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253 Coulter Building
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Cullowhee, NC 28723
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Music Ensembles

Taking Ensembles for Credit
All students participating in musical ensembles must be registered for the course.  Most ensembles are available for one semester hour of credit.  To receive credit toward degree requirements for a particular ensemble, music majors and minors must enroll for 1 semester hour of credit in the appropriate course (MUS 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, or 376).  To take the ensemble without receiving credit, sign up for ensembles offered as MUS 071 through 076.  Non majors participating in marching band may elect to take the ensemble for two semester hours of credit.  Please click on this link for further details about credit policies relating to music ensembles.

Instrumental Ensembles

Wind Ensemble
Directed by Dr. John West, this auditioned ensemble of 40-50 musicians performs a challenging repertory that includes premieres of commissioned works. This group meets every semester and tours in the spring of odd-numbered years.

Marching Band
Over 300 strong, the Pride of the Mountains is one of the largest, most innovative marching bands in the country. It hosts the annual Tournament of Champions for high school bands every fall. Directed by Mr. David Starnes and Mr. Matt Henley and Mr. Jon Henson, assistant directors.

Symphony Band
Meeting in the spring semester only, this group of 60-80 musicians is open to all students without audition. Directed by Mr. David Starnes.

Jazz Band
Directed by jazz pianist Mr. Pavel Wlosok, this auditioned group performs jazz standards and new works for jazz band. Tours in the Spring of even-numbered years.

Artist-in-Residence Orchestra
With a professional string section from the Asheville Symphony Orchestra, this auditioned ensemble performs orchestral masterworks with wind, brass, and percussion students.

Civic Orchestra
A college and community chamber orchestra, led by Dr. Bradley Martin.  The Civic Orchestra rehearses on Thursday evenings and performs once a semester.  The Spring concert features winners of the Civic Orchestra Solo Competition, sponsored by the Jackson County Arts Council.

Percussion Ensemble
Led by Dr. Mario Gaetano, this group performs challenging works for various combinations of percussion instruments. Percussion majors.

Studio Ensembles
Most of the wind and brass studios offer small ensembles of like instruments that are conducted or coached by the studio teacher. Please contact studio faculty for details or click on one of the "Studio Links" at right.

Gamelan Ensemble
Tuned percussion instruments (gongs, chimes, etc.) from Indonesia. Directed by Joy Shea. No audition.

Vocal Ensembles

Concert Choir
This auditioned group performs works from the Renaissance to the 21st century, including major choral works such as Orff's “Carmina Burana” (spring 2005) and Handel's “Messiah” (fall 2004). Tours every other fall. Directed by Dr. Michael Lancaster.

University Chorus
Open to all students without audition, this group performs lighter choral works, including Broadway medleys, but also joins the Concert Choir for major works. Directed by Dr. Michael Lancaster.

Early Music Ensemble
An auditioned group of 16 singers, this group performs Renaissance music at the madrigal dinners each Fall, and tours with the Concert Choir. Directed by Dr. Michael Lancaster.

Catamount Singers
An auditioned group of 8-10 singers performing jazz and popular styles with a small instrumental combo. Directed by Dr. Bruce Frazier.

Opera Workshop
Designed for practical experience for the solo singer, the emphasis is on physical movement, ensemble work, character development and acting in opera. Students study and perform excerpted scenes in English from opera and operetta, and participate in touring productions. Dr. Mary Kay Bauer, director.

Inspirational Choir
The Inspirational Choir promotes African-American culture through song. Each year forty to fifty students of all majors perform in churches and schools throughout the Southeast. Inspirational Choir is not available for college credit. For more information, contact the Office of Student Development at 828-227-7234.

Western Carolina Community Chorus
The Western Carolina Community Chorus is composed of singers from the westernmost counties of the state.  Membership is open to singers with past experience in community, school, and church choirs. No audition is required, but regular attendance at rehearsals is essential.  Directed by Dr. Robert Holquist.

 

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