By Guadalupe Pinedo
The Department of Music welcomed the campus community at its Winter Showcase Music Hour on Thursday during U-Hour in the Music Recital Hall.
The showcase was a free event that featured students from the music department. The event is held every quarter and serves as a way for students to experience performing in front of an audience.
“For any artist, whether it be music, dance, art [or] visual art, the more you perform the better you become. It’s a performing art, so as a department, we do a lot of events like the showcase to ensure that our music majors are then prepared for the real world,” said Rickey Badua, assistant professor at CPP’s music department.
Faculty members work with students throughout the quarter and recommend the music students when they believe students are ready to perform in front of an audience. Students who are asked to participate can chose to present vocal or instrumental pieces.
“Students who have achieved a certain level of performance readiness are considered,” said Teresa Kelly, the music department publicist.
The students worked one-on-one with their professors to prepare themselves for the performance. Music choice was also a collaborative effort between student and teacher. Students performed musical pieces they worked on throughout the quarter.
The show featured nine soloists, seven performed instrumental pieces and two performed vocal numbers. There were also two group performances at the showcase, one of which performed publically for the first time.
“This is just another performance opportunity for music majors to perform usually solo repertoire and or chamber repertoire,” said Badua.
The Winter Showcase provided attendees with a wide range of musical selections. Whether it was classical music or something modern, the goal was to provide the audience with a wide selection of music while simultaneously preparing students for real world scenarios.
The hour started off with a piano piece from Matt Borgialli followed by soprano vocalist Morgan Semrau. As the showcase went on the audience experienced captivating performances from guitarists Josh Franklin and Erasmo Perez.
Some of the selections for the showcase included “Part of Your World,” “Un Dia de Noviembre” and “Concerto in A Minor, No. 6: Mvt 1” among many more.
A small jazz combo was composed of Teresa Lem on the baritone saxophone, Bill Borjan on drums, Jacob Cook on bass and Brayden Wiggins on guitar. “Groovin High,” their song choice, proved to be a hit among audience members.
This Winter Showcase in particular was unique because it marked the first time that the newly formed vocal jazz group performed. The group members have only been together for three weeks and performed two selections for the showcase. The group is conducted by one of the music department’s faculty members, Kendra Vuk.
The group closed the show with its renditions of “If I Loved You” and “Splanky,” and its performance had the audience bopping to the beat until the last note.
The showcase also featured renditions of modern music. Danielle Elle Neri, vocalist and pianist, gave Drake’s “Hotline Bling” a unique twist. Her interpretation of the song on piano came toward the end of the hour.
Alexander Rossi, a fourth-year mechanical engineering student, came to the showcase for the first time as a requirement for one of his courses and said it was a unique experience and exceeded his expectations.
“It’s a large variety of music different types, different genres, different instruments, vocal instruments, piano ” it has everything; it was a good experience, better than I expected,” said Rossi.
While the Winter Showcase is one of the music department’s smaller events, it is an important way for the department to bring a more attention to the performing arts on campus.
Jean-Paul Escobar / The Poly Post
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