Glenn Korff School of Music Blog
Glenn Korff School of Music Blog
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.
I am returning at the end of June to work for two-to-three weeks at the Oregon Bach Festival in Eugene, Oregon as I have for many summers — Singing with choir [Verdi Requiem, etc] and working with young singers as faculty for the Youth Choral Academy; also teaching sessions for Teachers' Workshop that runs concurrently with the Youth Choral Academy and the Festival. Also, a possible trip to the UK in late July to visit friends and colleagues, and also teach several workshops for teachers/singers while in the area. I've been invited to serve as guest clinician for the summer retreat of the Crystal Children's' Choirs from the San Francisco Area at the beginning of August and invited to establish a new set of festival/workshops involving both conducting choirs and teaching two choral directing workshops on the islands of Chios and Mytilene, Greece, in mid August.
I was featured in multiple performances with members of the Montecristo Ensemble in Israel and Bulgaria from April 23 to May 21, 2014.
Due to the tragic death of her husband earlier this year, our cellist was unable to join us for our scheduled performances in Israel. On relatively short notice, therefore, it was decided that violinist Mihai Craioveanu and I would put together a varied program of works for solo piano, solo violin, and violin/piano duo for the Israeli portion of our tour. Our first performance in Israel was at the Or Yehuda Conservatory, and it attracted an enthusiastic audience of students, faculty, and patrons from the surrounding area. Prior to the performance we had the opportunity to meet with the Director of the Conservatory (Hana Ajiashvili), who is also an internationally acclaimed composer. Our discussions culminated in plans to collaborate with her in the very near future. Also while at Or Yehuda, I gave a masterclass for talented young piano students from the conservatory, including a sixteen year old girl who currently studies with renowned Israeli pianist and pedagogue Asaf Zohar. The second performance in Israel was at the prestigious Felicja Blumental Centre, located in the heart of Tel Aviv. It was enthusiastically received by an audience that included Professor Zohar, whose overwhelmingly positive comments following my performance of Beethoven’s “Appassionata” Sonata were extremely gratifying to me. The strong connection that I established with Professor Zohar during this trip undoubtedly will lead to further teaching and performing opportunities for me in Israel
All four members of the Montecristo Ensemble were able to be present for both performances in Bulgaria. Our first appearance there was the opening concert for the International Chamber Music Festival in Kyustendil, with a packed house in the auditorium of the Bratstvo Cultural Center. Our second performance was in Sofia at Philip Koutev Hall at the Union of Bulgarian Composers. This performance was attended by a number of prominent Bulgarian musicians including Vladislav Grigorov (horn), Geoffrey Deane (cello), Daniela Dikova (piano), and Josef Rodionov (violin). Professor Rodionov serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the Plovdiv International Chamber Music Festival, and following our performance he invited the Montecristo Ensemble to appear at the prestigious festival next summer.
• Collaborated with Zhang, Xiaolu, Director of Jazz Studies and Professor of Saxophone at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music to premiere a new composition for jazz orchestra titled EAST RHYTHM
• Composed a new set of All-State Jazz Ensemble Audition Etudes commissioned by NMEA
• Created original music and performing with the UNL Faculty Jazz Ensemble on their Summer European Tour. Venues include the Montreux and Vienne Jazz Festivals
• Commissioned to write a new arrangement of SATURDAY NIGHT IN THE COSMOS by the Virginia Tech University Jazz Studies program. The piece is part of a tribute to the late pianist-composer Don Pullen.
• Commissioned to write a new arrangement of composer Ellen Seeling's CHEVERE for jazz orchestra to be featured on an upcoming recording by the Montclair Women's Big Band (http://montclairwomensbigband.com/)
• Composing and arranging new music for the "New" UNL Jazz Orchestra!
I will present at the 2014 World Conference of the International Society for Music Education in Porto Alegre, Brazil. ISME is the music-education arm of the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and this conference occurs biennially. Recent conferences have taken place in Greece, China, Italy, and the Canary Islands.
