The sights and sounds of Paris

parisIt is said that Paris is never more French than in the winter. Perhaps that is one of the reasons why a group of students and two Augsburg faculty spent part of their holiday break taking in the sights and sounds of Paris.

Actually, they were in the City of Light to experience the art and music. In this course, professors Merilee Klemp of the music department and Tara Sweeney of the art department worked together to develop a program that would help students understand and appreciate the intersections between the disciplines. Continue reading “The sights and sounds of Paris”

Advent Vespers keeps growing at 30 years

vespersIn 1980, Augsburg Choir director Larry Fleming’s vision for the first Advent Vespers was unlike any other. Among many holiday performances, Augsburg’s program would offer a spiritual experience—a service with both music and liturgy—and the focus would be on Advent, preparing and waiting for Christ’s presence.

From this first service, Advent Vespers grew to four services. Last year, more than 10,000 people attended, making this Augsburg’s largest event of the year.

This year, as Advent Vespers celebrates its 30th anniversary, a fifth service has been added, at 2 p.m. on Saturday, offering a daytime service to more easily accommodate larger groups of visitors. Continue reading “Advent Vespers keeps growing at 30 years”

Using art to make a difference

finearts_keystoneWhat can fine arts majors learn about themselves and their disciplines by volunteering in the community? Come to the Fine Arts Keystone final presentation on Monday to find out.

This Fall, senior students in film, music, theatre, and studio arts worked with Centro, a multi-social service agency that serves the Chicano and Latino communities. Students volunteered in the food bank and worked with children in the Siembra preschool. They blogged about their experiences throughout the term and created art respective of their disciplines as a way to reflect on their engagement with Centro. The class will present a collaborative art piece on Monday, Nov. 9 at 6 p.m. in the lower level of Old Main. Continue reading “Using art to make a difference”

Making a joyful noise for 15 years

masterworksFor 15 years the Augsburg College Masterworks Chorale has provided an opportunity for alumni, staff, faculty, friends of Augsburg, and current students to come together and make a joyful noise unto the Lord–and for thousands of Twin Cities choral music lovers. The Chorale will celebrate its fifteenth year by performing In Repentence, a piece commissioned by Sergey Khvoshchinsky at its fall concert on Sunday, Nov. 9 at 4 p.m. at Church of the Annunciation, 509 West 54th Street in South Minneapolis.

Peter Hendrickson, director of choral activities at Augsburg College, began the Masterworks Chorale mainly to perform orchestral music, which is very different from the repertoire of the other Augsburg choirs. The chorale consists of faculty, staff, alumni, community members, and current students. Many members are professional musicians, directors of church choirs, and teachers. “It is a great representation of people from Augsburg and their relationship with the community,” Hendrickson said. Continue reading “Making a joyful noise for 15 years”

Music as medicine

mus_therapyWhile internships in most majors give students a competitive edge, in music therapy they are required and rigorous. Every music therapy student must log 1,040 hours during an internship — six months at full time.

In April Christi Schmit began her internship at University Hospitals, Case Medical Campus, in Cleveland, Ohio. This 950-bed hospital gives her broad experience in varying situations to help develop her music therapy skills. She explains that as a therapeutic intervention, music therapy has been found effective in relaxation and pain management, and in treating chemical dependency and memory loss. Continue reading “Music as medicine”

Augsburg Choir tours Midwest and East Coast

choirtourIn the early morning on the day after May commencement, 60 Augsburg Choir members, their director, the tour manager, and an additional faculty representative will board two tour buses and set off on the 2008 choir tour. The group will present its home concert in Hoversten Chapel on Friday, May 2 at 8 p.m. followed by performances in eight different cities from Illinois to Virginia.

The year-end performances, according to director Peter Hendrickson ’76, DMA, are the requisite capstone of the singers’ learning experience. He said, “Music is a threefold process: the composer writes a piece, the choir learns the music, and the choir performs before an audience. This sequence is how music is brought to fruition, and it only occurs in performance. Thus, the end product of this academic discipline is where students learn the art of bringing music to life.” Continue reading “Augsburg Choir tours Midwest and East Coast”

Students play in WITNESS to Duke Ellington

witnessFor the past week, the Augsburg Jazz Ensemble has stretched themselves musically in an in-depth exploration of the music of Duke Ellington. In partnership with the VocalEssence choral ensemble, Augsburg once again participated in their WITNESS program, which celebrates the music of African-Americans.

Music Department Chair Bob Stacke recruited a “big band”-style orchestra that included high school, Augsburg, and professional players. For the “High School All Star Jazz Band,” he worked with music teachers in five Minneapolis public high schools and the Walker West Music Academy in Saint Paul to put together a band of talented players. They were joined by Jazz Ensemble members and professionals Larry Sims (trumpet) and David Wright III (saxophone/clarinet), who served as mentors to the students and played with them in the orchestra. The High School All Star Jazz Band was featured in “C Jam Blues.” Continue reading “Students play in WITNESS to Duke Ellington”

Music Scholarships Awarded

musicThe 2007-2008 Named Scholarship recipients have been announced. There are several different Named Scholarships of varying amounts, which are made possible by alumni and friends of Augsburg College.

Named Scholarships are for music students who show exceptional abilities in their area of study. Each year, recipients are carefully selected by the music faculty through a rigorous audition process.

“I am honored to be selected by Augsburg’s Music Faculty as the recipient of

Presser’s Foundation Scholarship,” says Evelyn Tsen, a music scholarship recipient. “If all goes well, I hope to repay the kindness that Augsburg has shown me in the future – like way, WAY in the future.”