Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Ashland Area Chorus Invites Locals to Sing in Abbreviated Summer Session

The Ashland Area Chorus, a non-auditioned mixed choir of 40-60 participants, invites local singers to join them for the short summer session and to perform with the Ashland Symphony Orchestra. The 4-week rehearsal schedule begins on June 6 and continues for four consecutive Mondays including: June 6, 13, 20, 27. Each rehearsal is from 7-8:30 p.m. at Ashland University in Room 242 of the Center for the Arts (formerly the Arts and Humanities building). The session will conclude on Sunday, July 3 with a live performance of light, popular, and patriotic tunes with the Ashland Symphony Orchestra for the Pops In the Park concert at Brookside Park Band Shell.

The Chorus is open to the entire Ashland community and beyond, with previous singers travelling from Richland, Medina, Wayne, Holmes, and Crawford counties. Previous choral experience is helpful and encouraged. While there are no strict age limits, singers under 18 must be approved by the director. There is no cost to the singer for the summer session.

The AAC performs in several concerts each year on the AU campus and with the Ashland Symphony Orchestra. Recent appearances have included subscription concerts with the ASO (including Orff’s Carmina Burana, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, and Mendelssohn’s Elijah), Ashland University choral concerts (including Handel's Messiah and the Brahms Requiem) and summer pops concerts in the park.

Current members should encourage their talented friends and neighbors to attend the first summer rehearsal to join this unique community opportunity. For further information, please contact the AU Director of Choral Activities, Dr. Ron Blackley, at rblackle@ashland.edu or (419) 289-5114. Or, simply show up on June 6.

Friday, May 13, 2016

AU Choirs Touring Northern Ohio, WV and DC

Ashland University alumni and friends are cordially invited to attend an upcoming concert of the Ashland University Choir and Chamber Singers as they travel close to you. The  2016 tour presents concerts scheduled at various churches in northern Ohio, West Virginia and Washington DC. The following performances are free and open to the public.
  • Monday, May 16, 7:30 p.m. at Zion Lutheran Church, 503 Columbus Ave, Sandusky OH, 419.625.2112 
  • Tuesday, May 17, 7:30 p.m. at Messiah Lutheran Church, 21485 Lorain Rd, Fairview Park OH, 440.331.2405 
  • Wednesday, May 18, 7 p.m. at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 309 Baldwin St, Morgantown WV, 304.599.0620 
  • Thursday, May 19, 7:30 p.m. at St. Joseph's Catholic Church, 313 2nd St NE, Washington DC, 202.547.1223 
ron blackley new crop (1)Under the direction of Dr. Rowland Blackley the 2016 Tour program includes selections from throughout the 2015-2016 concert season. Pieces by American composers Morten Lauridsen, Jean Berger, Eric Whitacre, and Moses Hogan are featured along with those of Schütz and Mendelssohn. The Ashland University Chamber Singers will contribute madrigals from the Renaissance and more popular charts from the twentieth century.  Selections from Handel's Messiah round out the program. There’s something for every choral taste!

Guenther headshot cropThe choirs are accompanied by Dr. Timothy E. Guenther, University Organist and Director of Music Ministry at Gethsemane Lutheran Church in Columbus, Ohio. He teaches applied organ and harpsichord, as well as courses in fundamentals of basic musicianship, and serves as accompanist as needed for the University Choir, Chamber Singers, and Ashland Area Chorus. He holds degrees in organ performance from the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester, the University of Alabama and The American Conservatory of Music.

The Ashland University Choir is composed of singers representing many academic majors across campus. Each year the members are selected by private audition and rehearse three days a week. The ensemble performs programs of unaccompanied literature of all eras as well as major works with orchestra.  

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Concert Band Tours to Area High Schools

The Ashland University Band is the only campus group that arrives early to campus in the fall and stays after finals in the spring to perform at graduation and on tour. Under the direction of Gary Ciulla, the Ashland University Concert Band will perform at three area high schools for their 2016 Spring Tour as follows:

  • Thursday, May 12 at 9:30 a.m.: Williard High School
  • Thursday, May 12 at 2 p.m.: New London High School
  • Friday, May 13 at 11 a.m.: Bellevue High School

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Music Students Honored

As the 2015-2016 academic year concludes, the Department of Music recognized students for their academic and performance accomplishments. At the University's Academic Honors Convocation on April 24, outstanding academic students from each Department were recognized including the following music students:
  • Hannah Wise, Sophomore Academic Award 
  • Abigail Brady, Junior Academic Award
  • Rachel Crow, Senior Academic Award
The Spring Honors Recital featured performances by those students who accomplished exceptional musical performances in the 2016 Spring semester including vocalists Jacob Poiner, Elisha Hofer, Sarah Napier, Fatima Imani Smith; and instrumentalists Jaylynn Buchmelter (trombone), Nik Psota (trumpet), Chanel Bluntschly (saxophone), Dominic Febbo (guitar) and Emily Minns (flute).

