Friday, February 5, 2016

Four Decades of AU Music Alumni Gather

Ashland University Department of Music held its annual alumni reception during the OMEA - Ohio Conference hosted by Tom Reed, Marla Butke and Ron Blackley. Meeting at Palomino Restaurant in Cincinnati, we had a chance to enjoy the company of graduates ranging over 4 decades from 1974 to 2015 including:

Tonya Carper Kral
Marty  Kral  
Jeff  Conklin, 1974
Dave  Wolbert, 1976
Tony  Novotny, 1985
Danell Smart Allar, 1994
Vicki  Mikkelsen, 2000
Julie  Strebler, 2002
Karen Gravagna Mahoney, 2002
Geoffrey  Zimmerly, 2003
Anne Patton Teschler, 2003
Brad  Allen, 2004
Megan  Routh, 2007
Emily Plummer Garlock, 2007
Laura Mohn Schantz, 2007
Christine Drabek Wedell, 2007
Katy  Kohman, 2009
Cassandre  Bull, 2009
Rachel Blenman Caldwell, 2010
Amanda Stahlecker Ballreich, 2010
Aly  Horn, 2011
Margo George Trinter, 2011
Lauren Massaro Colotto, 2012
Alex  VanScoy, 2014
Caleb  Stout, 2015
Devyn  Renninger, 2015

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Emmy-Nominated Composer to Visit AU

Ashland University Department of music will host a visit by Emmy-nominated composer and Wooster native Philip Giffin on Tuesday, Feb. 9 at 1:40 p.m. in Room 303 of the Center of the Arts. His presentation will take place in the Music Theory IV class, but guests are welcome to attend.

Mr. Giffin will talk about careers in music including his experience as a composer/orchestrator for TV and films. As a composer living and working in Los Angeles, California, he has composed extensively for television & film including 93 episodes of the Disney animated cartoon called Darkwing Duck. Disney gave him a full orchestra every week to accomplish this opportunity and monumental task. In addition to composing music for several other television episodic's, he has orchestrated and written additional music for blockbuster features such as, Die Hard I, Die Hard II, Lethal Weapon I, Lethal Weapon II, Say Anything, Little Mermaid, Pee Wee's Big Adventure & more. He is also a music director for a Cirque du Solei's live stage performances.

For more information about Philip Giffin, visit his website at

Thursday, January 28, 2016

AU Concert Band and Jazz Orchestra Musicians Selected for OPCICA Honors

Four members of the Ashland University Concert Band and five members of the Ashland University Jazz Orchestra were selected to be members of the 2016 Ohio Private College Instrumental Conductors Association All Ohio Collegiate Honors Concert Band and Honors Jazz Ensemble. The 29th Annual OPCICA Honors Festival was hosted on Jan. 23 and 24 by Muskingum University and the concert was held at the Pritchard Laughlin Civic Center in Cambridge, Ohio.

Those selected for the Honors Concert Band were music education majors Rachel Crow of Reynoldsburg and Jessica Barnhouse of Norwich, criminal justice major Nik Psota of Hinckley and accounting major Brett Stecker of Mansfield. Those selected for the Honors Jazz Ensemble were music education major Jaylynn Buchmelter of Wintersville, music and business administration major Cody Henderson of Bellevue, mathematics and language arts education major Alexandria Sandwisch of Elmore, psychology major Derek Rangel of Vermillion and Frank Stanek of Mansfield.

Nominations for the Honors Band and Jazz Ensemble were submitted by conductors at each of the member institutions. These students were selected from over 150 nominees. Both ensembles rehearsed for two days and then presented a gala concert.

The Ohio Private College Instrumental Conductors Association, founded in 1987, held its first collegiate honors band festival on Jan. 24, 1988. Currently comprised of 20 member colleges and universities, the primary purpose of the organization is to develop a closer network of communication and resource sharing among the instrumental departments, divisions, or conservatories of the various privately funded institutions of higher education within the state of Ohio.

An additional purpose is to sponsor an annual honors festival featuring an Honors Concert Band and an Honors Jazz Ensemble comprised of instrumental students from the participating schools. These festivals have enriched the lives of thousands of college instrumentalists as well as the conductors from the member institutions. The students are together for two days, and prepare the concert in three rehearsal.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Senior Trumpet Recital, Jan. 24 at 5 p.m.