Title -- "Balancing Tradition and Change: Ethical Leadership in 21st Century Schools of Music"
Presenter — John W. Richmond, Ph.D., Professor & Director of UNL's Glenn Korff School of Music
Abstract -- Confronted with tectonic shifts in music culture and music consumption worldwide, tertiary music faculties and their administrators are placed now at a challenging and sometimes dangerous confluence of pressures in support either of "tradition" (the aggressive reaffirmation of commitment to the "common practice" of western European art music of the 17th-20th centuries) or "change" (a turn away from these art music practices and toward current commercial/popular/vernacular/world-music practices and pedagogies). While it is possible to identify pristine exemplars on both extremes of these musical polarities, such a forced choice seems likely to be artificially binary. In fact, a more promising alternative for most tertiary music faculties likely will be a commitment to tradition AND change – to an acknowledgement of the ethical obligation of universities and conservatories concurrently and competently to understand and honor beloved musics of the past while taking up the equally important and often very hard work of shaping a vigorous, lasting, innovative musical future for our culture and our time. Twenty years ago in Tampa, FL, USA, the International Society for Music Education organized its 1994 biennial world conference under the conference theme of “Musical Connections: Tradition and Change.” While the overarching focus of that conference sought to create linkages and dialogues among the world’s divergent music practices and pedagogies, the pressures of that time were vastly different and frankly less threatening in hindsight than those that appear to be on the horizons of university music programs now, especially those rooted in the “classical” music of the west. This paper unpacks the recent history of this tectonic shift, it documents the size of this shift in terms of music production/consumption and education economics, and finally advances a renewed and updated call for “tradition AND change” – one that posits a role for university music programs as engines of music preservation, innovation, cultural cross-pollination, and affirmation. The ethics orientation of this narrative is rooted in what modern education ethicists call “rule utilitarianism” or the blending of most compelling features of deontological and teleological perspectives in choosing the right course of action. Rule utilitarianism is a call to ethical discourse.
I am performing as tenor tubist with the Omaha Symphony on Richard Strauss’ work Ein Heldenleben” on June 6-7. The concerts are at the Holland Center in Omaha.
I will be presenting five sessions at the World Conference of the International Society for Music Education (ISME) this July in Brazil. The first will be a policy paper with Daniel Hellman of Missouri State University about social justice commitment levels of music education students. This presentation will take place at the pre-conference policy seminar in Natal, Brazil before travelling to the main conference in Porto Alegre. In Porto Alegre, I’m chairing and presenting in a symposium on the use of informal and vernacular music making experiences in music teacher education including Frank Heuser (UCLA), Clint Randles (South Florida), and Sharon Davis (Loudon County Schools, Virginia). I’m also presenting in a symposium on social justice issues in music education with Daniel Hellman (Missouri State), Connie McKoy & Mark Dillon (North Carolina Greensboro), and Cindy Wagoner (East Carolina). Fourth and fifth, I’ll be presenting paper sessions on the use of technology in elementary-level band programs, and the use of alternative rehearsal strategies in secondary band programs. The latter two are collaborations with UNL music education Ph.D. student Danni Gilbert. Read the abstracts...
I’ve also been providing final edits for an in press book chapter on social justice in music teaching to appear in the next volume of Advances in Music Education Research.
Finally, I’ll be teaching the Woodwind Pedagogy and Literature course as part our on-campus master in music education program in June. I’ve also been instructing an assessment course online for Kent State University’s (Ohio) masters in music education degree.
I plan on spending time here in Lincoln biking/running and refueling for the next school year. I'll probably take in a few of the Jazz in June events. I will be making a trip to Kentucky to visit family and then will spend a week on the beach either on Hilton Head Island, SC or Nag's Head, NC. Professionally, I will be serving as clinician for the Cornhusker High School Marching Band Camp and completing visual design for high school bands. Of course, I will be tweeting about all of it. :) @DougBush2
I'll be headed up to Ithaca College (Ithaca, New York) June 29-July 1 to present a clinic at the Ithaca Conference on Instrumental Music Education: http://www.ithaca.edu/music/cbdna/
Ensembleship for the 21st Century Artist-Teacher
Ensembleship is the ability of musicians to function effectively (i.e. creatively and artistically) in groups. For more than a century, wind band conductors have pursued that goal with a relentless focus on individual preparation and connection through convergent thinking. However, it is only since the turn of the 21st century that scholars and scientists have focused their attention in earnest on the psychological and neurological underpinnings of creativity, including the crucial element of divergence. The scientific predisposition against the study of creativity has been mirrored in the development of the American system of music education. As a result, this bias has been firmly embedded in the rehearsal practice of conductor/teachers for generations.
