About the UK School of Music

UK School of Music

There are almost 400 music majors in the School of Music, including more than 150 graduate students. The more than 50 full-time and 15 part-time faculty members are recognized for excellence in teaching, performance, and research. They are leaders in their disciplines. With a low faculty-to-student ratio, the School of Music provides personal attention with small classes and excellent private applied instruction.

The School has achieved awards and national recognition for high-caliber education in opera, choral and instrumental music performance, as well as for music education, music therapy, composition, theory and music history. Our faculty has gained national and international prominence in their respective fields.

The UK School of Music is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM). Visit the NASM website for more information about accreditation.

Performing Groups/Ensembles

Our performing groups have won acclaim in competitions, performances alongside world-class artists, and in music journals. Students have the opportunity to perform in the Wildcat Marching Band, Orchestra, Concert Band, Wind Symphony, Percussion Ensembles, Jazz Ensembles, Choral Ensembles, UK Opera Theatre and other ensembles.

Please feel free to look through our site to find out more!

Award Winning Traditions

World Equestrian Games Opening Ceremony

Over 300 students and faculty in the UK School of Music performed during the 3-hour ceremony broadcast internationally: UKSO, UKOT, UK Choirs, UK Percussion, UK Trumpets (Sept 25, 2010).

Brass Students

  • Phillip Chase Hawkins (M.M. Trumpet) was awarded First Place in the National Trumpet Competition Graduate Solo Division (Spring 2012)
  • The BlueBrass Quintet, (Eric Millard and Rui Li, trumpets; Megan McMahon, horn; Josh Daragavell, trombone; and Mike McMahon, tuba) took third prize in the College division of the 16th annual Macauley Chamber Music Competition (March 2012)
  • Phillip Chase Hawkins (M.M. Trumpet) won second place in the Graduate Solo Division of the National Trumpet Competition (2011). Six members of the UK Trumpet Studio were among 48 finalists from across the country for an unprecedented representation at this Trumpet Competition (2011)
  • Six UK trumpet students advanced to the semifinals of the National Trumpet Competition (2011). Out of 58 students to advance nation wide, UK had 6.
  • Julian Kaplan, UK Trumpet Studio Class of 2010, was appointed Second Trumpet of the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra and was runner up for the Associate Principal Trumpet position with the Atlanta Symphony (2010).
  • Alexandre Ferreira, DMA in Trombone performance at UK, is the recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship (2009).
  • Elizabeth McDonald, Concerto Winner, Aspen Summer Music Festival (2008)
  • John-Morgan Bush, Second Prize in the international solo competition of the 40th International Horn Society Annual Symposium in Denver. This award was the top honor in student category since the panel decided not to award the first prize (2008)
  • Elizabeth McDonald, First Place in the Artist Division Tuba Solo Competition at the Leonard Falcone International Tuba-Euphonium Festival (2007)

Jazz Students

  • Five UK Jazz students won three prestigious DownBeat magazine 31st Annual Student Music Awards: David Harper (only college winner of the Classical Soloist category); Angie Ortega (co-winner of the Jazz Vocalist category); and UK Mega-Sax with David Harper, Joe Carucci, Chris Strange, and Brad Grable (co-winners in the College Jazz category) (2008)
  • Angie Ortega, winner of the Big Phat Jam Online competition (2007)

Keyboard Students

  • Fernando Vago Santana (MM) won the State Level of the MTNA Competition. October 2012.
  • Robert Bosworth - Winner of the Bluegrass KMTA Solo Piano Collegiate Competition. October 2012.
  • Robert Bosworth, sophomore undergraduate in piano, First Place Winner at the KMTA Bluegrass Performance Competition (2011)
  • UK Piano Duo Robert Bosworth and Maris Deddens, undergraduates in piano, First Place Winner at the KMTA Bluegrass Performance Competition (2011)
  • Seunghee Lee, DMA piano, Carnegie Hall Debut recital (Weil Recital Hall), December 2010
  • Kim Scott, DMA, piano, Fulbright Award for research in Finland (2010)
  • Clint Davis, piano performance major, was selected to present the 15th annual Edward T. Breathitt Undergraduate Lectureship in the Humanities at UK (January 2009).
  • Tamara Bustamante (DMA) and Seunghee Lee (DMA) performed and taught at the Second International Piano festival in Vitoria, Brazil (May 2009)
  • Seunghee Lee (DMA student, piano) - was a semi-finalist for the International Grieg Society Festival and Competition at Rollins College, FL. (October 2008)
  • Jennifer Ku (DMA, piano) - Carnegie Hall Debut recital (Weil Recital Hall) Nov. 2008
  • Zachary Ullery was appointed Assistant Organist/Choirmaster at the American Cathedral, Paris, France  (2008)
  • Tamara Bustamante (DMA) and Paula Galama (DMA) were selected to participate in the Prague International Master Classes (July 2007)
  • Kim Scott, piano, American Scandinavian Foundation Award for research in Finland (2007)
  • Laura Goepper, First Place Winner at the KMTA Bluegrass Young Artist Piano Competition (2007)
  • UK Piano Duo Laura Goepper and James Friley, First Place at the KMTA Bluegrass College Piano Ensemble Competition (2007)

