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Image of the 2020 Advent Vespers theme artwork - Come Now, Breath of GodEach year for the past four decades, Augsburg University has hosted Advent Vespers to mark the Advent and Christmas seasons. This year’s celebration includes virtual devotions leading up to the virtual 41st Annual Advent Vespers at 7 p.m Friday, December 4, 2020.

Olivia House ’20, who earned a degree in graphic design at Augsburg, created the artwork for this year’s theme, “Come Now, Breath of God.”

Read our Q&A with Olivia about her perspective and work as an artist, the piece she created for Advent Vespers, and what she hopes people experience through this theme art. Continue reading “ADVENT VESPERS THEME ART BY OLIVIA HOUSE ’20”

Augsburg Music Exploration Evening

Image taken from within the pit choirMUSIC EXPLORATION Evening

The Music Exploration Evening is your opportunity to discover Music at Augsburg, meet our highly talented and caring instructors, and learn more about your individualized opportunities in the music program. If you are considering majoring in music or participating in an ensemble, it is vitally important that you attend this event to learn more about qualifying for the Fine Arts Scholarship. Should you be unable to attend the date below, contact the music office as soon as possible to assure that your application and FAS receives full consideration.

Register today for our first scheduled virtual Music Exploration Evening: Continue reading “Augsburg Music Exploration Evening”

Nancy Grundahl: F. Melius Christiansen Lifetime Achievement Award

Last November, the MN chapter of the American Choral Directors Association awarded Nancy Grundahl their highest honor – The F. Melius Christiansen Lifetime Achievement Award. To further honor and celebrate Nancy’s contributions to choral music in Minnesota, Sarah Abelsen ’06 worked with Nancy on a profile piece for the Fall issue of ACDA-MN’s online publication, The Star of the North. The article just went live a few days ago.
Congrats, again to Nancy!!

Mallory Alekna joins the Music Department

We are pleased to welcome Mallory Alekna to the Augsburg Music Department in a tenure-track position in Music, Human Development, and Learning. Mallory is completing her PhD at Arizona State University and holds an MM in music education from Indiana University – Bloomington. She has public school experience in instrumental, general, and choral music and has worked with programs providing arts learning in communities. Her PhD dissertation is on access, equity, and inclusion among music majors, and she previously completed a study on recruitment of persons of color into university music programs.

Augsburg/Twin Cities Global Harmony Choir

The Augsburg Music Department is thrilled to announce the inaugural season of the Augsburg/Twin Cities Global Harmony Choir, open to anyone on campus or out in the Metro area who loves to sing a cappella harmony. Teaching artists on this season’s roster hail from Corsica, Cuba, Iran, Nigeria, the Republic of Georgia, South Africa, Ukraine, and the United States. See the Augsburg/Twin Cities Global Harmony Choir page for more details.


“Introducing the Jazz Orchestra”

two people in discussion looking at a musical score

Dates: August 17 – 21, 2020

Hosts: Augsburg University (USA) and University of Costa Rica – Pacific campus (CR)

You are cordially invited to participate in a virtual seminar in which the concept of the “Jazz Orchestra” as a professional ensemble will be presented. In this format, the orchestra will encounter [confront… deal with…] the idiomatic language of North American jazz and the traditional jazz ensemble will rise [accede] to another level of musical expression. Don’t miss out! Continue reading “INTERNATIONAL JAZZ ARRANGING SEMINAR”



Dates: July 30 to August 1, 2020

Hosts: Augsburg University (USA) and University of Costa Rica – Pacific campus (CR)


conductorsSymposium on the art of leadership and the performance of the well-trained musician as orchestra director. The invited maestros from seven countries will offer workshops (talks) on this theme and the ways in which it manifests in the performance of their work as musical directors.



Image of email header titled Occasional Updates from the Music Department

Volume III, No. 2 – April 2020

To our Augsburg Music community,

Welcome, once again, to our Occasional Updates for Augsburg University Music! Despite the frequent priority of solo work as a hallmark of musical achievement, most of us experience music-making as a social event. Meaningful music learning and experience derive from the shared act of preparing and executing performances.

Thus, the coronavirus has had an enormous impact on the “normal” work of the Department of Music and required us to think in creative ways about keeping our students engaged in active learning while practicing social distance and isolation. The typical final weeks of the semester, marked with concerts and recitals, preparation for commencement, juries, final exams, grading, and other rituals that mark academic transitions, have given way to exploring how today’s technology can be leveraged to support continuation of student learning. What we have learned, of course, is that technology has two dimensions. On the one hand, it provides avenues of staying in touch from our places of “distance” that can help us feel connected; on the other, it is a weak substitute for the necessity of face to face, real-time, feelingful interaction with others.