At the conclusion of the Spring Honors Recital, several other awards were presented including: 
  • The Ohio Collegiate Music Educators Association (OCMEA) Leadership Award to Hannah Wise, Rachel Crow, Jaylynn Buchmelter, Jessie Barnhouse and Jacob Poiner
  • The Zach Spier Memorial Award for outstanding contribution from a non-music major to Emily Sparks and Alexandria Sandwisch
  • Most Improved Music Major to Jessica Barnhouse
  • Outstanding Student Teacher to Shayne Smith
  • Outstanding Performer to Emily Minns and Jaylynn Buchmelter
  • Outstanding Music Major to Hannah Phillips.

The Department also recognized the graduating senior music majors at a special dinner in their honor. Congratulations and all the best in their future to (l-f) Hannah Phillips, Rachel Crow, Shayne Smith, Jessica Barnhouse, and Fatima Imani Smith (not pictured).

Friday, May 6, 2016

Spring Band Concert to Honor Senior Graduates

Ashland University Department of Music concludes an eventful 2015-2016 academic year on Sunday, May 8 at 4:00 p.m. in Hugo Young Theatre with the annual Spring Band Concert. The Ashland Area Community Concert Band under the direction of Leonard Salvo, and the Ashland University Concert Band directed by Gary Ciulla will perform and senior Concert Band members will be recognized for their dedication and contribution to the AU Band program. Admission to the concert is complimentary, and open to the public.

The Ashland Area Community Concert Band will open the concert with selections including Alfred Reed's A Jubilant Overture which is written in the natural exuberance of young spirits in springtime; Frank Ticheli's An American Elegy which was composed in memory of those who lost their lives at Columbine High School and to honor the survivors; along with a medley of songs from the awarding winning musical Fiddler on the Roof. The Community Band will close their portion of the concert with Castle Gap by Clifton Williams, a march depicting the strength and vigor of the pioneers in dealing with a rugged terrain and climate.

After a brief intermission, the University Concert Band will perform a program of different cultures with Santiago Lope's Gallito, a paso-doble in the Flamenco style; Franz Joseph Haydn's Armida Overture from his three act opera set in Jerusalem and First Suite in E-flat by British composer Gustav Holst. Trumpet soloists Alexandria Sandwisch (Elmore), Nikolaus Psota (Hinckley) and Hannah Phillips (Plymouth) will be featured in Leroy Anderson's Bugler's Holiday. The concert will conclude with Brant Karrick's Bayou Breakdown, a fun and whimsical fugue with a Cajun twist.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Spring Honors Recital Tonight

Tonight (Monday, May 2 at 7:30 p.m.) is the Spring 2016 Honors Recital in the Elizabeth Pastor Recital Hall. Students who accomplished exceptional musical work during the semester will showcase their talents including: vocalists Jacob Poiner, Elisha Hofer, Sarah Napier, Fatima Imani Smith; and instrumentalists Jaylynn Buchmelter (trombone), Nik Psota (trumpet), Chanel Bluntschly (saxophone), Dominic Febbo (guitar) and Emily Minns (flute). Free & Open to the Public.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Spring Choral Concert to Feature A Cappella and Folk Music

The Ashland University Chamber Singers, the Women's Chorus and the a cappella ensemble Surround Sound present their spring choral concert on Sunday, May 1 at 4 p.m. in the Jack and Deb Miller Chapel.  The performance is free and open to the public.

Dr. Rowland Blackley, Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities, will conduct the Chamber Singers as they perform selections made famous by the best singing groups of their generation while tracing some of the history of the a cappella pop/jazz choral movement over several decades. 

The Chamber Singers will sing Ward Swingle's arrangement of J. S. Bach's Bourree made popular by the Swingle Singers, and Java Jive by Drake and Oakland as arranged by Shaw and sung by the Manhattan Transfer; to Daryl Runswick's arrangement of Paul McCartney's Blackbird as performed by the King’s Singers; Peter Eldridge's Come Home as sung by New York Voices; and Peder Karlsson's Gøta as recorded by the Real Group.

Continuing with the a cappella-theme, the student-led a cappella ensemble Surround Sound will perform three tunes including Bastille's Pompeii, Meghan Trainor's Dear Future Husband and George Ezra's Budapest. 

Directed by Elizabeth Slade, the Women's Chorus will perform from a different genre including folk tunes from the British Isles and Latin America, along with a piece by French composer Maurice Duruflé.