All posts by Tony Cleeton

Summer Music Institute at BGSU boosts young musicians’ skills

BOWLING GREEN, O.—Bowling Green State University’s critically acclaimed Summer Music Institute is open for registration. Presented by the College of Musical Arts, the institute features nine weeklong sessions, ranging from woodwinds to voice, brass and musical theater. Students will work with BGSU music faculty and guest artists who will challenge and inspire in a college setting. Register at before April 30 for $40 off the registration fee.

Session one (June 14-19) includes Piano Camp, Double Reed Camp, Recording Camp, String Camp and Musical Theater. During Piano Camp, students receive private lessons, participate in master classes, play piano duos, attend recitals and perform. In Double Reed Camp, students get hands-on experience making reeds, performing in master classes and honing techniques on bassoon and oboe. Students signed up for Recording Camp, for ages 15-18, will experience a professional sound studio from both sides of the glass, performing and coordinating a recording. String students will receive coaching from the BGSU string faculty and special guests. Advanced string students are encouraged to apply for the Honors String Quartet. Members of the Honors String Quartet receive a full scholarship to cover housing, meals and the registration fee. Musical Theater Camp will focus on audition techniques.

Session two (June 21-26) comprises Brass Camp, with ensembles, private lessons, seminars and performances; Super Sax Camp, which explores both classical and improvised jazz music in private lessons, chamber rehearsals, improvisation clinics and concerts; Flute Camp, whose students will receive private lessons, seminars and master classes as well as breathing, sound, articulation and technique lessons; and Vocal Arts Camp, which educates campers in diction, vocal interpretation, audition techniques, stage deportment and other performance skills. Vocal students must be entering grade 10 or higher.

Students may commute to camp or stay on campus during the week. No audition is required. Recording students must be at least 15 years of age, though exceptions can be made.

Check-in times for each camp are the first day of camp on Sunday between 1 and 3 p.m. For more information and to register, visit or call 419-372-2506.

Erik Rönmark ’01 receives 2015 College Alumni Award

erik-ronmarkErik Rönmark came to the United States from his native Sweden in 1996 to continue his musical education. A classical saxophonist by trade, Rönmark is the general manager and artistic administrator of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and has extensive performing experience in both chamber music and orchestral settings. He has performed in the Detroit Symphony Orchestra on several occasions, as a guest in Detroit Chamber Winds and Strings, and regularly appears in the contemporary group New Music Detroit, of which he is also co-founder and executive director. Recently, Rönmark was featured with the Chamber Music Society of Detroit, culminating a national tour with the Pacifica String Quartet. Rönmark is a first-prize winner of both the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition and the Coleman Chamber Music Competition. He is also the recipient of the American-Scandinavian Foundation’s award for establishing valuable relationships between Sweden and America. He has collaborated and assisted artists such as Karlheinz Stockhausen, Terry Riley, Matthew Barney, Shara Worden and Branford Marsalis, and has commissioned and premiered more than 30 new works for saxophone. Rönmark has been a part of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra administration since 2005. Rönmark holds degrees in fine arts and music performance from Northern State University and Bowling Green State University, as well as a Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of Michigan.

Aaron Kennell ’06 named Director of Bands at Nimitz High School

Aaron Kennell, BGSU alum ’06, was named the Director of Bands at Nimitz High School (Houston, TX) in the fall of 2014. Previously, he served as an assistant band director at Plummer Middle School, Aldine High School, and Randall High School.

Kennell had two music articles published in 2014. His article “Seven Positive Habits” was published in the Southwestern Musician in August and “How to train (or tame) your low brass section” was published in the School Band and Orchestra journal in June.

Aaron presented his first clinic at the Texas Music Educators Association convention in February of 2014. His presentation was titled “Seven Habits of Positive Music Educators”.

Andrew Kier, BGSU Masters Student, gives presentation at TMEA in Texas

Andrew Kier attended the annual Texas Music Educator’s Association Convention in San Antonio February 11-14, 2015.  He presented research about effective practice techniques.


