Spring 2014 Newsletter
One of the most remarkable things about the power of music is the way in which it brings us together. This is the perfect time for us to acknowledge the wonderful ways in which our faculty, students, and alumni have woven the fabric of music into their lives and the lives of those they touch. In places and ways we cannot even imagine, young spirits are awakening to the richness of "the musical experience" and are inspired by your performances, your teaching, and your creative minds, and through their own musical experiences, young people learn to become part of something much bigger than themselves. The work you do to elevate the art of music is noble and we take pride in what you have done! You are, and will always be, our friends through music. That is the power of music!
--Jerry L. Daniels
The NAfME Collegiate chapter provides learning opportunities through regular meetings and guest speakers. In addition, the chapter provides outreach and service to local schools, students, and music teachers. Examples include- an afternoon with the Charleston Teen Reach program for at-risk youth where students came to Doudna for a tour, a meeting with NAfME chapter members, and an instrument petting zoo. NAfME chapter members volunteered to help with the Cumberland music department spring spaghetti supper and concert fundraiser.
Last spring the EIU chapter completed its two-year term as
state host. Duties included hosting a booth at the 2012 and 2013 IMEC Conference in Peoria, and hosting the state collegiate conference at EIU.
Amanda Long completed her music department undergraduate honors thesis project and presented it at NCUR (National Council on Undergraduate Research). She was awarded the Booth Library Excellence in Student Research and Creativity Award in the spring of 2013.
The EIU CrossBones auditioned and were invited to perform at the 2013 International Trombone Festival in Columbus, GA. They will travel to GA to perform June 25th- 30th, 2013. The EIU CrossBones consist of Jaime Escatel, Molly Elvert, Jamie Minuskin, Aaron Eckert, Royce Harrington, Mark Rheaume, Bill Mitchell and Jemmie Robertson. The International Trombone Association officially approved the Eastern Trombone Chapter as an affiliate chapter in summer 2013. In fall 2013 board members were elected and they are: Michael Pond-Jones, President-Elect; Jaime Escatel, Treasurer: and Jennette Grau, Secretary.
On Saturday, December 7th the EIU Bands welcomed 145 high school students from around the state to the EIU High School Honor Band Festival. This was the largest and most talented group yet! The First Annual EIU High School Concert Band Festival took place on the EIU Campus Saturday, February 22, 2014. The festival was a smashing success and included the bands from Paris High School, Bethalto Community High School, Normal West High School, and Mahomet-Seymour High School. On Friday, March 28th at 7:30pm in Dvorak Concert Hall on the EIU Campus, the Wind Symphony will headline the "EIU Wind Symphony and Faculty Showcase" concert. In addition to the Wind Symphony, the EIU Faculty Brass Quintet, Woodwind Dectet, and other faculty members will be featured on the concert. The EIU Band Department will provide free tickets to all high school band students, directors, and their families ho would like to make a trip to Charleston for the concert. Please contact Alicia Neal for ticket information: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Music Department Facebook page continues to grow modestly and has added a couple hundred new followers who have "liked" the page in the past few months. You can find us at:https://www.facebook.com/EIUDepartmentofMusic
On Twitter, you can follow us at: https://twitter.com/EIUMusic
New Faculty Members in 2013–14
Jonathan Bowman, Piano–began piano studies at the age of 8. He and his siblings played with such enthusiasm that they often broke strings on their living room piano. Still noted for his energetic and incisive style, Dr. Bowman has performed around the United States as well as Germany, Italy, and Japan (and, perhaps most importantly, Disney World). His areas of academic emphasis include Baroque performance practice, the church music of Franz Liszt, and the piano music of Italy's "generazione dell'ottanta". As a high school student Dr. Bowman won the inaugural Eastman International Young Artist Piano Competition. Twelve years later, while pursuing his DMA at Eastman, he was delighted to see the other side of the competition in the role of assistant artistic director. Other favorite musical memories include twice winning the Gina Bachauer International Piano Teams Competition and performing as a finalist at the 2005 national MTNA competition. Dr. Bowman's favorite way to make music is in ensembles. He has been heard on the radio presenting new music for two pianos, performed Mozart's Concerto No. 21 with the Southwest Symphony, and has played with the Eastman Composers' Sinfonietta, the Eastman Chorale, and the Brigham Young University Men's Chorus. He spent the summer of 2013 as an artist-in residence with the Silver Bay String Quartet. Dr. Bowman is indebted to his teachers: Craig Evans of Santaquin, Utah; Paul Pollei and Scott Holden at Brigham Young University; William Grant Nabore at the Argerich Academy on Lake Como; and Douglas Humpherys at Eastman. He is also indebted to his students who continue to teach him so much about music and life. Dr. Bowman lives in Charleston with his wife and three children.
Kathryn Fenton, Music History–comes from London, Ontario, Canada. She obtained her undergraduate degree in Music History from McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, where she also studied violin and music theory. Fenton completed her master's degree from the University of Notre Dame (South Bend, Indiana) and her doctorate from the University of Western Ontario (London, Ontario, Canada). She has taught courses in both music history and rhetoric, and this rich teaching experience has made her passionate about including Writing Across the Curriculum pedagogical approaches in her courses here at Eastern. Her dissertation explored the early American reception of Puccini's La fanciulla del West (1910). Her current research extends issues of reception, nationalism, cosmopolitanism, American musical identity formation, and early twentieth-century transatlantic cultural relations, as set forth in her dissertation. She has presented her work at local, national, and international conferences in music, literature, and history and her most recent publications include articles for the Cambridge Verdi Encyclopedia (2013). In her spare time, you can find her training for long-distance road races, playing violin in the Eastern Symphony Orchestra and the bi-weekly Irish Fiddle Circle (as often as she can), reading Canadian literature or mystery/spy novels, trying out new recipes, and watching films.