Music Education Students

  • Greg Springer (Ph.D. Music Education), was the winner of the Best Paper Award for the CMS South Central Regional Conference Competition (March 2012).
  • Nicola Mason (Ph.D. Music Education) presented the pilot study of her dissertation, The effects of Orff Schulwerk instruction on rhythmic achievement in middle school band, at the Ohio and Kentucky Music Educators Conference (February 2012).
  • Nicola Mason (Ph.D. Music Education) and Greg Springer (Ph.D. Music Education) presented, An Innovative Approach to a Traditional Music Course:  Transforming the Arts Curriculum to Meet the Needs of 21st Century Students, at the 37th International Social Theory, Politics, and the Arts Conference (October 2011).
  • Nicola Mason (Ph.D. Music Education) presented at the International Symposium, Global Connections in Orff Schulwerk: Reflections from Kentucky (June 2011)
  • Todd Anderson (Ph.D. Music Education) received a national grant from the Dalcroze Society of America for advance study in Music Education (2011)
  • Christine Carucci (Ph.D. Music Education) was awarded a position with the Perpich Center Arts Integration project http://www.pcae.k12.mn.us/ in Minneapolis, MN (2010)
  • Christine Carucci (Ph.D. Music Education) gave a presentation on the music of American composer Marvin Roth at the International Double Reed Society Conference at Provo, UT (July 2008)

Music Therapy Students

  • 2013 regional American Music Therapy Research Award

Music Theory & Composition Students

  • Adam Sovkoplas’s (D.M.A. Composition) Saxophone Quartet No. 1: A Slice of Silverstein was performed at the College Music Society 25th Pacific Northwest Regional Conference March 16-17, 2012 at Capilano University in North Vancouver, British Columbia; Also his “Sorrow” was performed at the CMS - South Central Chapter Regional Conference at East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma (March 1-3, 2012) andTom Bombadil was selected for performance on the College Music Society-PSW Chapter’s Regional Conference (February 17-18, 2012). In addition Tom Bombadil won the Magnum Opus Competition and will be performed in Kingsport, TN, 5 May 2012;His “Heritage Suite” for octet was selected for inclusion as part of the Lexington Philharmonic’s New Music Experiment (February 2012)
  • Ben Norton (undergraduate composition student) has his Woodwind Quintet No. 9 selected for performance part of the Lexington Philharmonic’s New Music Experiment (January 2012)
  • Jason Hober (Ph.D. candidate) presented his paper ""A Methodological Approach to 'Synthesizing' Pitch-Class Sets: Adjacent Subset Vectors and Elliott Carter Synthesis Subset Vectors" at the Florida State University Music Theory Forum on January 14 (2012)
  • Jennifer Salamone (M.A. candidate) presented a paper entitled "Odd Man Out: The Relevance of 'Verrathene Liebe' in Schumann's op. 40" at the Florida State University Music Theory Forum on January 14 (2012)
  • Adam Sovkoplas’s (D.M.A. Composition) composition for organ, Passacagliations in D, performed at the Christian Fellowship of Art Music Composers Regional Conference at Nyack College in Nyack, New York (November 2011).
  • Jay Crutcher, Ph. D. Student in Music Theory, has had his film score for Beneath the Rainbow Bridge accepted in the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, http://sbiff.org/. The festival is highly respected and carries with it points for Academy Award consideration.
  • Jason Hobert, Ph. D. Student in Music Theory, has had his paper "Classifications and Designations of Metric Modulations in the Music of Elliott Carter" accepted for the annual meeting of the Music Theory Society of New York State (April 2011).
  • Enoch Jacobus (Ph. D. Student in Music Theory) has had a paper, “Toward a Modern 'Affektenlehre' in Music of Film and Television” accepted for the International Conference of the Society for Music Analysis, held jointly with the Seventh International Conference on Music Since 1900 at Lancaster University, United Kingdom (28-31 July 2011) and another "Circular Saws and Doughnuts: A Speculative Theory of Parsimonious Seventh-Chord Relationships," accepted for the Florida State University Music Theory Conference (January 2011)
  • David O'Fallon (D.M.A. Composition) had the first section of his latest piece "Samhain Suite" premiered by the Lafayette High School Orchestra strings in Lexington on October 28, 2010. Also, the Wichita High School East Symphony Orchestra is scheduled to play, "Legend," his first published pedagogical composition. In addition, one of his pieces has been selected for performance by an ensemble the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago (2010)
  • Adam Sovkoplas’s (D.M.A. Composition) Marimba Sonata No. 1 for three performers on one five-octave marimba was performed at the SCI Region VI conference (March 2010). His Sonata for Saxophone and Piano was performed at the SCI Region V Conference at Augustana College in October 2010, and his Saxocaphony for solo sax (SATB) with piano accompaniment received its world premiere at the NACUSA (National Association of Composers, USA) Texas Conference (February 2010)
  • Rachel Nozny (Masters student in Music Theory) presented a professional paper at the annual meeting of the Rocky Mountain Music Theory Society, (April 2009)

