A higher education through participation in the arts

Some say contrasts are what define us. Many variances are found in life, which may be why many diverse artists throughout history have created many artistic works.

From Oct. 2-4, The Music Department was busy performing each night. Oct. 2, UVU’s Wind Symphony performed at The Covey Center, Oct. 3 Utah Symphony performed in UVU’s Grande Ballroom, and Oct. 4 UVU Symphony Orchestra performed at the Reagan Theater. A spirit of artistic dedication, celebration and passion was evident on and off stage each night.

President Mathew S. Holland even made a special appearance on Thursday night with the UVU Symphony Orchestra, narrating Lincoln Portrait by Aaron Copland. Through the narration, President Holland was able to share some of his personal passions.

“Their performance was amazing. I have always loved Copland. And while studying in school, a lot of my attention was on Lincoln,” Holland said. “To me, the point is to elevate students above just job training, and our Art Departments provide that higher education.”

According to Cheung Chau, conductor of the UVU Symphony Orchestra, one of the greatest things about music is that it not only makes you a more complete, smarter person, but it’s everywhere.

“When we listen to music, neurotransmissions are made in our brain; these connections help us learn and focus on things much better,” Chau said.

Between each piece Tuesday night, Conductor Dr. James Colonna, Director of Bands at UVU, addressed the audience with information applicable to the upcoming music. According to Colonna, the modern audience doesn’t always understand certain etiquettes, which can be a distraction from the performance.

“The advancements in technology have made a gap between how older and younger generations place focus during a performance,” Colonna said. “I’m always looking for different ways that could change perspectives with how people are currently viewing any classical concert.”

Having never been to a symphony concert before, 24-year-old Shayna Reynolds of Orem stated after the experience Wednesday with the Utah Symphony that her eyes had been opened.

“The beautiful music was like nothing I had heard before, and it was entertaining to watch the conductor lead,” Reynolds said. “It’s almost as if the performers were giving voice to his unique ‘dance’ that seemed directed at them.”

Through allowing ones emotional chords to vibrate and shaking off the protective ego-shells, one can become more able to define and participate in the harmony of the world all around.