Jeff Zahos, Music Technology and Recording–is an artist passionately dedicated to exploring the confluence of music, sound and dance. Recently, he joined the music faculty at Eastern Illinois University, where he teaches music technology and graduate seminar courses and serves as head of recording. Since 2010, Mr. Zahos has been very active as an artist in dance - as musician, sound designer, composer, and dancer - working with Sara Hook, Tamin Totzke, Grant Bowen, Kathleen Kelly, John Toenjes, Kirstie Simson and others. He has been a staff dance musician at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and at several American College Dance Festival Association regional conferences. As an audio engineer, he has engineered over a dozen commercial releases, including those by virtuoso pianist Ian Hobson, The Atlantic Harp Duo, mezzo-soprano Elizabeth Buckley, and world-renown djembe master Bolokada Conde. In the summertime, he is the recording engineer for the National Repertory Orchestra in Breckenridge, CO. Jeff has performed as a percussionist, timpanist and drum set player with the Illinois, Peoria and Champaign-Urbana symphonies, jazz and rock bands, Balinese gamelans, and West African drumming ensembles and in musical theatre. Currently, his creative research focuses on the corporeality of sound, live performance as a sound design practice, and movement as a genesis of sound. He holds a Master of Fine Arts in Sound Design and Technology and a Bachelor of Arts in Music History from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Andrew Cheetham (trumpet and jazz studies) performed as part of the jazz trumpet quartet "The Four Other Brothers" at the 2014 Illinois Music Education Conference. The group, a consortium of Illinois jazz trumpet players and college professors, also recently released their first album, entitled "With Respect to our Fathers."
Anna Cromwell (Violin and Viola) is giving string pedagogy presentations at the Music Teachers National Association Conference, the American String Teachers Association National Conference, and the Illinois Music Educators State Conference in the spring of 2014. She will be a Faculty Artist at the Tennessee Valley Music Festival in Huntsville, Alabama again this summer.
Stefan Eckert (Music Theory) published an Edition of Joseph Riepel's Violin Concertos (both in full score and as piano reductions) as part of the Recent Researches in the Music of the Classical Era Series of A-R Editions, Inc. in 2013.
Brad Decker (Music Theory and Composition) performed "basso#" for double bass and computer at the International Computer Music Association National Conference, Perth, Western Australia, August 15, 2013 and "basso images" for double bass, computer, in collaboration with video artist Zlatko Cosic at Illinois Wesleyan University, on Feb. 22, 2014
Rebecca Johnson (Flute) In 2013, Rebecca played a recital, concerto, and taught master classes at the Convención Internacionál de las Flautistas in Quito, Ecuador, which she has been doing since 2009. She will return this summer. Rebecca was an invited performer at the National Flute Association's convention in New Orleans, LA. Her recital tour included guest appearances at Indiana State University and the University of Illinois. She was also a guest soloist for the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology's string ensemble, served as a substitute for the Louisville Orchestra, and played with a variety of regional ensembles throughout the year. In 2014, Rebecca was a Concerto soloist with the ESO in February. She also hosted a flute festival at EIU in February and plans to return to Ecuador this summer.
Paul Johnston (Jazz Studies and Jazz Piano) presented a session entitled "Interpreting the Great American Songbook" with Tom Birkner at the 2014 Illinois Music Educators Conference in Peoria, Illinois. He spent February writing music in residence at the Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts in Wyoming. His next book, a collection of solo piano arrangements, will be released by Alfred Music this spring.
Seth Killen (Voice and Musical Theater/Opera) will be giving master classes along with Jonathan Bowman at Gardner-Webb University in Boiling Springs, and will also give a recital of Schumann's Dichterliebe, Copland's Old American Songs, Gerald Finzi's O Fair to See, and a few songs by Rachmaninoff. Later in the month, March 21st, Seth will team together with Magie Smith, Rebecca Johnson, Elizabeth Sulluvian, and Jonathan Bowman to present a recital of chamber music at Millikin University. Seth and Jonathan will be giving master classes to the vocalists and pianists, respectively.
Danelle Larson (Instrumental Music Education) enjoys conducting research on innovative pedagogies, curriculum, and student-centered learning in ensemble classes. She has recently presented research and clinics at the Illinois Music Educators Conference, The Iowa Music Educators Conference, The Society for Music Teacher Education, The Instrumental Music Teacher Educators Symposium, and has been an invited guest speaker at the University of Illinois, Western Illinois University, and Florida International University. She has work accepted for upcoming presentations at the NAfME (National Association for Music Education) Research Conference in April, and in June will co-present at the Giving Voice To Democracy in Music Education Conference to be held in New Jersey.
Jemmie Robertson (Trombone and Euphonium) was invited to present, perform, conduct, and adjudicate at the 2013 Big Twelve Trombone Workshop held at Texas Tech University in Lubbock Texas in January 2013. He presented a clinic on the music of Hindemith, performed on the artist solo recital, conducted a reading session with the participant trombone choir, and adjudicated the finals of the Bass Trombone Solo Competition. Dr. Robertson presented a clinic on chamber music at the January 2013 IMEC clinic in collaboration with fellow EIU Music Faculty Magie Smith, Danelle Larson, and Anna Cromwell. Dr. Robertson returned as principal trombone of the Santo Domingo Festival in March 2013 in the Dominican Republic, and has been invited to return again in 2015 for the next biennial festival. Dr. Robertson received Redden Grant Funding to bring internationally renowned soloist and educator Demondrae to the EIU campus as guest artist for the 5th annual Low Brass Day in November 2013. Dr. Robertson will return as a trombonist with the Breckenridge Music Festival Orchestra in summer 2014 for his 15th season with the orchestra, where he performs in the chamber orchestra, brass ensemble, and brass trio, and serves on the BMF orchestra committee. Dr. Robertson was honored to receive a Summer 2013 creative activity and research grant to record a CD/digital recording project titled "The Conditions of a Solitary Bird". Recording took place in Nashville and Champaign/Urbana in June 2013.The digital album will be released on March 19th, 2014 for digital download from CD Baby and other outlets. The physical CD will be available shortly. An article titled "Axiom Brass: The Business of Chamber Music" was published in the spring 2013 edition of the Brass Herald Magazine. An article titled "An Integrated Approach to Preparing Paul Hindemith's Sonata for Trombone and Piano. A Guide to help achieve a better performance" was published in the spring edition of the International Trombone Association Journal. Dr. Robertson has been invited to perform and present at the 2014 Eastern Trombone Workshop and the 2014 International Tuba Euphonium Conference.