Musicology & Ethnomusicology Students

  • Yawen Ludden (Ph.D. Musicology) received a Fulbright award to China to research the Beijing Opera during the Cultural Revolution. (April 2010) and presented a paper at the 55th Annual Meeting of the Society for Ethnomusicology in Los Angeles, CA (November 2010)
  • Erica Rumbley  (Ph.D. Musicology) won the award for the best student paper at the College Music Society's Mid-Atlantic Chapter Meeting, held in March at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC (2010)
  • Kevin Kehrberg (Ph.D. Musicology) received a Dissertation Year Fellowship from the UK Graduate School (2009) and won an Appalachian Research Fellowship at Berea College (2007). Kehrberg also received the Longyear Fellowship (2008), the James S. Brown Award for Research on Appalachia (2008), and the 2008 Endowed Doctoral Fellowship from the UK Association of Emeriti Faculty. Kehrberg published an article on gospel music research in The Bulletin of the Society for American Music (Summer 2009)His article on Albert E. Brumley appeared in The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History and Culture (Little Rock, 2008). Other paper presentations include the Society for American Music annual conference (2009) and the International Association for the Study of Popular Music biennial conference (2009) in Liverpool, England.
  • Jeffrey Daniel Jones (Ph.D. Musicology) presented a professional paper at the ECHO conference at UCLA (2009). He has four articles in the Dictionary of Composers and Musicians of the Twentieth Century.
  • Paige Lush, Musicology, presented a paper “Between Them and Savagery: Native American Music and Musicians on the Chautauqua Circuits, 1904-1932” at the annual meeting of the Society for American Music, Denver, CO (March 2009)
  • Nikos Pappas, (Ph.D. Musicology), won the dissertation completion fellowship from the ACLS/Mellon Foundation and the Dena Epstein Award from the Music Library Association. He has also received two Reese Fellowships, one from the American Bibliographic Society and the second from the American Antiquarian Society (2008)
  • Eric Strother (Ph.D. Musicology) won Appalachian Research Fellowships at Berea College (2008)
  • Jennifer Matthews (Ph.D. Musicology), has been awarded a grant by the Byrne Foundation of the University of Notre Dame to conduct research for her dissertation on the songs of Randy Newman
  • Russell Kahmann, (Ph.D. Music Theory), presented a professional paper at the annual meeting of Music Theory Society Midwest, May, 2008
  • Yawen Ludden, (Ph.D. Musicology), presented research related to culture and opera at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Ethnomusicology at Wesleyan University, at the 13th International Conference of the European Foundation for Chinese Music Research at Bard College, and lectured at the Shanghai Normal University. Her paper proposal ("Music, Culture, and the Cultural Revolution: From Beijing Opera to Model Opera") has been accepted for presentation at the national AMS meeting in Philadelphia (2009)
  • Laura Pita (Ph.D. Musicology) was invited to lecture on Caribbean music at Truman State University, and published an edition of the piano music of Teresa Carreno in collaboration with Juan Francisco Sans. She is writing four articles for the New Grove Dictionary of Music.
  • Ann Niren (Ph.D. Musicology) has an article in the new Dictionary of Composers and Musicians of the Twentieth Century.
  • Paige Lush (Ph.D. Musicology) published an article on Native American music in Americana: The Journal of American Popular Culture (2008)
  • Marshall Pinto (Ph.D. Musicology) presented professional papers on the music of Brazil at the Symposium on Latin American Choral Music (2008)
  • Tedrin Blair Lindsay, Ph.D. in Musicology, won the 2007-2008 Kentucky Arts Educator Award from the National Society of Arts and Letters (2008)
  • Nikos Pappas, (Ph.D. Musicology), was the first doctoral student from a southern university in the last twenty years to win the prestigious American Musicological Society 50 Fellowship (2007)

Percussion Students

  • Since 1994, University of Kentucky percussion students have been selected as finalists in the Percussive Arts Society International Solo Competition a total of nine times, finishing in first place five times, a record achievement matched by no other institution.
  • Alex Harmon, senior BM, performed Jim Casella’s work “Prime Ordinals” at “Focus Day” during the Percussive Arts Society International Convention, Indianapolis, IN (2009)
  • Brian Archinal, one of only fifteen musicians from around the globe selected for the Northeastern University Fusion Arts Exchange (NU-FAX), an educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (2008)
  • Danny Hawkins, MM Student, won First Place in the Collegiate Division Solo Marimba Competition at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention, Austin, TX (2008)
  • Andy Bliss, DMA student, performed with his chamber group “Base4” at Focus Day “Paukenzeit: Celebrating the Solo Timpanist” at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention (PASIC) in Columbus, October 2007. He also presented “20th Century Blacksmith: David Lang and the Forging of the Anvil Chorus” a poster presentation (2007)
  • Tim Wilburn and Davy Anderson were accepted as participants in Music 07, A Festival of New Music, The University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music (2007)
  • Brian Archinal was accepted in the residency program for the Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, North Adams, MA (2007)
  • Davy Anderson was accepted into the Summer Institute for Contemporary Performance Practice (SICPP) at the New England Conservatory of Music, Boston, MA (2007)
  • Colin Campbell received an “Outstanding Soloist” award at the 40th Annual Elmhurst College Jazz Festival” (2007)

