Music Beyond the Classroom
The weekly Recital Forum Series has supplemented the Music Department’s course offerings for decades. Every Monday at noon during the academic year, the Music Department invites guests to present on how music has shaped their career. These noon lectures educate students on unique careers in music beyond teaching and performing, and widen the perspective of how music can make an impact. Music majors and minors, and other Saint Mary’s community members gather in Moreau 114 to hear from presenters as they talk about topics such as their work in music therapy, marching band drill design, and how to maintain a successful high school choir program.
Nancy Menk, Chair of the Department of Music, said the Recital Forum Series began as a way to introduce students to topics in music that are not offered in a class, and to get students thinking about all the career possibilities music can provide after graduation. The series also incorporates opportunities for faculty members to talk about their professional research in the field and for student recitals performed in the Little Theatre. While many who attend the series are music students, the series is free and open to the public.
Each year a different music faculty member curates the series. They call upon adjunct faculty, personal connections, community members, and recommendations from others to help fill out the series for the semester. They consider what students are learning in their classes to help make connections between course content and real-world application. For example, Heyni Solera, a professional musician, will be playing the bandoneon on November 8 alongside music faculty member, Daniel Stein, on the violin. This presentation connects well with Stein’s Latin American Pop Music class, where the bandoneon is discussed. Most importantly, the Recital Forum gives students a chance to see what they are learning about in action and provides them with an opportunity to connect with musicians beyond the Saint Mary’s campus.
The series offers a wide array of topics each semester. Besides the guest speakers, students also get a chance to present their work. On November 29, students in orchestration and composition courses will share their pieces with attendees who may not be in their class. These “show and tells” help recognize the creative work students are producing and just might encourage someone else to take the course next time. The wide appeal of the weekly lectures and performances opens the invitation to the whole community to step inside Moreau and enjoy the many things that are happening here. Join us on Mondays at noon in Moreau 114 to discover the depth of the Music Department and learn something new!