Richard Robert Rossi (Orchestra and Choir) was chosen Composer of the Month in September 2013 by Colla Voce Publishing http://www.collavoce.com/search?searchword=richard+robert+rossi ) He was the Guest Choral Conductor for theIllinois Music Educators Association, November 2013, Macomb, IL.He conducted a select senior high school chorus from District IV in a Premiere Performance of his most recent publication/composition: A Red, Red Rose. New Publications include: As The Father Has Loved Me (SATB w/ Organ and Violin), GIA Publications: 2013; Of Beauty (Choral/Orchestral Version) Full Orchestral Version: Piccolo, 2Flute, 2Oboe, English Horn, 2Clarinet, 2 Bassoon, 2Horn, 2Trumpet, 3Trombone, Tuba, Strings, Timpani, Percussion, Harp, SATB Chorus, Colla Voce Music inc.: (2013); Of Beauty (SATB with Chamber Orchestra Version) Chamber Orchestra Version: 2horn, Strings, Harp, SATB Chorus, Colla Voce Music Inc.: forthcoming (2013); and Red, Red Rose A, SATB w/ Soprano solo, Piano & Violin solo, Colla Voce Music Inc.: 2013.
Jamie V. Ryan (Percussion) experienced several musical highlights in 2013 and early 2014. With the Africa->West Percussion Trio, which he co-founded in 1999, he released Abure, the group's third recording, available digitally and in conventional formats worldwide. Africa->West also played extensively in 2013, including the Wisconsin Percussive Arts Society chapter's Day of Percussion, several chamber music series throughout the Midwest, and at Baldwin Wallace University, where the group serves as an ensemble-in-residence. Additionally, Mr. Ryan toured South Korea in August of 2013 with the Galaxy Percussion Group. They performed several concerts at the invitation of Akademie Percussion Ensemble of Seoul, celebrating that ensemble's 20th anniversary. In January of 2014, Mr. Ryan performed the Music of the Who as a soloist with the Kennesaw State University Symphony Orchestra. This is a project that spans several years, initiated by Mr. Ryan as well as Dr. Michael Alexander, conductor of the KSU orchestra, and pianist/vocalist/arranger Tim Whalen, a member of the Pershing's Own Army band. In 2014, Mr. Ryan will perform with Africa->West, the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra, and has been invited to perform in a duo at the North American Saxophone Alliance conference.
Ka-Wai Yu (Cello) published an arrangement of Schumann's Cello Concerto (for cello and string quartet) with A-R Editions, Inc. in September 2013. He was concerto soloist with Chamber Orchestra Kremlin in Spring 2013, and performed at Indiana Wesleyan University, Manchester University and Millikin University, among other places. He also had an interview and short performance on the radio WILL-FM.
Magie Smith (Clarinet) co-presented the clinic, "Inspire Your Ensemble: Incorporating Chamber Music in your Band and Orchestra Classrooms," at the 2013 ILMEA Conference in Peoria, IL. She and colleague, Dr. Rebecca Johnson, have performed and presented a number of recitals and clinics throughout the region. Most notably, they were selected to present their clinic, "Flute and Clarinet Chamber Music for Young Musicians" at the 2012 Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago, Illinois. They have performed several times over the past couple of years, both on and off campus. Most recently, they performed with pianist Cara Chowning at the Kentucky Flute Festival (January 2014), in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Music from this program will also be featured on a concert as part of the VII CONVENCION INTERNACIONAL DE FLAUTISTAS EN EL CENTRO DEL MUNDO, this summer, in Quito, Ecuador. Clarinet students of Dr. Smith's have been selected as Honor's Recital recipients, concerto competition winners and semi-finalists, and have been accepted to excellent graduate programs for clarinet. Jacqueline Bretz-Eichorn (2008 EIU graduate) began a MM in clarinet performance at The Ohio State University in the fall of 2008. In the spring of 2013, she completed her Doctorate of Musical Arts Degree, also from Ohio State. In the fall of 2013, Moria Tunison (2013 EIU graduate and 2011 ESO Concerto-Winner) began a MM in clarinet performance at Michigan State University. In the fall of 2013, the EIU Student Clarinet Quartet was invited to perform at the Vandoren Clarinet Ensemble Festival at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana.
Polly Rapp '44 was recently in touch with Vicki Woodard, who tells of the reunion after 70 years of the trio called "Pinups in Pinafores". In 1943–44 when she was a Senior, their trio sang with the dance and concert band for several occasions at Eastern and when the band went on trips. Last August, a friend, Tavey Wright of Marshall, IL, was instrumental in arranging a meeting for Polly, along with Libby Wells who had celebrated her 90th birthday. Polly found Thelma Briggs, age 92, on the internet, and the reunion of the trio was set for lunch in Champaign. WCIA TV covered the event, as did a representative from the Robinson Daily News. The original TV interview can be found here. The Robinson Daily had a wonderful write-up, a full half-page on page 1.