Strings Students

  • The Verdi String Quartet, (Daniel Brier and Kyle Van Arsdalen, violins; Ivan Ugorich, viola; and Christopher Erickson, cello) took first place in the college division of the 16th annual Macauley Chamber Music Competition (March 2012)
  • Ricardo Saeb, Masters in Guitar, was selected to perform a concert in the prestigious International Guitar Encounter in Queretaro, Mexico (2011)
  • Verdi String Quartet, Second Place in the collegiate division of the 15th annual Macauley Chamber Music Competition (2010)
  • Niles Quartet, First Place in the college division of the Macauley Chamber Competition (2008), invited to study at the Banff Festival, and coached with members of the Juilliard String Quartet in New York (2008)

Voice Students

  • Since 1995 the UK School of Music vocal program has produced seventeen Metropolitan Opera winners at the district level, four at the regional level, and one at the national.
  • Two UK voice students took honors at the 2012 National Opera Association Vocal Competition. Senior Reginald Smith Jr. took first place in the competition's scholarship division and graduate student Michael Preacely took third place in the competition's artist division (January 2012)
  • AdrianaLia Arbeláez-Moutz, D.M.A. student in voice performance, received a Fulbright to do research in Spain (2011)
  • Reginald Smith, Jr. placed third place in the Regional Metropolitan Auditions (2011)
  • Holly Flack and Reginald Smith, Jr. Winners, District Metropolitan Auditions (2010)
  • Antonio Castillo-Ibarra received a Fulbright Award to study in Berlin, Germany at the Freie Universität in Summer 2011
  • Mary Hollis-Hundley, Encouragement Award, District Metropolitan Opera Auditions (2010)
  • 16 UK voice students won prizes in the state National Association of Teachers of Singing 2010 Fall competition in Kentucky: Freshman Men: 1st Place:  Jacob Waid; 3rd Place:  Evan Johnson. Sophomore Men: 1st Place:  Charles Calhoun; 2nd Place:  Elliot Lane; 3rd Place:  Francisco Bedoy. Junior Women: 1st Place:  Monica Dewey; 2nd Place:  Rebecca Farle. Junior Men: 1st Place:  Matt Turner; 2nd Place:  Philip Eschweiler; 3rd Place:  Ron Wilbur. Senior Women: 2nd Place:  Brittanee Lewis-Williams. Senior Men: 1st Place:  Reginald Smith, Jr.. Advanced Intermediate: 1st Place:  Melissa Snow-Groves. Advanced Women: 1st Place:  Jessica French; 2nd Place:  Holly Flack. Advanced Men: 1st Place:  Adam VonAlmen.
  • Eric Brown, Winner, District Metropolitan Auditions (2009)
  • Three UK voice students won prizes in the Peterson Competition in Indiana: First Place: Rachel Sterrenberg; Second Place: Reginald Smith Jr.; Third Place: Elizabeth Maurey (2009)
  • Christopher Conley and Amanda Balltrip, Winners, District Metropolitan Auditions (2008)
  • Afton Battle, Winner, District and Regional Metropolitan Auditions (2008)
  • Brandy Lynn Hawkins, Winner, Tennessee District Metropolitan Auditions (2007)
  • Hannah Smith, Winner, Kentucky District Metropolitan Auditions (2007)
  • Christopher Conley, Winner, Kentucky District Metropolitan Auditions (2007)

Woodwind Students

  • The UK Wind Ensemble was one of nine bands invited to perform at the 2013 College Band Directors National Association National Conference at the University of North Carolina – Greensboro (March 2013) 
  • “Up Top,” UK’s student clarinet quartet, won first place in the 2009 Macauley Chamber Music Competition (Spring 2009)
  • Seth Morris (BM ‘07, flute) won the 29th annual Pappoutsakis Competition in Boston (Spring 2009)
  • David Harper, saxophone, collegiate winner: Student Downbeat award in classical soloist category (2008)
  • Kristen Goguen, bassoon, won second bassoon position in Triad Chamber Orchestra (2008)
  • Daniel Chrisman, bassoon, won “A” sub list audition for Philadelphia Orchestra (2008), and won Austin Symphony Contrabassoon audition (2007), Southern Region third place, Music Teachers National Association Collegiate Woodwind Competition (2004), and National Federated Music Clubs Collegiate Woodwind Competition, State Winner (2003)

