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MUSIC DEPARTMENT

 

STUDENT PRESENTERS

Organized By Presentation Subject Material

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JORDAN ALLEN '21

MAJOR: MUSIC 

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

The Year's At The Spring By Amy Mercy Cheney Beach

As a male vocalist singing classical music, I always strive to sing big pieces with high notes and a great piano part. In the search for that song I found a song called “The Years At The Spring” by Amy Mercy Cheney Beach, who was born in 1867 and died in 1944. This song is a solo arrangement with a piano accompaniment. Beach was an American composer who had european training .Despite the popularity of the songs, there are no single-composer collections of Beach's songs. In 1890, Beach became interested in folk songs. She and several of her colleagues soon came to be the first nationalist movement in American music. Beach's contributions mentioned thirty songs inspired by folk music, including Scottish, Irish, Balkan, African-American, and Native American origins.. I chose this piece because she was a successful woman in writing art music; she composed 300 musical works including piano concertos, Symphonies and one-act operas, and in fact she was the first female to compose a symphony. This song is from a song cycle called three Browning songs that was dedicated to the Browning Society of Boston. The earliest Browning Society, and longest continuing, was constituted in 1877 .This song caught my attention because of the intensity of the lyric’s and the accompaniment starting and ending with a forte. “The Years at the Spring” by Amy Mercy Cheney Beach is amazing to sing, not only because of the dynamics and music structure but also the strong meaning of the lyrics and history.

 
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SAMANTHA BISEINERE '23

MAJOR: HEALTH SCIENCE

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

The Analysis of Music's Effectiveness in Advertising

Throughout the semester our class has been reading the textbook, Resonance: Engaging Music in Its Cultural Context, and for my project I have created another chapter that could be added. Music has become very common, and we are sometimes not even consciously aware of the various aspects of our life in which it is a huge part of, such as commercial and advertising. Since the early 1930s music has been used in commercials to influence the audiences decision. In my chapter I write about the different kinds of music you can find in commercials from various origin points. I analyze the use of classical music such as Mozart, popular music such as Jackie Wilson, and even world music such as José González, and their impacts on the effectiveness of the commercial.

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PARKER BLACK '23

MAJOR: MUSIC

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

Some Enchanted Evening

I chose Some Enchanted Evening for my presentation because musicals are a big part of American music to me and I’ve enjoyed them since I was little. While I think South Pacific as a show hasn’t aged very well besides the musical aspects it was an early example of an Integrated musical, which is where the songs are important to the plot instead of being  just a spectacle. This is important because Rodgers and Hammerstien’s works, especially South Pacific and Oklahoma are really early examples of this creative philosophy and the fact that these shows did well at the time led to a shift in how musicals were constructed and you can see the influences they had in modern musicals to this day. For this song in particular, it has a really beautiful instrumentation and I enjoy singing it because it lets me be very dramatic and move throughout a lot of my range.

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JAMES BRIAND '22

MAJOR: MUSIC EDUCATION

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

A Display of Classical Guitar Techniques

I’ve been playing the guitar for over 10 years and while for the first nine years I mainly studied jazz and rock, the past three semesters I have been studying classical guitar. I wanted to find a piece for CURCA that would be able to show some of the new classical techniques I’ve been learning and would be enjoyable to listen to. I went and talked with my guitar instructor here at WSU, John Mason, and he showed me a piece that he had recently composed called “Rainy D’Etude”. After hearing John play it and going through the piece a few times myself, I knew that this was going to be the one. Learning this piece was different from any other piece I had learned because I actually had access to the composer! Learning a piece like this requires you to learn it in parts first, work on the transitions of those parts, and then put it all together. This performance is the product of a semester’s worth of work and I really hope you enjoy it!

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MAKAYLA CAMPELO '21

MAJOR: MOVEMENT SCIENCE

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

Music and Sports

For my CURCA project, I researched and am writing a chapter that can be used in the textbook Resonances: Engaging Music in Its Cultural Context as a substitute chapter. My research I have done is on Music and Sports, something I think many college students reading this book for class will relate to and be interested in. This chapter will discuss how close of a relation music and sports have, and how music is symbolic when used for sports. One of the main topics this chapter will be focusing on is music for sport preparation for which I will be using the song We Will Rock You by Queen. Another topic focuses on music used during performance and how athletes personally respond to using music versus no music, and for this I will use the song Eye of the Tiger by Survivor. For the last main topic, we will look at how both music and sports bring together communities and emotions as well as both relating to culture, and for this I am using the Olympics ceremony theme song, since this is a song known to represent people of all parts of the world coming together to participate in sports.

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ANNALISE CRAMER '23

MAJOR: MATHEMATICS & BIOLOGY

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

Music and Alzheimer's Disease

This project is a research-based chapter on Music & Alzheimer’s Disease, meant to fit in with Resonances: Engaging Music in Its Cultural Context. Music can be used as a valuable therapy to temporarily reverse the memory-loss effects of Alzheimer's Disease and boost patients’ moods, and little training is needed to apply this tool. First, we examine the biology behind how music improves memory with a piece that is proven to improve the memory of Alzheimer’s patients who are listening: Spring by Vivaldi. Next, we see how this technique can be broadly extended to popular music such as That’s Amore by Dean Martin. Finally, we learn how to do this on your own with family and friends, with examples such as You Are My Sunshine.