Karol Baugh '59, M.S. '65 has had a complete career teaching instrumental, all levels: as a brass instructor of a World Championship Wausau Story Drum & Bugle Corp (Wausau Wi.) 1976, as a District and State music adjudicator, and as the owner of music store and horn repair shop Wausau, Wi. Karol played bass with the Wausau Symphony and the Wausau Community Theater Pit Orchestra as well as with some of the best Polish Bands in Central Wisconsin! Since retiring, Karol is teaching music theory and music appreciation at Nicolet Technical College, Rhinelander, Wi., and plays bass with the Woodland Strings, a chamber group based in Three Lakes Wi. Karol heads up the Three Lakes Summer Horse Shoe League and works with a local charity group to raise money for scholarships and community projects
Larry S. Barnfield '61 has served as Director of Fine and Performing Arts for Dorchester District Two in Summerville, SC for the past 15 years. The district consists of 22 schools with approximately 24,000 students. He has a fine and performing arts faculty this year of 142. One of the schools is an auditioned arts magnet and two others have arts infused schools. Contact Larry at the following address: Larry S. Barnfield, Director Fine and Performing Arts, Gifted and Fine Arts Center, Dorchester School District Two, Summerville, SC 29483
Carole (Williams) Ingram '63 received her Masters Degree in Piano Performance in 1964. She was offered a Graduate Assistantship in the spring of 1963 before she graduated with my Bachelor of Science degree May of 1963. She graduated from high school in May of 1960 and went through college in 3 years for her undergraduate degree. Piano performance and Music Education were major areas with organ as her minor instrument. She chose to teach in public schools, teach private piano lessons, and play professionally as a church organist and professional accompanist, rather than trying to get on a concert circuit as a pianist. She has been a church professional organist all through the years and played professionally on the piano as an accompanist, and as a soloist as well. Carole has been the head organist at a large church in Overland Park, Kansas (Presbyterian Church of Stanley) for the past 12+ years, as well as teaching piano students. She and her husband, Larry Ingram, have 4 children (all are married) and are blessed with 9 grandchildren. They live at 9823 Vista Drive, Lenexa, KS 66220.
Judith Voorhees '64, M.A. '65 taught elementary general music for 40 years, and had a very successful elementary choir made up of 5th and 6th graders that started in her third year of teaching. She has been a church organist since 1965 and also directs the adult choir, a youth choir in her church, and does Sunday School music for children through fifth grade.
Bob '64 and Marilyn '65 Bennett are now living in St. Louis, Mo, where Bob is directing the chancel choir at the Lafayette Park United Methodist Church. Marilyn is ushering for the St. Louis Symphony on a regular basis as well as accompanying the choir where Bob directs. Both are enjoying their grandchildren, the reason for their move to STL! They are enjoying the many opportunities STL has to offer such as the museums, art galleries, concerts, etc. Marilyn also is a volunteer with the Commission Visitors Convention in downtown STL, which welcomes visitors to the city. Music is obviously still a VERY important part of their lives!
Helen Krehbiel, M.S. '67 graduated from Bethel College in North Newton, Kansas in 1957, taught elementary music for a few years in Moundridge, KS, her hometown, then moved to Kansas State University in Manhattan, KS and helped support her husband while he earned his Ph.D in Embryology. Their next stop was Charleston, IL where Gene was a Zoology professor. Helen earned her MS in music education at EIU, then taught public school music in Charleston schools for several years until budget cuts wiped out her job and caused her decision to return to EIU to earn credentials necessary to teach third grade where her job was more secure. She integrated music throughout the entire curriculum. After Gene's sudden death, Helen took a leave of absence from her teaching job and earned a Ph.D from U of Ill, then taught at EIU in the Music Dept. for ten years, retired in 1998. She was the music student teaching coordinator and did the placements and evaluations and also taught Methods courses during her tenure there. Music is helping keep Helen's spirits high as she grieves the loss of her husband, John Reed. She plays piano with a close friend. Their duet programs have been successful fundraisers for several charities in the Charleston community. Helen's sons live in the O states, Ohio, Oklahoma and Oregon. She loves traveling to their homes and spending time with wonderful family- sons, daughters-in-law, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Her hobbies include bridge, sewing, reading and quilting.
Bob Rogers '69 is very PROUD of the degrees he received while a student at EIU. After a distinguished 10 year career as a successful high school band director he was fortunate to start his own group travel business that specializes in tours for Jr .HS and HS bands, choirs and orchestras. Bob Rogers Travel has been a leader in the student travel industry for almost 34 years. Tami and Todd Rogers, daughter and son of the owner, continue to grow the business and dedicate themselves with PRIDE each and every day to BRT. Our groups travel both domestically and internationally and they are experts when it comes time to handling the needs of music groups. They handle all of the travel arrangements so that the director can concentrate on the musical aspects of the trip. Their focus is on setting up meaningful performances and cultural opportunities for the students to enjoy and remember for a long time. For any music director requesting a competitive quote to the destination of their choice please call Bob Rogers Travel at 630-824-4343 or 800-373-1423.
Kay (Dowden) Byers '70 has fond memories of good ole EIU and all of the days/hours at the Fine Arts Center. She looks forward to hearing about friends from college days in the music department through this newsletter! You can contact Kay at: Dr. Kay Byers, Supervisor of Elementary Personnel Services, Human Resources Department, Lincoln Public Schools
Mick Garrison 70' has stayed in touch with several Phi Mu Alpha fraternity brothers over the years and has attended homecomings and reunions as well since attending EIU from 1966 thru 1970. His daughter graduated from EIU with an Elementary Education degree in 2010. After earning a Masters in Music from the U of I in 1971, Mick played trumpet and sang in the 5th Army Band located in San Antonio, Texas. His main employer during the next stage of life was Fedex. After a twenty year career in operations, he retired in 2003 and started a franchise dog training business with his wife. He has played cornet and trumpet in the Northshore Concert Band, The Illinois Brass Band and numerous community theater productions. He currently sings tenor in the Chicago Master Singers. They perform in the Chicagoland area and will be singing in Austria, Slovenia and Serbia for 2 weeks this summer.
