The halls of the Westbrook Music Building are busy with activity, but our faculty, staff, alumni and students are out in the world doing amazing things too! Read about all of their activities here.

Tom Larson and Susumu Watanabe


Faculty member Tom Larson and Graduate Student Susumu Watanabe recently returned from the TLG/TBAO Tour 2019.

June 11: Lecture and master class at National Dong Hwa University, Hualien, Taiwan
June 14: Lecture and master class at Tokai University, Hiratsuka-shi, Kanagawa, Japan
June 19: Tom Larson Group Performance at Into The Blue, Machida-shi, Tokyo 
June 20: Tom Larson Group Recording Session at Studio Dede, Toshima-ku, Tokyo 
June 21: Tokyo Brass Art Orchestra Concert I at Wako University Potpourri Hall, Machida-shi, Tokyo 
June 22: Tokyo Brass Art Orchestra Concert II at Roppongi CLAPS, Minato-Ku, Tokyo 
June 23: Tokyo Brass Art Orchestra Concert III at Studio Wuu, Kashiwa-shi, Chiba

National Association of the Teachers of Singing's National Student Auditions


Five Glenn Korff School of Music-affiliated students were named one of the top 14 voices in the nation in their age and level of training category in the National Association of the Teachers of Singing's National Student Auditions. The live national competition will host finals at St. Olaf College in Minnesota on June 27 & 28th.

Korff School-affiliated students:

Ryan Wortmann, student of Jamie Reimer

Jacob Thomas, student of Alisa Belflower

alum–Kathleen Johnson, student of Kate Butler

alum–Krista Lawrence, student of Alisa Belflower

Trey Meyer, student of Alisa Belflower

Greg Simon


With the generous support of a grant from NU’s Office of Global Strategies, I was able to spend two weeks in Chile researching protest music by Chilean artists of the 1960s and 70s, wildly influential to this day on musicians around the globe. I’ll use this research to develop lessons and teaching materials for a new course I’ll be teaching in Spring 2021, “Music and Protest in Latin America.”

I began my trip in Valparaíso, on the central coast. During my time their, I studied the city’s vibrant tradition of street art; examined the work of Lukas, an influential Chilean political writer and cartoonist; and spoke with Chilean singer and poet Claudio Lazcano about “cueca,” the Chilean folk music tradition that inspired many singers and songwriters of the 60s and 70s.

In Santiago, Chile’s largest city and home to the most significant protest music movement, I visited the Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos (Museum of Remembrance and Human Rights) to learn more about Chile’s tumultuous political history. I spent two days in the museum, examining artifacts and visiting the archives; my conversations with the Museum’s incredible team of archivists are ongoing. I also spent time in the Chilean National Library (Biblioteca Nacional), reading and examining their music collection. A highlight of my time in Santiago was a two-hour conversation with Rodrigo Torres Alvarado, Professor of Music and Music History at the University of Chile. Prof. Torres and I discussed Chile’s musical past and the way its cultural landscape has shifted, as well as how present-day Chileans perceive the country’s protest tradition.

My free time in Santiago was spent visiting my Chilean family, browsing bookstores for new reading and Chilean poetry, and enjoying incredible wine, seafood, and empanadas.

Upcoming China Travel


The Glenn Korff School of Music is pleased to announce that a delegation of faculty and students will be traveling to China, June 10-20, 2019.  Lead by Dr. Paul Haar, Associate Professor of Saxophone, Jazz Studies, this octet will perform and teach at the Shenyang Conservatory of Music, Shenyang, Liaoning Province, Beijing Contemporary Music Academy, Beijing, Capital and the Sichuan Conservatory of Music, Chengdu, Sichuan Province.  

The ensemble consists of Dr. Paul Haar-Saxophone, Runkun Li (DMA Jazz Studies)-Saxophone, Christopher Leach (DMA Jazz Studies)-Trombone, Christian Chesanek (DMA Jazz Studies)-Bass, Malachi Million (DMA Jazz Studies)-Guitar, Seth Fromal (DMA Jazz Studies)-Piano, Kyle Granville (DMA Jazz Studies)-Trumpet, and Andrew Wray (Junior BME)-Drums

South Korea Travel


Interdisciplinary and globally impactful collaborations can change mindsets, which brings understanding and creativity to audiences throughout the world. What started as a partnership with University of Nebraska-Lincoln Glenn Korff School of Music faculty members Karen Becker (cello) and Hye-Won Hwang (dance) was taken to another level as they embarked with a few GKSOM students to South Korea in May.
 
