The Creation of a Conducting Seminar Outreach Program

Russel Adrian, Choral Conducting student, will produce a conducting seminar outreach program, offering professional development opportunities for University of Minnesota School of Music students to work with an established civic ensemble in the Twin Cities Metro Area. Students from the Choral Conducting Seminar, MUS 8450, will lead sectionals and rehearsals with the South Metro Chorale in preparation of a masterworks concert of Joseph Haydn's The Creation on May 2nd and 4th, 2014 with professional soloists and orchestra. This project will provide seminar students an environment to implement skills and knowledge obtained in class as well as the opportunity to work as guest clinicians. The seminar will offer South Metro Chorale individualized attention in learning difficult passages and overall development of a better corporate sound. While emphasis will be given to the teaching new music, an equal importance will be given to the development of healthy vocal production and the exploration of vocal pedagogy specific to community choruses.

R-Word Campaign Concert

Choral Conducting student, Caroline Hand, will work with Blaine High School Choir in April and May of 2014 to produce an "R-Word Campaign Event" concert. R-Word Campaigns are grassroots efforts of "Spread the Word to End the Word," a movement seeking to eliminate the derogatory and hurtful use of the word "retard" or "retarded." The Blaine High School Choir will perform Nathan Jones's I Would Live in Your Love by G. Shirmer's Dale Warland Choral Series, written honor of this event, which includes instrumental accompaniment will feature double woodwind quintet plus percussion performed by Music Education and Music Therapy students from the University of Minnesota. In addition to Nathan's piece, members of the Blaine High School Chamber Choir will learn We Are One by Ysaye Barnwell. They will then teach the song to their peers in special education. This interaction will create the core bond between choir members and students in special education. The entire concert will be performed on May 8, 2014.

2014 U of M Brass Symposium

The School of Music will host the 2014 University of Minnesota Brass Symposium, directed by U of M Trombone Professor Thomas Ashworth, on Friday, April 4th - Sunday, April 6th. The Symposium will include Friday and Saturday evening concerts in Ted Mann Concert Hall featuring the the Copper Street Brass Quintet, the Lake Wobegon® Brass Band, the U of M Trombone Choir & Jazz 'Bones and the Sheldon Theatre Brass Band. 
On Friday morning and afternoon, U of M and guest brass ensembles will present outreach concerts at area schools, nursing homes, and hospitals. Daytime events on Saturday and Sunday will include guest brass ensemble performances and panel discussions focusing on outreach and community engagement. There will also be displays of brass instruments, music, recordings, and accessories from 8 am to 5 pm on Saturday, April 5. This event is made possible by a College of Liberal Arts Imagine Grant for Special Events, the U of M School of Music, and by a grant from the U of M School of Music Community Engagement Leadership Team. Learn more at

A Murder Mystery Concert

Brian Messier, DMA conducting student, has created a Murder Mystery Concert. The University of Minnesota Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Craig Kirchhoff, will perform a "Murder Mystery Concert" in Ted Mann Recital Hall on Tuesday, November 26th, 2013. The U of M/ Guthrie Theatre BFA Actor Training Program will provide the dramatic talent, animations to advance the plot between musical selections will be made by Luisa Levine of Oberlin College, and a U of M jazz ensemble will provide the leitmotifs for the characters and suspects. Audience members will take part in the performance as active witnesses of this dramatic staged murder mystery concert.

Cantus - University of Minnesota Residency Program

The Cantus-University of Minnesota Residency Program is an innovative collaboration with the School of Music that integrates the teaching artistry of Cantus Vocal Ensemble with the University's instructional and community engagement initiatives. The focus of this program is to train and mentor future performers and music educators using the unique approach Cantus brings to collaborative music making.

As an ensemble, Cantus works without a conductor, rehearsing and performing as chamber musicians. This method allows Cantus to be more flexible and adaptive, and fosters its ability to embrace new ideas in the areas of programs, commissions and performance presentation. The School of Music recognizes this model as a methodology that can benefit both performance and music education students in their growth as versatile teaching artists of the 21st Century.

Integral to the Cantus mission is its commitment to preserve and deepen music education within schools. The Cantus-UMN Residency Program is an extension of the award winning High School Residency Program, which targets inner city, suburban and exurban high school choirs in the Twin Cities for one year of sustained coaching and rehearsals with members of Cantus. The tiered connection between high school and collegiate singers with the members of Cantus allows young adults at every stage of development to receive important training in skills that inform their individual and collective musicianship within educational and performance settings.

Cantus and the University of Minnesota School of Music are mutually committed to an ongoing, sustained partnership, which provides singers of all levels with meaningful opportunities for artistic growth and educational exchange.

The Vocal Department Celebrates Wagner's Ring Cycle

In collaboration with the Minnesota Concert Opera and the Wagner Society of the Upper Midwest, the School of Music's vocal department will celebrate and experience the artistry of the Wagner's cycle in an abbreviated four hour orchestrated version by David Seaman. Selected students will be invited to observe all rehearsals and work with the artists. There will also be a master-class led by Jane Eaglen.

This performance will be presented on September 13 & 15, 2013, at The Cowles Center, Minneapolis.

Students Engage Seniors Through Arts Connection!

This summer, some of the School of Music's graduate students will bring their talents to seniors. The goal of the Arts Connection Recitals is to bridge the gap between college-aged musicians and the elderly through two performance opportunities, increasing the quality of life for seniors through interpersonal relationships and live music performance and creating opportunities for students to study and perform additional repertoire, in the context of building relationships with senior citizens.

Date: 04/24/2013

Laura Hynes turns her D.M.A. recital into a unique performance titled Raise Your Voice, exploring issues of Violence Against Women through the ages via art song, text, dance and staging. The event was sponsored by a Community Engagement grant through the School of Music, and by the Aurora Center for Advocacy and Education.

Singers Laura Hynes, Beth Bayley, Elizabeth Windnagel, Sara Yoder, and Lauren Feider were joined by dancer Samantha Phillippi - the currently reigning Miss Minneapolis, guitarist Maja Radovanlija, and pianist Mijin Choi.

Repertoire includes songs by Libby Larsen, David Evan Thomas, William Bolcom, Kurt Weill, Leonard Bernstein, Germaine Tailleferre, Benjamin Britten, Jake Heggie, Aaron Copland, Ben Moore, and Reynaldo Hahn.

Listen to Laura Hynes (D.M.A candidate, voice, student of Adriana Zabala) discuss this event on Classical Minnesota Public Radio.

Building Connections with Cooperating Teachers

Dr. Keitha Hamann, Professor of Music Education, hosted a reception for cooperating K-12 music teachers who have worked with School of Music music education students. The event honored their contribution to the development of School of Music students, and offered an opportunity for both teachers and School of Music faculty to converse and work together to improve the student teaching experience.

La Vie Par La Melodie

On Monday, May 14th 2013 Professor Wendy Zaro-Mullin's French Vocal Literature class presented an interactive experience of French mélodie musical program centered around the life stories of the senior residents of Walker Methodist Health Center. Residents received a letter asking to share their life stories relating to four key romantic themes and a short explanation of each theme. During the program, each student shared a story pertaining to the Lied they have chosen to perform. This program offered students the opportunity to impart their knowledge of French mélodie and romantic themes to the residents, while the residents brought forth their life experiences to the students. In addition to enhancing the students' understanding of creating a musical experience for a unique audience outside of the School of Music, this project afforded students the opportunity to learn many of the logistical details required to execute a recital such as; reserving a venue, writing program notes and translations, collaborating with accompanists, and writing grants.