David Koontz '74 began his teaching career at West Richland School District in Noble, IL after graduating in 1974. After teaching there for three years as the elementary and high school band director, he accepted a junior high band director position in the Flora, IL school district. He taught there from 1977 until retirement in 2008. Since retiring, he volunteers with the bands at the junior high and high school. He gives private lessons on band instruments, guitar, and violin in his spare time. When needed, he writes band arrangements for the bands. Sibelius is a valuable tool! During January through March, he builds sets for the high school musical. He seems to be as busy, or busier, than when he was teaching! David sends best wishes to all current students, faculty and alumni.
Ellen Hogge Kruse '74 taught elementary music for 11 years after graduating with a BM in 1974. Then after being a stay at home Mom for several years, she studied library science and finished her teaching career as a school librarian in Cowden, IL. Ellen is currently retired and serving as the choir director and organist at Shelbyville 1st Presbyterian and playing at a local nursing home. She loved her time in the music dept. at EIU!
Brenda (Cook) Clark '75 is Music Department Chair and Director of Music Education Programs at the University of Indianapolis. Her responsibilities have included teaching introductory courses in music education, elementary, general, and secondary instrumental methods, music methods for elementary education majors, supervision of pre-student teaching field experience, student teaching supervision, directing pep band, recruitment, and student advising. As advisor for the Department's Collegiate Chapter of the National Association of Music Education, Clark's students have received numerous awards at the local, state and national levels, and she was selected as the 2013 Collegiate Music Educator of the Year by the Indiana Music Education Association. Prior to coming to UIndy, Dr. Clark's experiences included teaching and administrating all areas and facets of music education, including rural, urban, and suburban school settings in central Illinois. Her degrees include a Bachelor of Music (1975) and Type 75 Administrative Certificate (2006) from Eastern Illinois University, and a M.M.E. (1998) and Ph.D. (2005) from the University of Illinois.
Maria Kezios Eynon '75 is currently teaching vocal/general music to children ages 1 1/2 through 5th grade at an independent school, The Seven Hills School-Doherty, in Cincinnati, OH. She is in her 9th year there.
Bob Good '76 and Linda (Wilson) Good '74 both retired from teaching music in May 2012. Linda taught general music for 29 years at the Summit Hill School District in Frankfort, IL. During her tenure, she formed the Hilda Walker Middle School Chorus, which won repeated first division ratings at the IGSMA district and state competitions. Linda also developed the Lyric Opera program with the 4th grade students in the district. Linda is a Kodaly and Orff specialist. Bob taught 36 years, including the last 33 years as Director of Bands at Argo Community High School in Summit, IL. During this time, the Argonaut Bands won numerous first place awards in local and state competitions in Concert, Marching, and Jazz. Bob was named Chicago Area Music Educator of the year in 2011, and is listed in Who's Who in American Education. He served several positions with the IMEA and IHSA including two terms as IMEA District 1 President. The music facilities at Argo High School have recently been named the Bob Good Instrumental Music Center. Bob and Linda have 2 daughters, Heather Wakefield and Holly Schwider, who are also music educators and have studied music at EIU.
Valerie Chereskin '76 is now based in San Diego where she started her public relations business in 1991. Valerie was honored with the 2013 PR Professional of the Year award by the Public Relations Society of America – San Diego chapter. In addition to her PR work with emerging high tech companies, Valerie regularly plays flute in community orchestras, bands and chamber groups, including a flute/piano/cello trio called Three's Company. Her husband Jay Hansen is an attorney, and they enjoy traveling, especially throughout Europe. Valerie is on Twitter @vchereskin
Karen Malkovich McClusky '76 just retired after 37 years of teaching in Harrisburg, IL. While beginning in general music K-6 she took a long and winding path through the elementary grades, gifted education, winding up with the last 18 years teaching 8th grade social studies but also directing the middle school choir, plays & musicals. She found the Broadway Jr. musicals perfectly suited for her students and my passion. She also performs with a choir through the community college and has been fortunate to have performed at Carnegie Hall, St. Louis Cathedral in New Orleans and as part of a European choir tour. Karen completed her Masters and PhD degrees in education at SIU, traveled to all 50 states and 30+ countries. She teaches adjunct classes for Rockford University in an off-campus masters degree program throughout Southern Illinois. She has 1 son (a chiropractor) and 3 grandchildren.
Jeff Pellaton '78 is just wrapping up a thirty year career overseas with the DOD schools system and will retire in June. They recently hosted Darmon Meader and Prof Jiggs Whigham at the 31st annual Dodds Honor Jazz Seminar and are gearing up for the Dodds Honor Band/Choir in April. You can contact him at the following address: Jeff Pellaton (EIU 78-79), Director of Bands, Ramstein High School, Ramstein AB, Germany
Doug Nicholson '79 is currently directing band in Meridian Schools (Macon, IL), and directs the music at First Presbyterian in Decatur. He will be retiring from public school teaching in May after 35 years.
Virginia Schoene '79 has been teaching for the past 25 years at Mulberry Grove CUSD #1 in Mulberry Grove, IL; 21 of the those years, she was teaching music (several of which she was the music teacher AND the school librarian), and 4 of the years she was the school librarian. At the moment, she is back to teaching music and library and will be retiring at the end of the 2014-2015 school year. Prior to her years at Mulberry Grove, Virginia taught music in three other districts: West Richland (Noble, IL), Ohio schools (Ohio, IL), and Putnam County schools (Granville, IL). She and her cat, Oliver, currently reside in Trenton, IL. We live on the farm where she grew up with her mother and sister.
