, or what voice type are you)?
Flute and piano primarily though I did learn how to play the baritone bugle to march in drum corps in 2003. I've also been known to sing somewhere between a second soprano and alto.

3. What was the last live performance that blew you away?
Irish Fest 2010 with Great Big Sea. They got the entire audience to sing along with not only their music but other pop songs. It was kind of a Glee moment but it was so intense to be sharing that with people who all loved the music.

4. How long have you worked at the U of M School of Music?
Just over 4 years.

5. What do you like most about the U of M School of Music?
I love all the hidden gems, like the organ studio, that no one else seems to know about and then showing them to people.

6. Name your favorite musical moment at the SOM.
The 2007 Collage concert. It was my first Collage concert and I loved the fact that the trumpet group was on the canopy. I remember hearing some guests trying to figure out where the trumpets were playing.

7. Where is your favorite place to eat/hang out on campus and/or the Twin Cities?
Tough choice but I'd probably have to go with True Thai as my favorite place to eat in the Cities.

8. What's most frequently on your playlist?
Usually something by Great Big Sea and a dash of musical theatre.

9. What is something you know about Ted Mann Concert Hall that no one else does?
I doubt that there's anything that I'm truly the only one who knows about it but when we are in a theatrical setting for opera or other such concerts, we are only using one type of lamp for our lighting plot. A few years ago we were using three different types of lamps

10. What are the first three things that come to mind when someone mentions Minnesota?
Roller derby, the Renaissance festival and CONvergence. I'm a geek and proud of it.

September 14, 2011

SOM's Creative Instructional Residencies Initiatives (CIRIs) program is featured in the Minnesota Daily

eliezer.jpgGuest Artist Eliezer Freitas Santos and Professors Scott Currie and David Myers are featured in the Minnesota Daily article "School of Music finds way to offset cuts: teaching the samba" on Creative Instructional Residencies Initiatives (CIRIs) at the U of M School of Music.

U of M SOM Composition Professor James Dillon's "Nine Rivers" premieres at the Miller Theatre in New York City

James+Dillon+Dillon.pngU of M professor James Dillon (composition) is interviewed in Time Out New York in "Interview: James Dillon A Scottish composer's poetic, problematic magnum opus comes to Miller Theatre" by Amanda MacBlane. Dillon is also featured in The Star-Ledger's article "James Dillon's decades-in-the-making work is an ambitious symphonic cycle" by Ronni Reich. Steven Schick will conduct the American premiere of Dillon's "Nine Rivers" at the Miller Theater in New York City on September 14, 16, and 17 and is featured in the New York Times article "Steven Schick Brings 'Nine Rivers' to New York: Tough Assignment for an Accidental Conductor." The event, jointly produced with Works & Process at the Guggenheim, divides the work across three evenings. For more information, visit the Miller Theater's website. Watch a video featuring Steven Schick on the U.S. premiere of "Nine Rivers."

September 9, 2011

U of M School of Music Super Fan of the Week: Brandon Miller

Brandon Miller.jpgThis week's SOM Super Fan is Brandon Miller (D.M.A. candidate, voice, student of Philip Zawisza). He's a familiar face in Ferguson Hall's Room 100 and his engagement work with homeless teens is currently featured in Tutti magazine. Let's meet Brandon!

1. Where are you originally from (hometown)?
Blacksburg, VA

2. What instrument(s) or do you play (or what voice type are you)?
Voice, baritone

3. What was the last live performance that blew you away?
The Minnesota Opera's production of Wuthering Heights.

4. How long have you worked at the U of M School of Music?
4 years.

5. What do you like most about the U of M School of Music?
I like how relaxed and at home I feel there. It's very welcoming.

6. Name your favorite musical moment at the SOM.
Maestra Marin Alsop at the SOM Fall 2009 Convocation...very moving.

7. Where is your favorite place to eat/hang out on campus and/or the Twin Cities?
In my cubicle: I'm there a lot.

8. What's most frequently on your playlist?
Feist: "I feel it all"

9. What is something you know about the voice program/music ed program that no one else does?
Some of the most talented singers are the ones who keep a low profile!

10. What are the first three things that come to mind when someone mentions Minnesota?
Outdoors, partying, biking.

September 2, 2011

U of M School of Music Super Fan of the Week: Anne Barnes

anne photo.jpgIt's Welcome Week at the University of Minnesota and we can't think of anyone more welcoming to students than the School of Music's Assistant Director Anne Barnes. Don't be fooled by her Halloween stint as Sleeping Beauty's Maleficent, she is a kind, wise, and helpful soul. She is also an expert on Steve Perry.

1. Where are you originally from (hometown)?
Stevens Point, Wisconsin

2. What instruments do you play or what voice type are you?
Mezzo-soprano and Percussion (and piano, but VERY poorly).

3. What was the last live performance that blew you away?
I went to the U2 concert at TCF Stadium and was blown away by the spectacle of it. I saw them live 24 years ago, and this was a totally different kind of experience. Still can't decided if it was better or worse, or just different.

4. How long have you worked at the U of M School of Music?
I am starting my 10th year with the SOM!

5. What do you like most about the U of M School of Music?
Our students! We have the BEST students around. I've worked at four different universities over the years, and our students are the best!

6. Name your favorite musical moment at the SOM.
Definitely the Beethoven Ninth concert at Norhrop in 2009. I felt incredibly proud of our students and what they accomplished. That was a great night.

7. Where is your favorite place to eat/hang out on campus and/or the Twin Cities?
I don't really hang out on campus much... I love that the TC area has so much to offer in terms of cool places to eat. Usually, you'll find me somewhere with my family, so anyplace my 9-year-old old can have a good time! I do love a good deli...

8. What's most frequently on your playlist?
I have pretty diverse taste in music, but I love rock music most of all. You'll find a lot of classic 70s rock on my iPod, along with lots of The Clash and Green Day. I am a big Eminem fan. I also like a lot of "bubble gum" 80s pop. And, of course, Journey!

9. What is something you know about Room 100 that no one else does?
I think I'm the only staff member remaining who experienced the "SOMmer Olympics" that used to take place in the building. The staff in room 100 would have chair races in all of the old, rickety chairs; or, we would race around the first-floor rooms to see who could figure out how to turn on and off all of the lights in the classrooms. It's actually more challenging than you think--it seems like every room is different!

10. What kind of necklace does Steve Perry wear for good luck?
Oh, you thought this would be a trick question! But, (sadly?) I know the answer! It's a gold music note, given to him by his mother. She encouraged him throughout his music career--she was a good Mom!

11. What are the first three things that come to mind when someone mentions Minnesota?
Snow, snow and snow. I guess that's pretty predictable, but it's the truth!