The travel was made available through a new grant titled, “Student Interdisciplinary Creative Activity Grant” initiated in the Fall of 2018 by Glenn Korff School of Music Director Sergio Ruiz. The grant is offered to GKSOM students to present interdisciplinary work at international institutions in order to create relationships with music institutions at the international level, global visibility for GKSOM and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

William Shomos


William Shomos will be staging a production of Aaron Copland’s THE TENDER LAND for the Muddy River Opera Company in June.

Cooper Creal


Cooper Creal (BM, Junior) will be performing the principal role of Pedrito in the children’s opera MONKEY SEE, MONKEY DO produced in June and July with Opera in the Ozarks in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. He will also be singing in the chorus of the festival’s productions of Mozart’s ABDUCTION FROM THE SERAGLIO and Puccini’s LA BOHÈME.

Jared Hiscock


Jared Hiscock (DMA) will be performing the role of Guglielmo in Mozart’s COSI FAN TUTTE with Opera Orvieto in June, where he won a full scholarship and travel funding to participate. Jared will then go on to perform the role of the Marquis de la Force in Poulenc’s DIALOGUES OF THE CARMELITES with Saltworks Opera. In August, Jared begins his tenure as a Holland Community Fellow with Opera Omaha, a full-time engagement 2019-2021.

Kalvin Schreiner


Congratulations to Kalvin Schreiner! He has won the 2019 John Shildneck Solo Competition with the Lincoln Municipal Band. He wins a cash prize and will perform this summer with the Lincoln Municipal Band at the Shildneck Bandshell in Antelope Park. He is the ninth trombonist from the studio to win the competition joining Liam Hughes, William White, Claire Knaus, Luke Thallas, Joe Mumm, Craig Mathis, Andrew Binkard and Bryant Scott.

Student Updates


We asked our students to update us as this semester comes to a close. We will share their thoughts as they come in.