Bands

  • Go! The Music of Bob Mintzer, with performances of the UK Wind Ensemble, was nominated for a Grammy Award (October 2010)
  • The UK Wind Ensemble was invited to perform as a featured ensemble at the College Band Directors National Association Southern Regional Conference at the University of Mississippi (February 2010)
  • The UK Wind Ensemble performed world premieres of Go! by Bob Mintzer (2009), Turbine (2006)by John Mackey, Rhythm of the Americas (2006)by Bob Mintzer, and Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Wind Ensemble by Mike Mower (2005). The Wind Ensemble has also hosted and worked directly with award-winning composers and conductors Michael Colgrass, David Maslanka, and Keith Brion.
  • The Wind Ensemble toured the People’s Republic of China for ten days, with the final performance in the new Concert Hall for the Military Band of the People’s Liberation Army in Beijing (May 2008).
  • The UK Wildcat Marching Band performed at the opening ceremonies of the Ryder Cup in Louisville (2008)
  • The UK Symphony Band was invited as featured ensemble, Southern Division MENC/Florida Music Educators’ In Service Clinic-Conference (2005) and the featured ensemble at the Kentucky Music Educators Association Conference in Louisville (2003 and 2008)
  • The Wind Ensemble compact disc Distilled in Kentucky – Premieres from the Bluegrass was nominated for Grammy consideration in 2007 by Mark Recording Company (2007)

Brass Ensembles

  • UK Trumpet Quintet received the Fourth Place Ensemble Award at the National Trumpet Competition in Washington, D.C., both March 2010 and 2011
  • UK Trumpet Ensemble performed by invitation to open for the New York Philharmonic Brass concert at the 2009 International Trumpet Guild Conference (May 2009)
  • UK student horn quartet "Cors d'Amour" won the Horn Quartet competition at the International Horn Society's annual Southeast Horn Workshop (Spring 2009).
  • The UK Thoroughbred Brass Quintet won Second Place in the International Brass Chamber Music Society Competition (2008)
  • UK Trumpet Sextet, Third Place the National Trumpet Competition in Washington DC (2008)

Choral Ensembles

  • Since 1993 UK Choirs have been invited to appear at twenty music education conferences. Four different choirs have received invitations.
  • UK Men’s Chorus, under Jefferson Johnson, performed at the ACDA Southern Division Convention in Winston-Salem, NC in March 2012. The chorus performed at the National Convention of the ACDA in Chicago in March 2011 and the Intercollegiate Male Choruses (IMC) National Seminar at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio (March 2010). The group has also performed at the ACDA Southern Division Convention in Louisville (2008), at the National Association of the Music Educators National Conference, Salt Lake City (2006) and at the inaugural convention of the National Collegiate Choral Organization (NCCO) in San Antonio, TX (2006)
  • UK Chorale, under Dr. Johnson’s direction, toured France (May 2010), performed at the Kennedy Center (2009), toured The Bahamas Under The Auspices Of The Minister Of Culture (2008), performed at the National Cathedral (2003), the Cathedral of St. John the Divine (2001), Carnegie Hall (2001), MENC Southern Division Convention (1999), and ACDA Southern Division Convention (1998)
  • UK Women’s Choir, under Lori Hetzel’s direction, wasbeen invited to perform on the concert series of the Memorial Presbyterian Church in Montgomery, Ala., April 2011.  The choir made its second European tour in June 2009 four years after its first European tour (2005). It was featured at the MENC National Convention in Milwaukee (2008), ACDA Southern Division Convention in Louisville (2008), ACDA National Convention in NYC (2003), MENC Southern Division Convention (2001), and ACDA Southern Division Convention in Florida (2000)

Jazz Ensembles

  • The UK Jazz Ensemble has been invited to perform at the International Jazz Educator's Network Annual Conference in Louisville (January 5-7, 2012)
  • The UK Jazz Ensemble has been invited to perform twice at the 2011 Montreux Jazz Festival and at the North Sea Jazz Festival as part of its first European Tour (28 June–12 July 2011)
  • The UK Jazz Ensemble has twice been invited to perform at the annual Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago, Illinois (1993 and 2007)
  • The UK Jazz Ensemble is a two-time recipient of the "Outstanding Band" Award at the Notre Dame Collegiate jazz Festival—the oldest, most prestigious collegiate competition in the country.
  • The UK Jazz Ensemble is a two-time winner of the "Outstanding Jazz Ensemble Award" at the Elmhurst College Jazz Festival (one of the oldest, most prestigious collegiate competitions in the country)
  • 5 recordings from the Jazz Department have been recommended for Grammy nominations
  • 5 recordings from the Jazz Department have received "4-star" reviews from Downbeat Magazine

Opera Theatre

  • Students in UK Opera Theatre and UKSO performed in New York, World Premiere of Thomas Pasatieri’s God Bless Us Everyone with Di Capo Opera, (16-18 December 2010)
  • UK Opera received at $15K grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for its production of Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess (May 2010)
  • Students in UK Opera Theatre and UKSO performed in New York, World Premiere of Thomas Pasatieri’s God Bless Us Everyone with Di Capo (December 2010)
  • UK Opera Theatre received a $500,000 gift from Warren Rosenthal and a $600,000 challenge grant from William E. and Casiana Schmidt  (August 2010)
  • UK Opera received at $15K grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for its production of Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess (May 2010)
  • UK Opera Theatre performed as part of Our Lincoln at Kennedy Center in Washington, DC (2009)
  • UK Opera Theatre and UK Symphony Orchestra’s world premiere recording of Thomas Pasatieri’s Hotel Casablanca on Albany received a full-page laudatory review in Opera News, Fanfare magazine, and American Record Guide (2008)
  • Gave the first university performance of Thomas Pastateri’s Hotel Casablanca and recorded the opera with Albany Records (2007)
  • Gave the first university performance of Rachel Portman’s The Little Prince (2005). This production won the 2005 National Opera Association prize for Best Production in Category II (Colleges and Universities). James Rodgers and Tedrin Blair Lindsay were cited in the award as director and musical director.

