North Carolina

Four must-see music performances at UNCSA this spring

With over 30 School of Music performances this semester, it can be difficult to decide which ones to attend. From operas to jazz ensembles, guest artists to symphonies, the school works hard to curate a season that will appeal to any music lover.

We sat down with some faculty members to ask them what performance(s) they are most looking forward to in the upcoming semester. Here are the exciting experiences they selected – in chronological order.

Celebrating UNCSA Woodwinds: Baroque to Contemporary, February 4

Oboe teacher Jaren Atherholt is looking forward to the Woodwind Celebration concert the most. “I’m looking forward to playing with my colleagues and sharing so much great music with our UNCSA and Winston Salem community,” adds Atherholt. This concert – which will feature Atherholt alongside faculty members Robert Young, Tadeu Coelho and Oskar Espina Ruiz, and guest artist Jessica Kunttu – is also a welcome and celebration of new bassoon faculty member Stephanie Patterson.

UNCSA Woodwind Faculty

UNCSA Woodwind Faculty members, left to right: Robert Young, Jaren Atherholt, Oskar Espina Ruiz, Stephanie Patterson, and Tadeu Coelho / Photo: Wayne Reich

Atherholt explains that the program is diverse and exciting, featuring mostly music by women composers, including Sonata Terza, Op. 16 (1693)” by Isabella Leonarda, “Duo Sonata for Two Bassoons” by Sofia Gubaidulina, “Trio Toccata” by Valerie Coleman and “Brokenvention Trio” by Alyssa Morris.

UNCSA Chamber Music Festival, March 14 & 18

This March, the School of Music presents the spring edition of the UNCSA Chamber Music Festival, featuring two concerts featuring faculty, students, alumni and guest artists. Horn faculty Maria Serkin, one of the featured faculty members, is particularly looking forward to this event, where she will perform Beethoven’s Sextet in E flat major, Op. 81b on Tuesday, March 14.

Maria Serkin

Horn Faculty Maria Serkin performs at the UNCSA Wind Ensemble Fall Concert with music by Omar Thomas. / Photo: Wayne Reich

“This is a faculty-student collaboration and my final opportunity to perform with my student Elijah Barclift,” explains Serkin. She adds that she hopes to one day play with Barclift again when “he returns to UNCSA as a valued alumnus for a guest concert.” The violist is one of the festival’s guest artists Tatyana Masurenkocellist Peter Wiley and alumnus composer Tyson Davis.

UNCSA Percussion Ensemble, March 26

An exciting program showcasing the talented percussion students, this spring concert is bittersweet for professor John Beck. “This will be my final performance as the leader of the UNCSA Percussion Ensemble,” explains Beck.


Percussion student performing at the Jazz Ensemble 2022 concert with Jon Metzger. / Photo: Wayne Reich

“After 25 years of studio teaching, I am transitioning to a new role at UNCSA as liaison and program coordinator in our new partnership with the Intergenerational Center for Arts and Wellness, scheduled to open next fall at Senior Services of Winston-Salem. ”

UNCSA Symphony Orchestra with Guillermo Figueroa, April 29

Beck also adds the symphony orchestra’s final performance at the Stevens Center before it closes for major renovations as an upcoming highlight. He is particularly excited about Hector Berlioz’s “Symphonie Fantastique”, which will present “two drums and church bells in the last movement”.

symphony orchestra

Performance by the symphony orchestra in October 2022 with conductor Robert Franz. / Photo: Wayne Reich

This symphony orchestra will be led by guest conductor and violinist Guillermo Figueroa and will also perform Ernesto Coredero’s Violin Concerto and Jennifer Higdon’s Blue Cathedral. Figueroa is a Grammy Award-winning artist who serves as Principal Conductor of the Santa Fe Symphony Orchestra & Chorus, among other prestigious positions.

Purchase your tickets to these experiences and discover more performances—created and performed by talented students and world-class faculty, respected alumni and acclaimed guest artists—by visiting the UNCSA Performance Calendar.

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