Claire Boes
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: Throwing Dr. Gilbert a surprise baby shower. Our MUED class made snacks and decorated the room and everything.
Summer plans: Going back home to work and save some money up.
Cal Cross
Graduating: Bachelor's of Music Education
I will be teaching 9-12 Vocal Music at Elkhorn South High School in Omaha.
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: 
Traveling to Omaha with University Singers to sing music from Final Fantasy with the Omaha Symphony
Mee-Hwa Roche
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: I’ve really enjoyed the convocations with guest artists and getting to hear about the creative process as a professional. I’ve also appreciated the supportive environment amongst the students and faculty.
Accomplishment: Made the fall Dean’s List.
Seth Burk
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: 
Playing in the Westbrook Saxophone quartet
Summer plans: 
Work, taking lessons with Dr. Haar
Christian Johnson
Graduating: Master of Music: Piano
I will be attending UNL to complete my D.M.A. in Piano
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: 
There was something that became very special to me getting up early, going to History of Opera with Dr. Starr at 8:30am, and all of us are sipping on coffee talking about all things opera. Anytime I get up early now while enjoying coffee, I think back to that morning class. Yes, it was THAT great!
Summer plans: 
I will be in Shanghai, China for the entire duration, spending time with my fiancée's family and practicing!!
Ellie Stone
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: My favorite memory from this year as a Glenn Korff School of Music student has been Bass Day. It's so fun to meet other bassists, young and old. It's great to just jam with a bunch of other people who appreciate your instrument as much as you do.
Summer plans: 
I am going home for the summer to work, relax, and practice.
Liping Xia
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: 
Great faculty.
Summer plans: 
Wedding (she is getting married). Attend a festival in Europe.
Uriah Mata
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: The first day on campus! I remember feeling excited, curious, and optimistic about how much I’m going to grow here as an adult and as a musician!
Summer plans: Go back to my hometown, work a full time job, practice Trombone, tour Nebraska with the 43rd Army Band, travel to Saint-Lo France to participate in the Battle of St. Lo Commemoration as an honor guard member, take Trombone lessons from professors around Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska, give Trombone, Music Theory, and Aural Skills lessons all across Scotts Bluff County and relax hopefully!
Lucy Collins
Summer plans: 
I will be attending the Brevard Music Center Institute!
Ruben D Gomez
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: 
The amount of academic support received from the faculty.
Summer plans: I will be in Colombia and Perú guest-conducting a couple of bands and an orchestra. Also,​ I will teach a couple of conducting workshops in these two countries.
Accomplishments and Awards in 2018-19: National Student Composer Competition sponsored by the MetWinds (Boston); F. Pace Woods Scholarship
Patrick Knowles
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: Phi Mu Alpha.
Summer plans: 
Working, traveling to Indiana and Alaska.
Sasha Smoot
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: Being a part of such a wonderful MUED class. They have been so great to me this year, since I was new at the start of this school year.
Summer plans: I will be taking a few summer courses, working as a Westbrook building monitor, and getting my level 1 World Drumming Certification.
Clayton Spray
Summer plans: 
I will have a sales intern position at Sandhills Global.
Accomplishments: I received President’s List
Chauncey Kleveland
Graduating: Bachelor's of Music Education
I have accepted a position as the K-12 Music Teacher at Parkview Christian School in Lincoln, Nebraska.
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: 
I will always cherish the friendships and memories made as a student of the school of music.
Clara Smith
Favorite memory as a GKSOM Student: 
Decorating Dr. Bailey's office for his birthday
Summer plans: 
Working, giving flute lessons, going on vacation, and running a marathon
Claire Lux
Graduating: 
I will be graduating with a Bachelor's degree in Music Education
Next year I will be teaching general music at Mary Our Queen Catholic School in Omaha, Nebraska.
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: My favorite thing about the Glenn Korff School of Music is the people. I have made so many wonderful friends here that I will have for the rest of my life.
Matthew Armstrong
Graduating: DMA in Choral Conducting
2019/2020 will be my fourth year as Director of Choral Activities at Wayne State College. I will present at NCDA and ICDA in the summer of 2019. I will conduct the Iowa Ambassadors of Music on a tour of Europe in the summer of 2020. My future scholarly plans include submitting parts of my doctoral document to journals for publication and composing/arranging choral music with more vigor.
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: 
I worked incredibly hard in graduate diction class to improve my skills and improve areas of weakness, particularly French. My small class prepared for our French exam so diligently that we surprised Professor Kate Butler with our test scores. As a result, the day she returned the exams she provided a lovely buffet of French pastries and coffee on a beautifully decorated table. It was such a thoughtful gesture and wonderful celebration of hard work and success.
Conner Viets
Summer plans: CHannel2 Percussion Duo will perform at the National Conference on Percussion Pedagogy (NCPP) in Lubbock, TX; Participant in the Heartland Marimba Ensemble 2019 Summer Tour with performances in Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Michigan between June 5-22.
Accomplishments: 3/1/19––CHannel2 Percussion Duo received first place in the duet category at the Mid-Missouri Percussive Arts Trophy; 3/9/19––CHannel2 Percussion Duo performed at the TEDxUMKC Conference held at the National WWI Museum in Kansas City, MO; 4/11/19––CHannel2 Percussion Duo gave the world premiere of "Pluviality" by Kyle Rieger at the Society of Composers, Inc. Region VI Conference in Commerce, TX.
Asael Arévalo González
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: My favorite memory is learning color guard outside in Instrumental Music Methods with Georgina the Turkey!
Summer plans: I will be studying abroad in Vienna, Austria. My program is a 5 week Summer Music History and Performance course through IES.
Awards/Accomplishments: I received the UNL MAPS scholarship, an IES scholarship, and a grant from the GKSOM (among other scholarships) to fund my travel over the summer! I also served as an undergraduate representative for the UNL Faculty Bassoon Search Committee this last semester. A fun opportunity was being apart of Steel 2, a new steel drum ensemble for non-music majors and non-percussion majors!
Jacob Wheeler
Graduating: 
I'm graduating with a Bachelors of Music Education
I am employed with Omaha Public Schools as an itinerant strings teacher
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: 
Building friendships that will last for the rest of my life.
Drew Firkins
Graduating: Bachelor of Music Education
I'll be the vocal music teacher at Russell Middle School in Millard Public Schools next year! I'll be directing the 6-8 choirs, designing and teaching a music technology course, directing two show choirs, a musical, and an a cappella group.
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: Pretty much all of Theory III with Dr. Kleppinger, and when Snarky Puppy came to convocation! Also getting to be a part of the Cornhusker Marching Band, because it was so different than anything I've done in my music career up to this point.
Accomplishments: I just received a nomination for "Best Arranger" for the 2019 FAME Aspire Awards, an awards series that recognizes show choir professionals throughout the country each year.
Sarah Jo Aymond
Graduating: 
Master of Music in Wind Band Conducting
In July,  I will begin working at Roosevelt High School in Sioux Falls, SD. As one of their two band directors, I will be responsible for the program’s four concert bands, four jazz bands, and their nationally acclaimed marching band.
Favorite memory as a GKSOM student: Working with the Cornhusker Marching Band and the Big Red Express Pep Bands will forever hold a special place in my heart. Listening to the CMB play “Cali Chords” as they warmed up each morning in Memorial Stadium while most of the student body was still asleep and the sun was just beginning to rise is a particular feeling that I will never forget.

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