Current undergraduate courses
Bluegrass music is a 20th-century amalgam of popular and traditional music styles, emphasizing vocal performance and instrumental improvisation, that coalesced in the 1940s in the American Southeast. Through performance, this ensemble will highlight many of the influences and traditions that bluegrass comprises, including ballads, breakdowns, “brother duets,” gospel quartets, Irish-style medleys, “modal” instrumentals, “old-time” country, popular song, and rhythm and blues, among many possible others. Though experienced players will have plenty of opportunities to improvise, participants need not have played bluegrass before. The ensemble should include fiddle, 5-string banjo, steel-string acoustic guitar, mandolin, resophonic guitar (Dobro®), upright double bass.
This course is for beginning acoustic or electric guitar students.
This course offers informal performance opportunities on a weekly basis as a way of exploring guitar solo, duo, and ensemble repertoire. The course will seek to improve sight-reading abilities and foster a thorough knowledge of the guitar literature. The class is recommended for students interested in classical guitar.
The Cygnus Ensemble is a contemporary music ensemble in residence at the College. Along with presenting concerts of new music in the Concert Series, the members of the ensemble work individually with instrumental students and participate in readings of new works by student composers.