Welcome to Happening @ The Hugh, the official blog for the Hugh Hodgson School of Music at the University of Georgia. Here you’ll find behind-the-scenes looks at what our exceptional students and outstanding faculty are doing, direct from the educators themselves!
Our school is rich with talent and expertise, and that intersection creates some of the finest performing arts experiences in the country. What this blog aims to show is not just what’s happening at #TheHugh, but that it’s ALL happening at #TheHugh.
My name is Trevor Barroero and I am currently a Graduate Teaching Assistant at UGA, pursuing my Master of Music in Percussion Performance with Professors Timothy Adams and Kimberly Toscano Adams. In March of 2018, I auditioned for The National Collegiate Solo Competition hosted by The United States Army Band “Pershing’s Own.” With a few hundred applicants each year, I was honored to be chosen as the NCSC winner and was given the special opportunity to perform as a featured soloist with the Pershing’s Own.
The Army flew me out to Washington D.C. last week to rehearse with the band and perform Emmanuel Sejourne’s Concerto for Marimba at their outdoor concert in front of the United States Capitol Building. It was an absolute privilege and honor to share the stage with such remarkable musicians and it’s an experience I won’t soon forget!
This semester, sophomore composition majors in Dr. Emily Koh’s Introduction to Composition (MUSI 2822) Grant Allen, Sydney Domel, Eric Dowler, Marley Gilbert and Cameron Gwynn collaborated with Grady College students in Dr. Taylor Miller’s Documentary Production (EMST 5270/7270) in producing and scoring the five-episode first season of DOC-U, a documentary series focusing on Georgia themes. These episodes were produced alongside Mary Lynn Miller from the Richard B. Russell Jr. Special Collections Libraries Building who facilitated the research.
Each of the five episodes comprising Season One explores Georgia themes through an impressive array of collaborations, including with the UGA Veterinary Hospital and the Athletics Department, several local community groups and businesses, as well as the Departments of Economics, Anthropology, History, Geography, and Music Business, among others. The five episodes are:
Episode 1: “The Olympics Come to Georgia” (scored by Eric Dowler)
Episode 2: “The Limits of the Hope Scholarship” (scored by Marley Gilbert)
Episode 3: “Yonah and O’Ryan” (scored by Cameron Gwynn)
Episode 4: “Below Baldwin” (scored by Sydney Doemel)
Episode 5: ““Athens’ Downtown Music Scene” (scored by Grant Allen)
The premiere screening of DOC-U was held at the Tate Theatre on May 1, 7pm with more than a hundred people–students, families, faculty and community members–in the audience. There were Q&As after Episodes 1,2 and 3, and after Episodes 4 and 5 for the audience to question each student group about their documentary. Popcorn was provided by the Miller Learning Center and UGA Libraries and served by Amy Watts, a reference and research librarian at the UGA Main Library.
The student composers at the UGA Hugh Hodgson School of Music were bustling with creative energy all fall semester, composing new pieces for orchestra to compete for the incredible opportunity to have their pieces read and rehearsed by Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. To prepare, the students studied and discussed orchestral works by established composers, and even had a visit from the ASO’s head librarian to lead a workshop on the finer details of preparing sheet music for a professional orchestra.
The pieces were sent to the ASO in December, and by January the winning selections were announced:
Jason Abraham: In the Middle of the Surrounding Hullabaloo
Nikolos Bacote: Float
Nicholas Gambino: Imposter Syndrome
Badie Khaleghian: Shiraz
Annie Leeth: Anew
Catherine Willingham: A Moment in Time
On Friday, March 23rd from 1:30-4pm in Hodgson Hall at the UGA Performing Arts Center, Robert Spano will lead the Atlanta Symphony in a reading and rehearsal of each of their compositions. The reading/rehearsal session is free and open to the public. If you’ve ever wanted to know what goes into preparing a premiere of a new composition by a major orchestra, come by!
The workshop will be preceded by a 45-minute panel discussion between the Robert Spano and the selected student composers, moderated by UGA Assistant Professor of Composition, Peter Van Zandt Lane. This event will take place at on March 23rd from 12:30-1:15pm in Edge Hall at the Hugh Hodgson School of Music, and is also open to the public.
On Halloween, the HHSOM Bassoon Studio is presenting a recital featuring traditional bassoon quartet music and music from Disney movies arranged for bassoon ensemble. The students will be wearing Halloween costumes for the ensemble portion of the concert that represent characters from Disney movies. The preparation of this concert has been a wonderful experience for the students, as they have been divided into different committees and have taken ownership of the organization of the event.
UGA bassoonists Nib McKinney, Catherine Willingham, and Campbell Cona, and former UGA bassoonist Taylor Poole all arranged music for the ensemble. The promotion committee has taken over the tasks of marketing the event with digital flyers and posters as well as promoting through social media. At the recital, the philanthropy committee will be gathering donations for Habitat for Humanity in an effort to help the community and support a worthy cause.
The students have also organized a costume competition for the audience (with prizes!) and are encouraging all audience members to come dressed for Halloween. Dr. Jacalyn Hartenberger is serving as this year’s emcee for the competition. There will be a reception following the recital so that everyone can celebrate the holiday together. The students have been working exceptionally hard on preparing their parts and the other fun aspects of this event. Come join us at 6 pm in Ramsey Recital Hall on Tuesday, October 31st. Admission is free, but please bring a donation for Habitat for Humanity. If you can’t make it in person, catch the live-stream online at music.uga.edu. We promise this will be an event you’ll never forget! (P.S. see if you can find all six different student created posters online or in the HHSOM)
As we approach the end of spring 2017, our students are preparing for exams, final projects, juries and the like, but they’re still finding time for a little fun, too. Students from our horn studio and the African Music Ensemble surprised passers-by with a bunch of impromptu performances over the last few weeks in some places you’d never expect. Look below the jump for photos!
The Hodgson Wind Ensemble performed at the College Band Directors National Association national conference in Kansas City on March 16, and by all accounts, it was a complete success. Cynthia Johnston Turner, director of the ensemble, sent a few words from the road following the performance.
The Hodgson Wind Ensemble was selected to perform for the College Band Directors National Association 2017 national conference in Kansas City! The conference runs from March 15-18, with HWE performing today (watch them on http://banddirectorlive.com/ at 4:30 p.m. EST/3:30 p.m. CST). As they made their way to Missouri, the ensemble stopped in Kentucky for a special engagement. Teaching assistant/DMA conducting student Matthew Sadowski wrote about their time in Henderson, KY.