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BHSU Music kicks off full program of events for the spring semester

Author: BHSU Communications/Friday, February 15, 2019/Categories: Events, Students, College of Liberal Arts, Community, Events, Scholarships

The BHSU Music Department continues their schedule of events for the 2019 spring semester with performances from each vocal and band ensemble as well as senior recitals and a special choir performance in Sioux Falls. Performances are located in the Clare and Josef Meier Recital Hall on the Black Hills State University campus and are free to community and students, unless noted.

Starting this semester’s events will be the annual scholarship day held by the Music Department Saturday, Feb. 16 for students interested in enrolling in a BHSU music program. Closed auditions are welcome either by live performance or recording and must include two contrasting pieces. BHSU awards approximately $70,000 annually to students continuing their music education.

Throughout the semester, each ensemble in both the BHSU band and choir programs will have performances. Several BHSU seniors will perform their graduating recitals as well. These recitals are essentially senior capstone projects, according to Assistant Professor of Music Dr. Christopher Hahn.

“It is always exciting to see how our students have progressed and show off what they can do before they graduate or go off to student teach,” says Hahn.

Students begin preparing for their senior recitals a year in advance to show off how far they have come. Performances last about 40 minutes each and can vary from instrumental to vocal performances based on the student’s focus area.

Seniors performing their recitals this spring include (see schedule below for individual recital times):
  • Abby Belus, graphic design and music major from Circle, Mont.
  • Kevin Kaitfors, music major from Spearfish
  • Micah Pennel, music education major from Hill City
  • Sarah Rathert, music education major from Rapid City
BHSU will also host area schools for a private clinic during spring break in March. Professors at BHSU will work with the different groups and help to enhance their music skills. Sturgis High School and Edgemont High School are two of the schools already committed to participate in that clinic.

Beginning last fall, the BHSU Concert Choir – directed by Dr. Jonathon Nero, professor of music – has been practicing Gustav Mahler’s “Symphony No. 8.” In April, the BHSU Choir will join the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra and the South Dakota State University Choir for a performance of this prestigious musical piece in Sioux Falls.

Lastly, the semester will end with a European tour for the choirs. Nero will accompany the BHSU Concert and Chamber Choir students to Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic for performances.

About the BHSU Music Department:

The Music Department strives to develop both student and community musicians and contributes to the region’s musical culture. The Music Department blends individual study for refinement and creative expression with group performance for a comprehensive and cooperative educational environment. The BHSU Music program is fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music, and is a great fit for those planning to work in music-related fields, become professional musicians, or pursue a teaching career or graduate program.

All events take place in the Meier Recital Hall on the BHSU campus and admission is free unless noted with a ($).

  • 16: Scholarship Audition Day (not open to the public)
  • 24: BH Bands, 2:30 p.m.
  • 4-5: Band Clinic (not open to the public)
  • 16: Russel Svenningson Guest Recital, 7:30 p.m.
  • 20–22: SD Intercollegiate Band (Aberdeen)
  • 23: SD NATS Auditions (Spearfish, not open to the public)
  • 29: Northern Hills Chamber Chorale, 7:30 p.m.
  • 31: Sarah Rathert Senior Recital, 2:30 p.m.
  • 4: Kevin Kaitfors Senior Recital, 7:30 p.m.
  • 6: Abby Belus Senior Recital, 7:30 p.m.
  • 7: Dakota Chamber Orchestra, 2:30 p.m.
  • 8: BHSU Festival of Men’s Voices Concert, 6 p.m.
  • 11: Jazz Ensemble, 7:30 p.m.
  • 13: BH Choirs Concert, 7:30 p.m.
  • 14: BH Bands Concert, 2:30 p.m.
  • 16: Micah Pennel Senior Recital, 7:30 p.m.
  • 27-28: Concert Choir performance w/SDSO and SDSU ($) (Sioux Falls)
  • 6-17: Concert Choir and Chamber Singers European Tour ($) (Varied locations in Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic)
Schedule is subject to change. For more information contact Dr. Christopher Hahn, assistant professor of Music at 605-642-6888 or

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