Orchestra

  • UKSO performed with Natasha Paremski, thanks to collaboration with the Singletary Center (February 2012)
  • UKSO performed with the Boston Pops in Rupp Arena as part of Keeneland’s 75th Anniversary, 15 October 2011.
  • UKSO performed in a sold out performance with legendary violinist Itzhak Perlman, thanks to collaboration with the Singletary Center (March 2011)
  • UKSO, under the direction of John Nardolillo, reunited with Arlo Guthrie at Carnegie Hall, 27 November 2010, in a sold out performance
  • UKSO performed with Denyce Graves, Sarah Lee Guthrie, Wynonna Judd, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and Ronan Tynan as the official orchestra of the World Equestrian Games Opening Ceremonies, 25 September 2010. This concert was broadcast internationally.
  • UKSO in collaboration with UK Opera Theatre has recorded Die Fledermaus (2010) and the world premiere recording of Thomas Pasatieri’s Hotel Casablanca (2008) on Albany Records
  • UKSO performed with famed violinist Sarah Chang, thanks to collaboration with the Singletary Center (February 2010)
  • UKSO was the recipient of a 1.2 million dollar endowment created by Maker’s Mark specialty edition bottles with Coach Rich Brooks’s signature (April 2009). This endowment was increased to 1.5 million with the Maker’s Mark John Calipari bottle (April 2010)
  • UKSO performed with legendary violinist Gil Shaham, thanks to collaboration with the Singletary Center (February 2009)
  • UKSO performed as a major part of Our Lincoln at Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.
     (February 2009)
  • UKSO Released a CD of George Frederick McKay’s Epoch on Naxos’s American Masters Series (September 2008), which has received glowing reviews from two national publications and was the number one downloaded classical album on Naxos’s website shortly after its release.
  • Governor Beshear joined the stage with the UKSO to perform Aaron Copland’s A Lincoln Portrait (Fall 2008)
  • UKSO performed with Arlo Guthrie in a sold out performance at Carnegie Hall and released a CD with Arlo: In Times Like These (2007)

Percussion Ensembles

  • UK Percussion Ensemble was named one of the three collegiate winners of the PASIC Percussion Ensemble Competition and featured at PASIC in Indianapolis (2011). This is the fourth time that the group has won this prestigious invitation—something no other university program has achieved.
  • UK Chamber Percussion Group performed by invitation on Focus Day at the 2008 Percussive Arts Society International Convention in Austin, Texas on November 5 (2008)
  • UK Percussion Ensemble was named one of the three collegiate winners of the PASIC Percussion Ensemble Competition and featured at PASIC in Columbus (2007). This is the third time in a row that the group has won this prestigious invitation.

Saxophone Ensembles

  • The UK Mega-Sax Ensemble is a 4-time winner of the coveted Student Downbeat Awards (an international competition)
  • The UK Saxophone Quartet is a 2-time winner of the coveted Student Downbeat Awards (an international competition)
  • The UK Mega-Sax Quartet has been a quarter finalist of the International Fischoff Chamber Competition
  • The UK Mega-Sax Quartet is a four-time winner of the "Outstanding Combo Award" at the Elmhurst College Jazz Festival (one of the oldest, most prestigious collegiate competitions in the country)