Monica Johnson '80 graduated from EIU and then received a Masters degree in Vocal Performance from the Eastman school of Music. After moving with her husband, a percussionist, to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, they both performed professionally. David had a Fulbright professorship and played timpani in the orchestra while Monica developed music programs for babies, taught privately, and did a concert tour. Currently, Monica is teaching elementary music in Austin, Texas, where she has lived for 25 years. She also performs with the professional ensemble Conspirare, teaches privately, performs on recitals and at church and participates in various musical ensembles. Her husband created a CD, Memories of Brazil, in which he performs on the vibraphone, and Monica performs on one of the tracks. Their daughter, an art director in graphic design and vocalist, is performing on two of the tracks. She created the lyrics after interviewing Monica and her husband about their experiences in Brazil. The CD is available through CD baby, iTunes. Besides music, Monica also hand quilts, gardens and volunteers at an animal shelter.
Rachel Kramer '83, M.A. '85 holds a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance (1983) and Master of Arts Degree in Music (1985) from Eastern Illinois University and a Master of Music in piano performance and pedagogy from The University of Michigan. She is an adjunct faculty member at Wilmington College where she teaches piano classes and accompanies the College Chorale and College-Community Chorus. She is the President of Music Learning Center, Inc. in Cincinnati, and President and Co-Founder of Cincinnati Center for Adult Music Study, Inc. From 1990-1996, Kramer served as the Manager of Educational Programs for the Baldwin Piano & Organ Co. She is the Associate Director of Music at St. John's Unitarian Universalist Church in Cincinnati and is Associate Director and Accompanist Emerita of MUSE – Cincinnati's Women's Choir. She is the Director of Member Development for MTNA where she has also held the positions of Assistant Executive Director, Director of Education and Member Liaison since joining the staff in 1998. Rachel serves as immediate past-president and VP-Communications for the OMTA -Southwest District Music Teachers Association, serves on the Greater Cincinnati Area Coalition for Music and Wellness, served on the 2012 World Choir Games Music Advisory Committee and is the Co-District Liaison for the Heartland District of the UUMN. Rachel is the 2009 Ohio Independent Music Teacher of the Year. She is a certified MTNA Specialist in Group Piano Teaching and Recreational Music Making and is co-creator of the piano program at Warren Correctional Institution in Lebanon, Ohio where she teaches. Rachel is also the accompanist for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Coalition Chorale in Cincinnati. Rachel has published many articles on various topics of teaching and piano pedagogy, has done workshops across the country, adjudicated and has taught group piano to students of all ages for over 25 years: from colleges to country clubs to cruise lines!
Sarah Springer '84 lives in Kankakee, IL. She attended EIU from 1980-1984, graduating with a Bachelor degree in music education. She returned home to Kankakee to teach music in Kankakee School District 111 where she has stayed for the last 29 years. She has taught general music in grades K-6 and 5/6th grade choir. Sarah is married with two junior high school children and 3 dogs. When not teaching, she plays chauffeur to her kids' sporting and musical events.
Stacey (Green) Mandell '85 had life events and eagerness for continuing education that took her in a direction other than music after graduation, namely, the law. She graduated from the College of Law at Northern Illinois University in 1996, and has been a licensed attorney ever since. She researches and drafts opinions and orders for an Illinois Appellate Court justice. She is actively involved with the Illinois Appellate Lawyers Association, as a committee chair and a former Director. Stacey also supervises law students who intern in the judge's chambers, helping them to further develop their legal research and writing skills. She has been married since New Year's Day 1997, and they make their home in DeKalb, Illinois.
Kurt Gartner '86 serves as Professor and Associate Director of the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance at Kansas State University. There, he teaches applied percussion and percussion methods. Also, he directs the Percussion Ensemble, Keyboard Percussion Quartets, and the Latin Jazz Ensemble (which will study in Havana in summer, 2014). As a 2010-2011 Tilford Fellow, he coordinated an interdisciplinary study of Cuban arts. In the past, he was a Big 12 Faculty Fellow, collaborating with the percussion studio and jazz program at the University of Missouri. There, he provided instruction and performances in Afro-Cuban music and applications of technology in music. He has served as Special Assistant to the Provost and as Coordinator of the university's Peer Review of Teaching Program.Gartner has performed professionally in orchestral, jazz, chamber, world, and commercial venues, and has performed on a showcase concert and presented additional clinics and performances at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention. He is an educational consultant for Remo, Sabian, Vic Firth, and Etymotic Research.Prior to his appointment at KSU, Gartner served as Associate Professor of Bands at Purdue University. In 2001, he completed his Doctor of Arts degree at the University of Northern Colorado. At UNC, he directed ensembles, taught jazz history, and was the Assistant Director of the UNC/Greeley Jazz Festival. Also, he received the Graduate Dean's Citation for Outstanding Dissertation for his research of the late percussion legend, Tito Puente. Gartner is a founding member and contributing composer of the Indiana-based Los Blancos Latin Jazz Band. He is the technology editor for the journal Percussive Notes.
Jonathan Schwabe, M.A. '88 is Professor of Theory and Composition at the University of Northern Iowa. He is still active as a composer and bassist; a new work for chamber orchestra "Morning of the Curious Hoarfrost" will receive its premiere in March 2014 in Charleston SC as a part of the College of Charleston's Magnetic South Series. Jonathan attended EIU from 1986-88, studied composition with Peter Hesterman, double bass with Donald Tracy, and played in the Jazz Ensemble directed by Alan Horney. He still maintains close professional and personal ties with the fine EIU jazz faculty.
