The music program a Keene State College proves to be a rigorous four years for music majors, but can be as a rewarding experience as any.
KSC senior Rebecca Wilbur performed in the Junior and Senior Voice Major Recital on Sunday, Nov. 19, and thought that her performance and the performances as a whole went very well.
“I think it was awesome for us all to come together as juniors and senior who have gone through this program together,” Wilbur said. “Just to show what we have done and show the hard work we have put in.”
All of the featured vocal majors performed two to three from their repertoire, which Wilbur said the voice majors had spent the last three to four years building up. The pieces performed were very varied in style and composition.
“Most of us just tried to pick a variety of music for this performance,”Wilbur said. “You probably noticed a lot of us did musical theatre pieces and some classical pieces.”
Wilbur said the biggest struggle in preparing for this performance was getting everybody together to practice, as many of those involved had extremely busy schedules leading up to the performance.
Senior Amy Lesieur performed in five shows in the days before the performance, closing one show just the day before the Voice Recital Performance, as she was a part of the KSC play, “Company.” She said her voice was “a little tired” following all off the performances, but she was happy with how her performance went.
“It feels good to just cap the semester off,” Lesieur said.
M music Llecturer and Ddirector of the Oopera Pprogram at KSC Dr. Matthew Leese, attended the performance and was very pleased and impressed in the students he saw.
“For those students who were just in a full run of a music theatre production, to then sing classical repertoire the next day, I think it shows how smart they are with their technique and how much they’ve grown and developed as musicians.” Leese said.
Although this performance was for juniors and seniors of the program, Leese said the program itself can have a steep learning curve for first years starting out. For those who make it through the program, they then know how to pace themselves, he said.
“A lot of our students we encourage to do both singing and some instrumental work,” Leese said. “so this time of year they usually have between one and three performances a week, of completely different stuff.”
Lesieur had some parting advice for younger vocal majors, to help them get through the intensive program, as numbers sometimes dwindle from first-years to graduating seniors in the major.
“Don’t take on too much. Don’t say yes to everything, you can say no if somebody wants you to be in a group of if somebody wants you to be in a gig, you can say no and take some time for yourself.” Lesieur said. “Don’t tire yourself out, because it’s real easy with this major.”
Leese echoed this advice saying that music students “learn how to be smart about what they are saying yes to.”
“It’s a really tough lesson as a performer,” Leese said.
Meridith King can be contacted at email@example.com