Faculty Awards

  • An article authored by John Okley Egger and D. Gregory Springer and Lori Gooding entitled “The Effect of Behavioral Contracting on Preservice Elementary Teachers’ Performance Achievement on the Soprano Recorder” was accepted for publication in the Journal of Music Teacher Education, and will appear in an upcoming volume of the journal. (2013)
  • Ron Pen and the Red State Ramblers were invited by the U.S. Embassy to tour Kyrgyzstan for ten days culminating in a performance at the National Opera House in Bishek as part of a celebration of 20 years of U.S.-Kyrgyz relations (February 2012)
  • W. Harry Clarke (Professor Emeritus) won the KMEA Distinguished Service Award, which honors an individual who has shown outstanding leadership service to KMEA and to music education (February 2012)
  • Ron Pen and the Red State Ramblers were invited by the U.S. Embassy to tour Kyrgyzstan for ten days culminating in a performance at the National Opera House in Bishek as part of a celebration of 20 years of U.S.-Kyrgyz relations (February 2012)
  • Lori Gooding was awarded a UK ADC/NIA Grant ($25,000) in Music Therapy (2011)
  • Elizabeth Arnold, soprano, and Ben Arnold, piano, performed an all-Liszt Song Recital in Weimar, Germany in honor of Liszt’s 200th Birthday celebration as part of Der Ganze Liszt – Liszt Interpretationen: Internationaler Kongress, Ben Arnold also gave an invited paper “Early, Late, and Last Thoughts: Liszt’s Songs 1839 to 1886” and chaired a musicological session on “Musikdenken und Kompositionstechnik” (18-22 October 2011)
  • Lori Gooding received the SER-AMTA Special Recognition Award for Excellence in Service (2011)
  • Lori Hetzel was the 2011 recipient of the Robert K. Baar Award, presented annually by the Kentucky Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association and given to one choral director in the state "who exhibits outstanding leadership in choral music and promotes music education in the state of Kentucky." (July 2011)
  • Cody Birdwell, Director of UK Bands, has been named Vice President of the CBDNA-Southern Division (2011) and will become President-Elect in 2013 and President in 2015
  • David Sogin was nominated for the Outstanding Achievement in String Research Awardwhich is to be awarded for the first time at the National Conference of the American String Teachers Association in 2011
  • Ron Pen, I Wonder as I Wander: The Life of John Jacob Niles (University of Kentucky Press, 2010)
  • George Boulden was named as KMEA District 7 College/University Teacher of the Year (2010)
  • Everett McCorvey was selected to be the Executive Producer of the Opening Cere-monies for the World Equestrian Games (2010)
  • Skip Gray, winner of the first Clifford Bevan Award for Meritorious Work in Low Brass Scholarship (2010)
  • Jonathan Glixon, Provost's Distinguished Service Professor of Music (2010)
  • Noemi Lugo received a Fulbright to research and perform in Brazil during Spring 2010
  • Benjamin Karp was invited to serve as a Visiting Artist in Cello Performance at Indiana University (2009-2010)
  • Cliff Jackson received one of six university wide Great Teacher Awards from the UK Alumni Association (2010)
  • Diana Hallman published an article in Music, Theater, and Cultural Transfer: Paris 1830-1914 (Chicago: Chicago University Press, 2009) that received the American Musicological Society Ruth A. Solie Award for “a collection of musicological essays of exceptional merit published during the previous year in any language and in any country.” (2010)
  • Cliff Jackson was named vocal Coach of the Year by ClassicalSinger magazine (Summer 2009)
  • Irina Voro received a Presidential Scholars Teacher Recognition Award (awarded annually to 130 out of 7,000,000 American teachers nominated by their outstanding students. Her private student Connie Wu named her the most influential teacher in her life (August 2009)
  • Everett McCorvey was recognized as a Kentucky Star Awards winner (April 2009) and was interviewed on the national Bob Edwards Show (Spring 2009)
  • Ron Pen won the Distinguished Service Award of the Society for American Music at the society's Annual Meeting. This recognizes Professor Pen as one of the outstanding scholars in the field of American Music (March 2009)
  • Noemi Lugo received a Fulbright to research and perform in Brazil during 2009-2010 (March 2009)
  • James Campbell, “A Teacher Who Made A Difference,” UK College of Education (2007 and 2009)
  • Beth Glixon received a post doc in musicology at Yale University (Spring 2009)
  • The OSLANDAILEY combo of Miles Osland, saxophone, and Raleigh Dailey, piano, were featured in an article and CD for Sept./Oct. 2008 issue of Saxophone Magazine (2008)
  • The Kentucky Jazz Repertory Orchestra (Professors Miles Osland & Dick Domek, co-conductors) released its second CD titled Flying Home (2008)
  • Everett McCorvey, elected to the UK Board of Trustees (2008)
  • James Campbell, named to the Drum Corps International Hall of Fame (2008)
  • Noemi Lugo, University of Kentucky Provost’s Awards for Outstanding Teaching (2008)
  • Lori Hetzel, “A Teacher Who Made a Difference” UK college of Education (2003 and 2008)
  • Jonathan Glixon, one of four UK Research Professorships that UK awards each year (2008)
  • James Campbell, Provost's Distinguished Service Professor of Music (2007)
  • Schuyler Robinson, Professor of Organ, Harpsichord, and Sacred Music, served as Visiting Resident Organist at Canterbury Cathedral, Canterbury, England July 30-August 6, 2007.
  • Everett McCorvey, elected to serve on the board of directors for the National Assembly of State Art Agencies (NASAA) (2007)
  • Irina Voro, University of Kentucky Provost’s Awards for Outstanding Teaching (2005) and Kentucky Music Teacher’s Association, Teacher of the Year Award (2004)
  • James Campbell, First Place Winner in the 2005 PAS Composition Contest for original composition, "Garage Drummer" (2005)

A Brief Historical Timeline of the School of Music

1864-2004

1865 UK was founded as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Kentucky.

1881 Music courses first offered.

1918 Department of Music formed.

1918 University Orchestra formed – housed in White Hall.

1927 Winslow Street Church enlarged to house Departments of Art and Music.

1937 Department of Music receives National Association of Schools of Music accreditation.

1939 Department of Music reorganized with full-time faculty in applied music.

1948 First graduate degrees in Music conferred.

1950 Fine Arts Building dedicated. Includes Music, Theatre and Visual Arts Department as well as the new Guignol Theater.