Melanie (Dumstorff) Ryterski '89 is in her 25th year of teaching music. The last 17 of those years, Melanie has been in the Waterloo, IL School District as an elementary music teacher. She currently has approximately 650 general music students in grades K-2. She and her husband, Craig, are the proud parents of two daughters, ages 16 and 12. They live in Columbia, Illinois.
Todd Laughhunn '91 is still playing drums in the band Coal Shaft and is owner and operator of his own business, Illinois Hotspots Guide Service where he is a full time fishing guide here in central IL. After graduating in 1990 under the study of the great Johnny Lee Lane, Todd taught percussion lessons for 20 years and played drums in several successful bands. He now runs his business that he started in 1996, plays with Coal Shaft a few times a month and runs around watching his 2 sons, Hunter, who is 16 and plays lead guitar in the Breakaway Band and Gunner who is 13 and is an outstanding athlete who keeps Todd and his wife, Seirra, busy with his baseball schedule. Todd also deer hunts with his boys and his Dad (in college his nickname given to him from Prof. Lane was "The Deer Hunter").
Barbara Graves Shimer '95 is the Director of Theater at Lincoln Trail College in Robinson, Illinois and is currently directing "Les Miserables" with performances March 28 through April 6 – F, S, Su performances only. She still teaches voice and works closely with the Music Department and enjoys a trip to Charleston now and then!
David A. Beccue, MA '98 graduated in December 1998 from EIU with a MA in Keyboard Performance. He completed the DMA in December 2003 in organ performance at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music. While at UMKC David served as a GTA and Adjunct Assistant Professor of Music teaching keyboard skills courses to provide graduate and undergraduate students keyboard proficiency. Since 2003 he has worked in church music as an organist and choir director. In 2006 he completed the Master of Science in Nursing at Research College of Nursing, Kansas City, MO and works at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center as a Nurse Practitioner in Vascular Surgery.
Tom Nevill '98 is currently serving as Chair of the Department of Music at The University of Texas Brownsville. He earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree and a Master's degree in Percussion Performance from The University of Nevada, Las Vegas and a Bachelor of Music degree from Eastern Illinois University. Dr. Nevill is an active member of the Percussive Arts Society and served as Chair of the PAS Scholarly Research Committee from 2007 to 2009. He is an artist/clinician for Evans Drumheads, Pearl/Adams Musical Instruments, SABIAN Cymbals and a member of the Vic Firth Sticks and Mallets Education Team. He remains active throughout the United States and Mexico as a performer, clinician, educator and scholar.
Eric McEnaney '00 graduatedwith a BM in Piano Performance and Pedagogy, as a student of David Hobbs and Meg Gray. He is now a full-time freelance pianist and vocal coach working as a guest for opera companies around the country and also runs a private vocal coaching studio in Minneapolis, where he makes his home. You can find out more about Eric at www.ericmcenaney.com.
Michelle Meinhart '00 completed a Ph.D. in musicology at the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati in 2013. She is now an assistant professor of music history at Martin Methodist College (near Nashville, Tennessee). Next month she has an article coming out in the Journal of Musicological Research titled "Memory and Private Mourning in an English Country House: Lady Alda Hoare's Musical Shrine to a Lost Son." Her essay "Variations on the Grand Tour: Musical Empathy, Catholic Communion, and Risorgimento Sympathy in the Mid-Nineteenth-Century Italian Travel Diaries of Lady Anne Noel Blunt" will appear in an interdisciplinary edited collection titled Perplext by Faith: Essays on Victorian Belief and Doubts, edited by Alisa Clapp-Itnyre and Julie Melnyk.. This year, Michelle will be presenting papers at the AMS South-Central chapter meeting; the University of Toronto (Eighteenth Biennial Conference on Nineteenth-Century Music); and at the British Library in London (Music of War: 1914-1918 conference).
Tiffany C. Williams '00 serves as Show Choir/Concert Choir/Piano Instructor at Southeast High School, Springfield, IL.
Jordan Kaye '02 is currently directing the early jazz ensemble, the guitar ensemble, and beginning guitar class at Parkland College. He also performs in the Champaign area with the folk group the Prairie Dogs.
Corby Steinbraker '03 & Michael Block '11 are working as Arts Liaisons for the Chicago Public Schools Department of Arts. Of the 8 district-wide elected lead art liaisons, 2 are EIU department alumni! Arts Liaisons serve as the on-site school arts champion to lead arts programming and opportunities for their school communities, to connect students to resources in the arts, and to inspire their school community toward high-quality engagement of the arts. Currently, Arts Liaisons are key to ensuring the successful implementation of the CPS Arts Education Plan through coordination with administrators, teachers, parents, students, teaching artists, arts organizations, community groups and others. Check out the CPS Department of Arts Education for details.
Abby Heras '04 had difficulty finding a job after graduating but eventually began teaching at the Hope Academy in Decatur. She stayed there from January 2006–September 2010 as the instrumental music teacher. She taught both band and orchestra, and occasionally a general music class. At the time, this was a brand new PreK-8 school, and it is a 90% low-income and minority building. Abby led many clubs, including guitar club, chess club, track and volleyball. The current music teacher at Hope Academy is also an EIU grad that has picked up the program. Mr. Brandon Jelks has taken the program added to it, adding a Jazz band. In the fall of 2010, Abby began a job at Garden Hills Elementary in Champaign, IL. She teaches general music and has an after-school guitar ensemble. They regularly play in the community due the number of requests by local organizations. She is also an instructor for the Banks, Bridgewater and Lewis After School Program. She leads the Developing Band and works for their summer camps. She has also joined the Parkland Early Jazz Ensemble, running into Jordan Kaye, an EIU music graduate student. When she married her husband, a school psychologist, in 2010, the wedding was EIU all around: the person who married them was a graduate student in music, Matt Walicke. The jazz combo that performed - all EIU students: Brian Warszona, Waylon Schroeder, Dave Pride and Adam Walton. And of course, they met at EIU.
