Department Achievements

Fall 2015

-Dr. ChoEun Lee is going to make her Carnegie Hall Debut this October. Among her concert program, she will be premiering a recent work for Saxophone, Soprano, and Piano, by a living American composer, John Plant.

Winter & Spring 2015

-Dr. John Russell conducted the CSUSB Chamber Singers in a performance celebrating the life of Danny Ramadan at Santos Manuel Student Union Event Center.He was appointed to the board of the American Choral Director’s Association (ACDA) as a member of the Research & Publications Committee. Early in the 2015 school year, Russell performed as a tenor chorister for interest session “Looking over Handel’s Shoulder at Messiah,” by Helmuth Rilling at the national conference of ACDA in Salt Lake City. He also performed as a tenor soloist for interest session “Sound/Resonance,” by Dr. Amanda Quist at the national conference of ACDA in Salt Lake City March 2015. He was a guest soloist and master class instructor for Baroque Introspective Conference at Pepperdine University. Performances included Buxtehude’s Jesu Membra Nostri and arias by J.S. Bach. Dr. John Russell was also a guest lecturer for choral conducting seminar at Baldwin Wallace University and he conducted the Riverside Unified School District chamber choirs in a performance of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana for their Masterworks concert.

-Dr. Stacey Fraser directed Bernstein's Candide for Pasadena Opera at A Noise Within Theatre, in Pasadena, CA. Performances were sold out. Fraser also directed the Bizet/Brook Carmen for Opera on Tap San Francisco at Z Below Space, San Francisco. She Produced and performed on the inaugural concert of the contemporary music ensemble The Lotusflower New Music Project at the Pacific Asia Museum in Pasadena. This concert featured some of the top new music players in the LA area, including the Grammy winning percussionist, Nick Terry, and Grammy nominated percussionist, Justin Dehart. Dr. Fraser performed with the critically acclaimed Taiwanese ensemble, The Little Giant Chinese Chamber Orchestra. She produced and directed the West Coast premiere of La Curandera by Robert Xavier Rodriguez for CSUSB OPera Theatre. During the summer of 2015, she will sing the role of Frida in Rodriguez's Concert Suite from Frida for Kazan Co-Op Theatre in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

-Dr. Lucy Lewis took a group of string students (Bailey Wilkins, Yezenia Cruz, Loreen Mendez, Gabriela Diones, and Janine Leslie), to the American String Teachers Association National Conference in Salt Lake City, UT. These students assisted Dr. Lewis in presenting a session entitled "The ABC's of Chamber Music" that was very well received. These students also had the opportunity to attend masterclasses, performances, exhibits, and a variety of educational sessions on a wide array of topics that included string music education, advocacy, program marketing and recruitment, strategies for structuring effective practice sessions and rehearsals, instrument-specific sessions, etc. Dr. Lewis also took the CSUSB Chamber Orchestra on tour to Los Angeles. Highlights of this tour included performing for students at John Marshall High School and Glendale Adventist Academy, getting to observe a rehearsal of the Los Angeles Philharmonic at Walt Disney Hall with Gustavo Dudamel conducting, and attending an evening performance of the Los Angeles Philharmonia. The LA Phil performed Ravel's Le tombeau de Couperin, a world premiere of "True Fire" by Kaija Saariaho (Gerald Finley, baritone soloist), Ravel's Concerto for the Left Hand (Jean-Yves Thibaudet, soloist), and lastly, Ravel's Boléro, all under the direction of Gustavo Dudamel. Dr. Lewis, Prof. Ana Maria Maldonado, and Dr. ChoEun Lee performed a trio recital at the Palm Desert Campus of California State University San Bernardino. The program included works by Tchaikovsky, Beethoven, and Piazzolla, and was extremely well received. They also performed a trio recital at a private residence in Redlands, CA. The program included works by Tchaikovsky, Beethoven, and Piazzolla.

