From the Dean

October 18, 2022
Dr. Gary Mortenson

Dear Friends,

Welcome to the new look and a new season of the Semper Pro Musica Newsletter for the School of Music! I want to thank Jenny LaPoint for her work to update the format of our eNewsletter.

This academic year we welcome the largest number of new faculty and staff in recent memory. We are also starting the school year as close to normal as things have been since the pandemic hit and disrupted every aspect of our world more than two years ago. It is amazing to watch and hear faculty and students make music close together and without masks. We pray this may continue as the academic year unfolds.

On May 26th of 2022 I attended one of the most remarkable recitals of my life. On that date, at 8:00 pm the School of Music presented the Semper Pro Musica Solo and Chamber Music Winners in Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall. The hall was filled very close to capacity. President Livingstone and Provost Brickhouse were there and many family members of our winners and many alumni and supporters of Baylor who live the New York City area were there as well. The quality of the performing was superb, and as each component of the recital concluded there was an immediate and enthusiastic standing ovation.

This is a time of tremendous activity in the School of Music and at Baylor overall. With the university's new status nationally as an R-1 university the School of Music is contributing to this elevated designation with outstanding performances, significant research and grant funding, and a global presence that extends across four continents. With a packed schedule of events this fall I want to highlight two School of Music milestones the first is the "passing of the baton" from Maestro Stephen Heyde to Maestro Harth-Bedoya as he begins his tenure on the podium as Director of Orchestral Studies with the Baylor Symphony Orchestra. The second milestone is the return of the Baylor Wind Ensemble to perform at 76th annual Midwest Clinic International Band and Orchestra Conference to be held December 19-22 at McCormick Place in Chicago, Illinois. This truly international conference is an amazing opportunity for Dr. Eric Wilson and the Baylor Wind Ensemble to perform before one of the most sophisticated audiences in the music world.

Finally, on the academic side of the house I want to point out and commend the work of Drs. Amy Fleming, Ed Taylor and Horace Maxile, on the work they have done on a Musicianship Project that has created a free textbook and materials for all our music students. These free materials cover all five sections of Musicianship as part of the Affordable Course Materials Fellows Program. They were asked to share their work at a Baylor Seminar for Excellence in Teaching hosted by the Academy of Teaching and Learning. The work of these three dedicated theory professors gives our students an invaluable tool that is customized to provide them with the best theory experience and learning possible.

Enjoy this issue of Semper Pro Musica and please stay in touch!

Musically yours,

Gary Mortenson, Dean

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