This session will connect contemporary scientific thought to traditional rehearsal practice to build a more effective and ultimately artistic method of developing ensembleship, including rehearsal activities and techniques based on interactive and improvisatory modes of thought common among actors. Material to develop character, define point of view, and enable interaction (as opposed to simple presentation which tends to be the ensemble musician’s default) will be woven into the flow to tip the balance from philosophical to practical. The emphasis for the session will be on how to achieve the shift in values and behaviors that supports ensembleship.
In May, Kevin Hanrahan performed the Dvorak Stabat Mater at the Musikverein in Vienna, Austria with the University of Arizona Concert Choir, the Tuscon Symphony Orchestra Chorus and the Plovdiv Philharmonic Orchestra, and at the Rudolfinum in Prague, Czech Republic with the City of Prague Orchestra. In July Dr. Hanrahan will travel to Porto Alegre, Brazil and perform a recital of repertoire for the developing voice along with Dr. Jamie Reimer at the International Society of Music Education World Conference.
Diane Barger, Hixson-Lied Professor of Clarinet, is currently preparing for her appearance as featured guest artist for the 37th Oklahoma Clarinet Symposium in Norman, OK (http://ouclarinetsymposium.ou.edu/). The symposium is June 12-14th on the campus of the University of Oklahoma in Norman. Barger's recital features music by Reinecke, Miluccio, and Delano and is scheduled on Friday, June 13th at 4pm in the Paul F. Sharp Concert Hall in the Catlett Music Center. UNL graduate students Jennifer Reeves (MM 2014; new DMA student and GTA, Fall '14) and Lucas Willsie (MM student, GTA) will be attending the symposium with Barger, and Jennifer Reeves is scheduled to perform in one of the symposium master classes. July 30-August 2, Barger will be attending the International Clarinet Association's annual ClarinetFest® (http://www.clarinet.org/clarinetFest2014/), which will take place in Baton Rouge, LA on the campus of Louisiana State University. Reeves, Willsie and Shiana Montanari (MM) will also be attending. Following a peer-reviewed invitation process last fall, Barger accepted the invitation to present two lectures at ClarinetFest® this summer. Her first presentation will occur on Thursday, July 31 at 11am in the Union Theater Room. The lecture is titled, "So You Want to Host an ICA ClarinetFest®…", is an hour in length, and will describe the process of creating the initial site proposal for the ICA Board of Directors and discuss the intricacies of organizing, planning, and managing all aspects of an ICA ClarinetFest®. (As a reminder, Barger served as Artistic Director and Host of the highly successful 2012 ICA ClarinetFest® here in Lincoln on the UNL campus!) The 2nd lecture presentation is shared with co-collaborater Dr. Denise Gainey (from the University of Alabama at Birmingham) and is a 30-minute presentation scheduled for Saturday, August 1 at 4pm in the Union Theater Room. The lecture is titled "Collaborative Teaching and Learning in the Studio" and discusses the way social networking (specifically Facebook) was used during the last academic year as an online, collaborative educational tool between two university clarinet studios. By sharing weekly video clips of each student's lesson, students and teachers were given a unique opportunity for further growth and learning throughout the year. The presentation will describe the conception of the teaching tool and note the benefits the students and teachers gained from the experience. Finally, during ClarinetFest®, Barger will also serve as the E-flat clarinetist in the American Clarinet Professors Choir which will close the conference with a final concert on Sunday, August 2 in the Shaver Theater at 3pm.