Eric Chapman '06 will graduate from the university of Missouri - Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance with a DMA in composition. He has a CD of original works for jazz orchestra that is expected to be released this spring titledJ.E. Chapman, 364 Days. It will be available through cd baby. He has been a member of one of Kansas City's active big bands, The New Jazz Order Big Band, and recorded with them for their self-titled release (2010). He leads his own ensemble, The J.E. Chapman Music Circus that was most recently featured as part of the Black Lab Music Series in October of 2013.
Chris Dickey '07 graduated with a degree in performance, and later earned an MA from The University of Iowa (2009) and a DM (2013) from Northwestern University. He currently teaches at Washington State University and the University of Idaho. Out in the Pacific Northwest, he is active with solo recitals, clinics, conferences, and chamber music. He has served on the faculty for the 2013 and 2014 Isla Verde Bronces International Brass Festival in Cordoba, Argentina. In March 2013, Chris co-hosted the Northwest Regional Tuba-Euphonium Conference. Dedicated to expanding the repertoire for tuba and euphonium, Chris has commissioned new works and has transcribed pieces for both instruments. Over the summer he will record a solo CD of mostly transcriptions that will likely be released in spring 2015. This summer he will be performing at the International Tuba-Euphonium Conference and teaching at the Red Lodge Music Festival in Red Lodge, Montana. Chris feels that he was extremely prepared to enter graduate school and the music profession because the EIU music department faculty had high expectations of him, and he thinks they helped shape his approach to music, his work ethic, and nurtured his future career. EIU will always hold a special place in his heart! You can contact him at: Dr. Chris Dickey, Miraphone Performing Artist, Clinical Assistant Professor of Music, Washington State University, School of Music, Kimbrough 257
Chris Mroczek '07 is currently one of the Band Directors at Lincoln-Way East High School in Frankfort, IL. He teaches two concert bands, as well as courses in piano and electronic music. Outside of the school day, Chris is also one of the directors of the Marching Griffins, the LWE Pep Band, and the conductor of the pit orchestra for the Spring Musical. The Pep Band finished a strong season with a band of 85 members and they currently are working to prepare for their performances of "Beauty and the Beast" in early April. Chris and the other band director have also already begun putting together the next season for the Marching Griffins, which begins officially in early June.
Justin DeAngelo '08 is living in Chicago with his fiancé (Eastern alum Gina Lobianco, English '11). He teaches piano, composition and theory at Upbeat Music School, a music studio on the South side of Chicago. He has a studio of about 30 students. He is also involved as a freelance musician and performs occasionally with a couple of different groups performing jazz and just about anything that will pay. He is also a server (food/drink) at the Art Institute of Chicago's premier fine dining restaurant, Terzo Piano.
Steve Kaiser '11, M.A. '13 is currently based in the Chicago area. He teaches at a shop called The Music Room in Palatine, IL. At The Music Room, Steve has 19 private guitar, bass and piano students. He also teaches a group guitar class that meets once per week. In terms of performing, Steve currently leads a jazz trio. They have only had a couple performances but will be more active this Spring.
Caleb McGregor '12 is currently a licensed local pastor, pastoring a church just north of Champaign (east of Rantoul.) He is going to Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois, a United Methodist Seminary and is on the track to be an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church. (He commutes via Amtrak each week.) As far as music goes, Caleb uses his piano skills to complement his ministries at the church, whether it's helping with the church choir or helping teach new music to the congregation. Three people in the last year have pushed him to try writing lyrics. He was really inspired to write some lyrics after going to England last April on a Wesley Pilgrimage (John and Charles Wesley are the founders of the Methodist movement.) Charles Wesley is considered the most prolific hymn-writer in the history of the Christian Church, and Caleb got to play his original pipe organ in London, which has to be over 250 years old! He hopes to write the tunes or lyrics to some new hymns (maybe use some partimenti) for the new hymnal.
Lyndsey Breymeyer (Palmer) '12 was married about 4 months ago and is working as a Teacher's Assistant at Gerber School which the residential school at Cunningham Children's Home in Urbana. She works one on one with kids who have severe emotional and behavioral disabilities to complete their classroom assignments and assist in developing their social skills for daily living. Lyndsey is still looking to teach music and is trying to start a program at Cunningham Children's Home. Lyndsey asks that readers please take the time to watch a video they made entitled "Hope Begins Here" that describes what the mission of the organization is. Hopefully someday they will be able to fund a music program in their school. In the mean time, Lyndsey hopes to return to school for her master's degree in Special Education at the University of Illinois in the fall. Working with the kids she works with has inspired her to continue along that path and make a difference in their lives.
Molly Elvert '13 is currently teaching in Bridgeport, IL at Red Hill High School. She teaches High School band and choir, assists with Jr. High band lessons, and also teaches an 8th grade technology class and an extra-curricular jazz band. Currently they are very busy preparing for solo and ensemble and the high school dinner theater, which both happen in March.
Jocelyn Pritchard (Davis) '13 is now teaching K-5 General Music, 5th Grade Beginning Band, and 4th & 5th Grade Choir in the Unity School District in Philo, Illinois. She also has a small private studio of voice and piano students in the Champaign area.
Jonathan Summers '13 says that life as a music graduate has been hard, but he's still working. He works full time as a technology sales representative for a company called CDW. On the music side of things, Jonathan is a member of the Classical Symphony Orchestra in Chicago.
He is also a substitute player for the Lake Geneva Symphony orchestra in Lake Geneva, WI.
He will have an audition for the civic Chicago orchestra in April and plans to go back to school for his Masters in percussion performance in the 2015-2016 year.