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MADISON CZERNIAWSKI '21

MAJOR: ECONOMICS

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

Music and Technology: How Technology has Impacted EDM

In my Honors Music as a Social Experience course, we are writing a chapter that could be implemented into our textbook, Resonances: Engaging Music in Its Cultural Context. For this project, I’ve decided to look at the connections between music and technological advancements, specifically using examples from Electronic Dance Music (EDM) to describe this connection. Specifically, I’m looking at the progression of technology within the music industry and how the change in technology has impacted the way EDM music has been produced and received by the intended audience. Technology has become a huge part of how we do and perceive a lot of different things, including music; the increase in technological advancements has increased the reach of the music we listen to today, meaning we have access to listen to music from a wide range of music genres/styles, artists, and cultures. Technological advancements have also changed the way music has been played, recorded, and distributed throughout history, especially since the first recording devices were first used in the late 1800s. I use the following musical examples “Song of the Second Moon” by Kid Baltan and Tom Dissevelt, “Neon Lights” by Kraftwerk, and “Clarity” by Zedd to show the changes in the technology used in EDM.

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NATHAN ELL '22

MAJOR: CRIMINAL JUSTICE

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

The Use of Music in Horror Movies

For my project and presentation, I wrote a chapter that is intended to be added the textbook Resonances: Engaging Music in Its Cultural Context, which was used in my HNRS: Music As a Social Experience Class, taught by Professor Sonya Lawson. The focus of my research was The Use of Music in Horror Films and in the chapter, I discussed the techniques and "science" behind the soundtracks of horror films. The main discussion points of the chapter include descriptions of the terms tension and revulsion and how these effects can be created using music, alongisde scenes from horror films. In the chapter, I also discuss a University of California study that found links between the trends of horror music and human's "fight-or flight" primal instincts. To further discuss the topics, I chose three different examples of music to describe in detail and chart a listening guide for. These three examples are The Dream of Jacob, written by Krzysztof Penderecki , Sikiliza Kwa Wahenga (the main theme in Get Out), composed by Michael Abels, and I Got 5 On It, written by Luniz, with a redition done by Michael Abels. Each of these musical examples are vastly different in style and context is provided for the movies they are featured in and the composers who created them, in the chapter.

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JOANNA HAHNER '22

MAJOR: MUSIC

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

Overture from West Side Story

As a music major, I enjoy listening to a wide variety of music. This has led me to discover the music of West Side Story, which premiered on Broadway in 1957 and was followed by a movie version in 1961. The music was composed by Leonard Bernstein, a prominent twentieth-century American composer. For this project, I have chosen to focus on the Overture from West Side Story. The Overture is instrumental and features selections from several of the show’s songs. My presentation features a recording from the movie version of West Side Story. This performance is conducted by Johnny Green. I will be focusing on the structure, instrumentation, and melodic content of this piece.

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JOHN KOZINSKI '23

MAJOR: MUSIC EDUCATION

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

Carelessly by Norman Ellis and Nick and Charles Kenny as Sung by Billie Holiday

This is a recording from a local jazz gig that took place at the Student Prince Restaurant in Springfield, MA, not too far from where I live, that took place in January 2020 just before the lockdown. It is a song made famous by a singer. In this video, I was performing with a wonderful group of musicians from New England. For me, as a jazz guitarist, this was a wonderful opportunity to delve into the singer, Billie Holiday’s repertoire and the music of a far older time. Carelessly with music by Norman Ellis and words by Nick and Charles Kenney become famous because of Billie Holiday’s rendition from 1937. The repertoire of Billie Holiday is preferred by the wonderful singer on this recording, Robyn Lloyd, who is featured in this piece. In addition, the performance of Carelessly that is captured in this video is a great example of the continuing tradition of jazz musicians of modernizing a song from the Great American Songbook of the past. Listening closely, you can hear that the band is playing Carelessly in a more modern style than the original from 1937 both in the accompaniment and the solo improvisations. As with most jazz performances, nothing is written down. All the musicians are improvising all the accompaniments, improvisations and to a large extent, the arraignment by following the basic outline of the song on sheet music.

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TESS MCDONALD '22

MAJOR: PSYCHOLOGY

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

Music and Travel

For my CURCA Presentation, I will be discussing the inclusion of a chapter into the textbook Resonances: Engaging Music in Its Cultural Context which has been utilized heavily through an enrolled course of Music as A Social Experience. The chapter I wrote deals with the idea of music and its relation to travel. Music and Travel are two things that go together quite well and, in my presentation, I discuss three specific examples that showcase the pairing. These examples first include a folk categorized song, Home, which was written by Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros. Next will be a popular categorized song, Beautiful Day, written by U2. Finally, I wish to discuss a classically categorized song, Pastoral 6th Symphony, composed by Ludwig Beethoven. My goal with these three examples is to tie music and travel together.

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GREG O'CONNOR '22

MAJOR: MUSIC

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

Etiquette in Music

For my project I will be covering the topic of music etiquette. I have researched and experienced what proper etiquette is expected in different genres of music. This will cover etiquette from the audience as well as from the musician/s. Some genres that will be included but are not limited to being included are jazz, rock, classical, and pop. This project will inform people of how they are expected to act when at a venue listening to music.

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ERIN ST. GERMAIN '22

MAJOR: MATHEMATICS & ECONOMICS

FACULTY SPONSOR: PROFESSOR SONYA LAWSON, MUSIC

Music and Sports Collide

For my project I researched and am writing a chapter that could be used as a substitute chapter for the textbook Resonances: Engaging Music in Its Cultural Context that is used in my class. My research project is 'Music and Sports Collide' which shows how they relate both for the players of the sports and the spectators. Throughout the chapter, I discuss how the music impacts sports throughout time and how it can impact different sporting events. I use musical examples to give an idea of how music has changed for sports over time and why that is the case. The musical examples are a performance from the closing ceremony of the Rio Olympic Games, gladiator music played in the Colosseum, and Sweet Caroline. I chose to focus on ancient Roman times, Olympic Games which have been going on for a long time, and present times in sporting events. All those areas show how music has changed over time but is still relatable to sports athletes and spectators.