The first concert of the spring 2016 semester will be held on Sunday, January 24 at 5 p.m. featuring music education major Hannah Phillips (Plymouth) as she performs her senior trumpet recital. Accompanied by pianist Susan Gregg, Hannah's concert program will include Sonata for Trumpet and Piano by Kent Kennan, George Gershwin's Someone to Watch Over Me arranged by Joseph Turrin, and Nightsongs by Richard Peaslee. The concert is free and open to the public.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Spring 2016 Music Event Schedule Released

Ashland University Department of Music releases its official event schedule for Spring 2016. From junior and senior recitals to several choral and band concerts, opera scenes and the Maplerock Jazz Festival, the slate of performances offers something for everyone.

The full schedule can be accessed online at, in-person at the Ashland University Box Office or contact Tricia Applegate to have a copy mailed to your home. You can also stay up-to-date on the latest by following Ashland University Music on Facebook.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

AU Instrumental Ensembles Close Fall Music Events

The Department of Music at Ashland University concludes the fall semester featuring its instrumentalists with performances at the student chamber ensembles recital and the Winter Festival Band Concert. Both concerts are free and open to the public.

On Tuesday, December 8 at 7:30 p.m. in the Elizabeth Pastor Recital Hall, several student chamber ensembles perform including the saxophone ensemble under the direction of Dr. Thomas Reed, as well as brass, string and percussion ensembles instructed by Michael Metcalf, Jane Reed and Jeffrey Neitzke, respectively. Mr. Neitzke also leads a jazz combo which will perform.

On Saturday, December 12 at 7:30 p.m. in Hugo Young Theatre, the Winter Festival Band Concert will present the Ashland University Wind Ensemble directed by Gary Ciulla, Ashland University Director of Bands, and the Ashland Area Community Concert Band (AACCB) under the direction of Leonard Salvo.

The Ashland University Wind Ensemble is comprised of the outstanding wind and percussion players at the University and from the community.  The ensemble begins Saturday's concert with Ralph Vaughan Williams' English Folk Song Suite followed by Samuel Hazo's "Whisper to Their Souls" which is based on "Greensleeves," and Robert Sheldon's collection of Irish street ballads, "Longford Legend." The Wind Ensemble closes their portion of the program with "Sleigh Ride" by Leroy Anderson.

After a brief intermission, the 65-member Ashland Area Community Concert Band takes the stage. Established in 1993, the ensemble is designed for both university students and members of the Ashland community to continue their musical study and creative activity. The Community Band's program begins with Clare Grundman's lovely and robust medley of sailing songs including "Hornet and Peacock," "Lowlands," "What Shall We Do with a Drunken Sailer?" and "Rio Grande;" and is followed by Jan Van der Roost's "Rikudim" which includes four Israeli folk dances. Their program also includes Sousa's "Nobles of the Mystic Shrine," Holst's "In the Bleak Midwinter," and concludes with Sheldon's "A Most Wonderful Christmas."

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

TubaChristmas at AU This Saturday

The local holiday favorite TubaChristmas returns to Ashland University's Hugo Young Theatre on Saturday, December 5 at noon with Mayor Glen Stewart at the "Celebrity Tubist."  The concert is free and open to the public and invites area tuba, euphonium and baritone players to perform. Musician registration will begin at 10:00 a.m. followed by a rehearsal at 10:20 a.m.

TubaChristmas is an idea conceived by Harvey Phillips, Professor of Tuba at Indiana University. Mr. Phillips wanted to demonstrate to the public what a beautiful sound a mass ensemble of tubas and euphoniums could make and to provide an opportunity for fellow low brass players to celebrate the season with the community. TubaChristmas is dedicated to the memory of Mr. William J. Bell.  It’s a fun, holiday tradition the whole family can enjoy.

The registration fee for participating musicians is $10.00 and includes a 2015 TubaChristmas button.  The TubaChristmas carol book is also available for $10.00. Musicians are asked to bring their own folding stand.