Fredonia's music students gain experience in all kinds of performance media - large and small ensembles, solo, and theatrical. Large ensembles include four bands, two orchestras, four choirs, guitar ensemble, percussion ensemble, and saxophone ensemble. Various string quartets, brass and woodwind quintets and other chamber groups provide invaluable training in chamber music.
Solo opportunities are found in a weekly Recital Seminar (required for all students enrolled in studio instruction), twice-per-semester School of Music recitals, and the required performance recitals. Singers have the opportunity to audition for roles in annual, fully-staged productions of operas, musicals, and opera scenes.
Advanced players seeking professional orchestral experience may audition for three professional orchestras in the area: the Western New York Chamber Orchestra, and the Erie Philharmonic. In addition, students from the School of Music have appeared in opera performances at renowned summer programs in nearby Artpark and Chautauqua Institution.
Participation in ensembles is required in all the School of Music curricula. For information about the ensemble requirement by curriculum, see the University Catalog or the summary here.
Director: Paula Holcomb
The Fredonia Wind Ensemble consists of the most outstanding wind and percussion players at the college. Dedicated to presenting the finest repertoire from all musical periods to its audiences, it draws from contemporary and historical wind works, orchestral transcriptions, as well as standard band literature. The size and instrumentation of the Wind Ensemble is dictated by the demands of the music being performed, thus affording a more comprehensive experience for both audience and performer.
Director: Carl Mazzio
The Wind Symphony is the "second band" at the School of Music, and membership is by audition only. While a large percentage of students are music majors, a number of very talented non-music majors have achieved membership. Repertoire is drawn from a variety of styles and musical periods, carefully chosen in order to stimulate a high degree of musical growth for each member.
Director: John Maguda
The Concert Band is the "third band" at the School of Music, and membership is by audition only. While a large percentage of students are music majors, a number of very talented non-music majors have achieved membership. Repertoire is drawn from a variety of styles and musical periods, carefully chosen in order to stimulate a high degree of musical growth for each member.
Director: Carl Mazzio
The All College Band is an unique mixture of music majors, students from all academic disciplines, and community members. This combination allows music majors to refine their professional skills while providing others an opportunity to continue making music at a high level. All-College Band performs music from the traditional band and wind ensemble repertoire representing many genres and stylistic periods.
Director: David Rudge
The College Symphony, under the direction of David Rudge, is one of the premiere ensembles in the School of Music. Open to players by audition only, it maintains high standards of playing and performs several times each semester. Besides accompanying solo competition winners, and the Hillman Opera, it presents orchestral masterworks from all periods of music. Recent performances have included performances of symphonies and other major symphonic works by Beethoven, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, Dvorak, Respighi and Bernstein.
Director: David Rudge
The Chamber Orchestra, conducted by David Rudge, is a small ensemble of 20-30 players dedicated to performing works written from the Baroque period to the present day. The players are chosen from the College Symphony by audition or by invitation only. This is an "honors" group, and is a touring ensemble.
Director: Gerald Gray
The College Choir studies and performs major choral works in addition to standard sacred and secular music. It has performed at Philharmonic Hall, Lincoln Center in New York City and with Buffalo, Utica, Syracuse, and Rochester philharmonic orchestras. The College Choir is a touring ensemble.
Director: Vernon Huff
The Fredonia Women's Choir is a select ensemble comprised of music majors and talented singers from throughout the college. A thirty-three voice choir, the Women perform a broad spectrum of repertoire ranging from early Renaissance motets through major works of the nineteenth and twentieth century. The Women's Choir is devoted to presenting performances of the highest quality both on campus and throughout the community.
Director: Gerald Gray
The Fredonia Chamber Choir is the premier choral ensemble of SUNY Fredonia consisting of 24 singers auditioned from 170 voice majors. The Choir tours annually and serves as musical and cultural ambassadors for SUNY Fredonia School of Music. The Fredonia Chamber Choir specializes in advanced choral repertoire while offering additional music for special events and outreach performances.
Director: Barbara Brinson
University Chorus is the largest choral ensemble on campus, ranging from 130-215 singers each semester. Members include Fredonia faculty and people from the community-at-large as well as music majors (both vocal and instrumental) and students from disciplines other than music. A wide variety of music is experienced; for example, this group has sung selections from the larger choral repertoire, a French chanson, spirituals, American folk songs, music for double chorus, and a Nigerian folk song. No audition is required for membership.
Director: Kay H. Stonefelt
Membership is determined by the percussion instructor. Repertoire is selected from contemporary works for this medium.
Director: Bruce Johnstone
The Jazz Ensemble performs a wide range of jazz styles and often performs in smaller break-out groups that focus on specific genres. There is also a Vocal Jazz group. The curricular Jazz Ensemble(s) is often engaged to perform at off-campus venues for special events.
Contact: Julie Newell
Provides experience with a variety of types of full-scale musical theatre works. These productions are fully staged and are usually accompanied by the College Symphony Orchestra. Recent productions, presented in cooperation with the theatre arts department, include H.M.S. Pinafore, Guys and Dolls, Mozart's Marriage of Figaro, and Floyd's Susanna.
Contact: Susan Royal
The Flute Ensemble performes a wide range of repertoire composed or arranged for up to 12 flutists. Concertizes regularly in the Western New York region.
Contact: Jim Piorkowski
The Guitar Ensemble consists of approximately 12 guitar majors and is directed by a student conductor. The Guitar Quartet is a select membership which performs a technically difficult level of repertoire. Both ensembles perform transcriptions and original music made available from the Buffalo Guitar Quartet Library. Both groups are touring ensembles.
The Piano Ensemble provides systematic study in piano sight-reading. Organized instruction in the art of accompanying is combined with a variety of assignments designed to develop proficiency by experience.
Contact: Wildy Zumwalt
Studies and performs original and transcribed works for various combinations of saxophones and appears frequently both on and off campus.
Provide students with the opportunity to learn and perform the chamber ensemble literature. Typically these ensembles consist of woodwind trios, quartets and quintets; string trios, quartets and quintets; and brass quintets. Faculty coaches assist students with problems of ensemble and interpretation.