1970 First DMA conferred (Helen Fullbright).

1971 Ph.D. in Musicology approved.

1972 Department of Music becomes School of Music.

1978 First Ph.D. conferred (Kristine Forney). Dr. Joe Buttram becomes Director of the School of Music

1979 UK Center for the Arts dedicated with Robert Shaw conducting the Verdi Requiem with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.

1980 Doctoral programs in music reorganized to include D.M.A. in Performance and Composition, and Ph.D. in Musicology, Theory and Music Education.

1986 Center for the Arts is renamed Otis A. Singletary Center for the Arts. Dr. Alan Hersh becomes Director of the School of Music.

1989 Professor Harry Clarke becomes Director of the School of Music.

1991 UK Friends of Music established to provide public support for the School of Music.

1996 UK Opera Theatre program is established.

1998 The John Jacob Niles Center for American Music is established.

2000 The Lucille Caudill Little Fine Arts Library and Learning Center opens.

2003 Dr. Ben Arnold becomes Director of the School of Music.

2004 First Annual Scholarship Benefit Concert held, featuring Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.

2005

  • Second Annual Scholarship Benefit Concert featuring UKSO and UK Choirs in Carl Orff's Carmina Burana.
  • First Moonlight Serenade black tie fundraiser held at Pin Oak Stud.
  • First UK Women’s Choir European Tour

2006

  • UK Symphony Orchestra performs sold-out concert with Arlo Guthrie.
  • UKSO released its first CD, Music of the Horse, in partnership with Keeneland.
  • Third Annual Scholarship Benefit Concert featuring UKSO and UK Choirs in Mahler Second Symphony ("Resurrection").
  • Second Moonlight Serenade black tie fundraiser held at R.J. Corman's aircraft hangar in Nicholasville.

2007

  • UK Symphony Orchestra performed in Carnegie Hall with Arlo Guthrie
  • Fourth Annual Scholarship Benefit Concert featuring UKSO and UK Choirs in “A Tribute to Leonard Bernstein: The 50th Anniversary of West Side Story
  • Third Moonlight Serenade black tie fundraiser held at R.J. Corman's aircraft hangar in Nicholasville.
  • UKOT and UK Symphony Orchestra’s world premiere recording of Thomas Pasatieri’s Hotel Casablanca on Albany

2008

  • The UK Wind Ensemble traveled on a 10-day tour to China
  • Fifth Annual Scholarship Benefit Concert featuring UKSO and UK Choirs in “To Russia With Love,” with a performance of Prokofiiev’s Alexander Nevsky
  • Fourth Moonlight Serenade black tie fundraiser held at historic Gainesway Farm
  • UK Chorale toured The Bahamas Under The Auspices Of The Minister Of Culture

2009

  • UK Symphony Orchestra, Members of the UK Opera Theatre, and the UK Chorale performed “Our Lincoln” at the Kennedy Center.
  • Sixth Annual Scholarship Benefit Concert featuring UKSO and UK Choirs in featuring Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.
  • Fifth Moonlight Serenade black tie fundraiser held at CastlePost in Versailles
  • Second UK Women’s Choir European Tour

2010

  • UK Symphony Orchestra returned with Arlo Guthrie to Carnegie Hall in November
  • Seventh Annual Scholarship Benefit Concert featuring UKSO and UK Choirs in Hector Berlioz’s Requiem
  • Sixth Moonlight Serenade fundraiser held at picturesque Donamire Farm
  • Go! The Music of Bob Mintzer, with performances of the UK Wind Ensemble, was nominated for a Grammy Award
  • UK Chorale toured France

2011

  • Eighth Annual Scholarship Benefit Concert featuring UKSO and UK Choirs in Johannes Brahms’s Requiem
  • UKSO performed with the Boston Pops in Rupp Arena as part of Keeneland’s 75th Anniversary
  • UK Jazz Ensemble makes first European tour and plays at the Montreux Jazz Festival and at the North Sea Jazz Festival

2012

  • Ninth Annual Scholarship Benefit Concert featuring UKSO and UK Choirs in “An Evening of Favorite Opera Overtures and Choruses”
  • Third UK Women’s Choir European Tour
  • Dr. Skip Gray appointed Interim Director of UK School of Music.

2013

  • Living Landscapes initiative on UK’s campus with students and faculty from the Art College of Inner Mongolia University (IMU), part of an exchange with the University. Students in UK Symphony Orchestra, Percussion Ensemble, Improvisation and Jazz Ensemble performed side-by-side with students from IMU. Additionally, a variety of master classes were held with IMU faculty and students.
  • acoUstiKats compete on NBC’s “Sing-Off” vocal competition

2014

  • Dr. John Scheib appointed Director of the UK School of Music
  • UK Symphony Orchestra performs with pianist Lang Lang
  • UK Jazz Ensemble tours China
  • Ethnomusicology doctoral candidate Tanner Jones selected as a recipient of a Fulbright U.S. Student Program scholarship
  • Fifth invitation of the UK Percussion Ensemble to the Percussive Arts Society International Convention