The purpose of this study is twofold: a) to determine what practice techniques clarinet students perceive to be effective during the practice session and b) to provide music educators with insight when teaching students how to practice.  A total of twelve clarinet students served as the participants for this study: two undergraduate freshman, four undergraduate sophomores, one undergraduate junior, one undergraduate senior, two masters students, and two doctoral students.

Participants were provided with an excerpt each week for three weeks and were asked to prepare the excerpt and lesson assignments using specified techniques each week.  Week one consisted of slowing down the music, marking the music, and repetition.  Week two consisted of slowing down the music, marking the music, repetition, isolation, imposing obstacles, and segmenting and overlapping sections.  Week three consisted of slowing down the music, marking the music, repetition, isolation, imposing obstacles, segmenting and overlapping sections, memorization, performance run-throughs, and mental practice.

Analysis of the data indicates that there are discrepancies between some techniques’ ratings and rankings.  When rating the effectiveness of the practice techniques, participants considered each technique on an individual basis.  However, when asked to rank the techniques, participants considered the techniques as a collective whole. For example, memorization appears to be an effective practice technique from the perspective of participants’ ratings.  However, from the perspective of participants’ rankings, memorization appears to be less effective.  The results for memorization and performance run-throughs indicate that participants’ perceptions are inconsistent, and this increases the importance on consistency when using these techniques.  Participants’ perceptions also indicate that when combined the use of isolation, slowing down the music, and repetition are more effective.

TMEA-Poster copy

BGSU Trumpets chosen as finalists in ITG competitions

Marcus Flores,  Graduate Fellow in Trumpet,  has been chosen as a Finalist for the 2015 International Trumpet Guild Solo Competition.  He will perform on Friday, May 29, at the ITG Conference in Columbus, Ohio.

Tom Darlington,  Senior Trumpet Performance major,  has been chosen as a Finalist for the 2015 International Trumpet Guild Orchestral Excerpts Competition.  He will perform on Thursday, May 28, at the ITG Conference in Columbus, Ohio.

a MUSICAL tradition: College of Music ushers in 100th anniversary

The College of Musical Arts will be celebrating its 100th anniversary of music at the University on March 28 at Moore Musical Arts Center. Faculty, students and alumni will gather to experience an afternoon filled with music performances from different genres.Under the guidance of the nearly 60 distinguished full-time faculty, the Musical Arts department has blossomed into prominence.

The college has earned national recognition as one of the country’s outstanding collegiate music programs, particularly in music education and contemporary music. The Musical Arts faculty has developed a rich academic curriculum that pushes students to perfect their craft and train them to be educators, performers or teachers at the highest professional levels. “It’s all about the faculty,” said junior Briahna Gantt, a flautist. “They are so passionate about music. They live and breathe music. They love to talk about it nonstop [and] share their experiences with you whenever they can. I just love the excitement they bring to each class lecture, practice and performance.”

The College of Musical Arts is highly selective when it comes to offering students admission into its program, said Professor Jeffrey Showell, dean of the College of Musical Arts. The program is relatively small, with approximately 550 graduate and undergraduate students, and on average admits between 90 and 100 students each year. “Our incoming freshman class has an ACT score that are 3 points higher on average than the rest of the university,” Showell said. “We really value intellectual achievement as well as musical ability and that creates a special community among the students and really helps build a close, healthy relationship with their professors.”

The actual celebration is expected to have a plethora of festivities available for personal enjoyment. The celebration commences with a meeting of music affinity groups at 3 p.m. in the Moore Musical Arts Center. Alumni and students are encouraged to attend these receptions were they can network and connect with present and former members of their specific music department. At 5:30 p.m., spectators can enjoy a pre-concert lecture from Professor Emeritus Vince Corrigan, followed by a celebratory concert in Kobacker Hall at 6 p.m. At 9:30 p.m., the event concludes with dancing at the Clazel Theatre.

The music department will also be receiving a gift from Corrigan. “I’m really looking forward to Professor Corrigan’s lecture,” Showell said. “He just finished writing a book about the history of the college and he will be revealing it and talking about the highlights of his book. All in all, it’s going to be wonderful celebration of our program’s academic excellence and success over the last century. I’m just honored to be apart of that.”

-By Terrance Davis, BG News

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