-Dr. Todd Johnson, CSUSB music faculty member and department chair, adjudicated for the California Percussive Arts Society's second annual competitive festival on May 1. The festival was held at Fresno State University and included middle school, high school, and college percussion soloists and ensembles from all over California. Participating universities included, among others, Fresno State, Chapman University, Cal State Fullerton, and San Joaquin Delta College. This year, Dr. Johnson judged all levels of solo timpani playing. At the beginning of the school year the CSUSB Percussion Ensemble, under Dr. Todd Johnson's direction, performed for the Lakeside High School Day of Percussion in Lake Elsinore. Other participants included the San Diego State University Percussion Ensemble, the Mt. San Jacinto College Jazz Band, and the Lakeside Panther Drumline. Clinicians included Gregory Cohen, principal percussionist with the San Diego Symphony, and Dr. Johnson. He presented a clinic on conga playing techniques in Afro-Cuban music. Sophomore percussionist Dennis Tran performed for Mr. Cohen's percussion solo masterclass.

-On May 9 CSUSB's Music Department, hosted the Southern California site for the California Music Educators Association's state solo and ensemble festival. The event brought approximately 40 select middle and high school musicians to campus to perform for adjudication. The event's hosts included Armalyn De La O, CSUSB faculty member and Southeastern Section President of CMEA, music faculty members John Russell, Erik Jester, and Todd Johnson, and the Coyote Music Society, a music student service organization.

Summer 2014 & Fall 2014

-The music department is excited to announce that the collegiate chapter at CSUSB has been officially approved by the MTNA (Music Teachers National Association) / CAPMT (California Association of Professional Music Teachers) Board! The music department is very honored and proud to be a part of the MTNA and CAPMT.

-Dr. Stacey Fraser had solo performances at the National Theatre of Taipei and the Kennedy Center in Washington DC. She also released an album for the Viennese label, ein Klang Records.

-Dr. John Russell performed as the tenor soloist for performances of W.A. Mozart Requiem and Solemn Vespers with the LA Chamber Choir and Orchestra at Walt Disney Concert Hall. He was appointed to the board of the California American Choral Director’s Association (CA-ACDA) as a Regional Representative. Russell served on the faculty for the 2014 San Diego Summer Choral Festival conducting the SDSCF. He was appointed as Music Director position with the San Diego Master Chorale.

In fall, Dr. Russell performed as tenor soloist with the Pepperdine University Symphony Orchestra and Chamber Singer’s in a performance of Tegel Passion by Pepperdine University Composer Lincoln Hanks. He appeared on professional album recording of J.S. Bach’s B Minor Mass as tenor soloist with the Bach Collegium San Diego. Later in the year he appeared on professional album recording Fair & Bright with the San Diego Pro Arte Voices. He also performed as tenor soloist with the San Diego Symphony Orchestra in F.J. Haydn’s Paukenmesse, conducted by Jahja Ling. Dr. Russell concluded a very successfull year by conducting the Centennial Chorus in a performance commemorating the 100th Anniversary of the Spreckels Organ Pavillion in Balboa Park.

-Dr. ChoEun Lee was honored with the Grace B. Jackson Prize in Excellence by the Tanglewood Music Festival in Fall 2014.

Spring 2014

-Dr. Jocelyn Hua-Chen Chang, Director of Keyboard Studies, invitation to perform at the Opening Concert of the Beverly Hills International Music Festival.

-CSUSB Chamber Singers performs on a program with world-renowned choral ensemble Chanticleer in Palm Desert. Singers also receive master class with members of Chanticleer.

CSUSB Chamber Singers host Choral Night as part of Music Week at CSUSB and invite two other great area choral ensembles as collaborators: The College Singers from Victor Valley College and the Chamber Singers from Moreno Valley College.

-Dr. John Russell performed as a tenor soloist with the San Diego State Symphony Orchestra in a performance of Benjamin Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings.

-The CSUSB Chamber Singers performed for All-Britten Concert in San Diego receiving superb reviews.