News Archive - 2012

UNF Music Flagship Program Cello Student a Finalist

 Andre Washington

Congratulations to Dr. Nick Curry and his cello student Andre Washington who was just named as one of the four collegiate finalists in the Northwest Florida Concerto Competition! Andre will compete to perform as a soloist with the orchestra in Niceville, FL in 2 weeks.

UNF Music Flagship Program Cummer Series Schedule Begins

 Cummer Family Foundation Chamber Music Series

The Cummer Family Foundation Chamber Music Series Director/UNF clarinet professor Dr. Guy Yehuda and special guest Baritone Theodore Baerg appear on NPR affiliate WJCT's upcoming episode of "First Coast Connect" to highlight the 2012-13 concert lineup. Click "Listen" and then scroll to the 37-minute mark to hear the interview. (It runs from about 37 to 44 on the timeline.)


Listen now.  

UNF Music Flagship Program Kicks Off Fall Season

News - 25th Anniversary GAJS

Dr. Randy Tinnin, chair of UNF's Music Flagship Program, and J.B. Scott, associate professor of music and Great American Jazz Series artistic director, discuss the fall concert season and the 25th anniversary of the Great American Jazz Series on NPR affiliate WJCT 89.9 FM's "First Coast Connect" radio talk show. Scroll to the 36-minute mark to lisen to the interview.

Listen now. 

UNF Jazz Studies Professor Releases New Book on iTunes

News - Barry Greene New Book
Book Available on iTunes 

Barry Greene has published an interactive ibook called "Playing Jazz Guitar," a comprehensive guide to playing jazz guitar. Written by Barry Greene, one of the leading educators of guitar instruction. This ibook is fully interactive containing numerous audio, video, and notation examples. There are several chapters that discuss the aesthetic of being a musician. Topics such as ear training and learning to be an artist are fully explored. This ibook is unique in it's presentation and scope.

Learn more. 

UNF Jazz Pianist and Singer's Passion to Succeed Bolstered by a Helping Hand

New - DeSean Kirkland
UNF Recent Graduate D'Sean Kirkland 


D’Sean Kirkland just received a Bachelor’s Degree in music from UNF, and he’s headed to graduate school at Full Sail University in Orlando for music business. Without the Jacksonville Commitment Scholarship program, a public/private partnership, none of it would have been possible.


Read full story.  

UNF Jazz Guitar Professor Goes Home

News - Barry Greene
UNF Professor Barry Greene 

Talented guitarist Barry Greene comes long way from North Bergen. Growing up in North Bergen, Barry Greene was always known as one of the good guys. And although handsome and happy-go-lucky, he was super-shy. Not anymore.


Read full story. 

UNF Piano Professor Wins Teaching Award

News - Erin Teaching Award
UNF Professor Erin K. Bennett 

UNF Piano Professor Erin K. Bennett was awarded a UNF "Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award" for the College of Arts and Sciences, Music Flagship Program. 

UNF Percussion Professor Honored

News - Charlotte Teaching Award
UNF Professor Charlotte Mabrey 

Charlotte Mabrey has won the “Educator Award” from The Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville. She will be honored at the 2012 City Lights Arts Awards celebration on May 8 at 6:00 p.m. in the AT&T Tower. 

UNF Music Award Winners Announced

 News - Student Awards 2012
UNF Freshman Music Students 

Click a link to download an image. 

Freshman - Sophomore - Junior - Senior 

UNF Program Offers Students with Intellectual Disabilities Full University Experience

 News - Transition Classes
Student Joel Reeves in Professor Jason Hibbard's Class 

WILL DICKEY/The Times-Union 

Joel Reeves (center) attends a music appreciation class at the University of North Florida where he is enrolled in the On Campus Transition Program Wednesday, April 11, 2012 in Jacksonville, Florida. The program offers young adults with developmental disabilities the opportunity to have a college experience while receiving transition services.

Read full story. 

UNF Opera Ensemble and Orchestra Wow Audiences

 News - The Mikado in EU Magazine
Student Members of the UNF Opera Ensemble and Orchestra 

The UNF Opera Ensemble under the Direction of Dr. Krzysztof Biernacki and the UNF Orchestra conducted by Dr. Simon Shiao presented a staged concert version of Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Mikado” for four performances from March 30 to April 1 in the Lazzara Performance Hall on the campus of the University of North Florida. If you missed this excellent production, be sure to read to the end where we will tell you of another opportunity to experience the music and comedy of future Gilbert and Sullivan productions.

Read full story.  

UNF Vocal and Orchestral Students Perform 'The Mikado'

News - Mikado
Student Hannah Meloy 

UNF performers, along with a full symphony orchestra, will transform W. S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan’s most famous opera, “The Mikado,” into their very own concert performance.

Read full story. 

UNF Jazz Studies Student Wins DownBeat Magazine Award

News - Mica
Student Mica Bethea and His Big Band 

Mica Bethea, Jazz Studies student of Dennis Marks and Dr. Clarence Hines, was selected by DownBeat Magazine as an undergraduate college winner for his Jazz Arrangement “Outskirts.”

UNF Voice Student Wins Metropolitan Opera Award

News - Brittany Sherree Fouché
Student Brittany Sherree Fouché  

Voice Senior Brittany Sherree Fouché, a student of Dr. Krzysztof Biernacki, won the “Metropolitan Opera’s Young Artist Encouragement” award.

UNF Clarinet Student Wins Major Competition

News - Brandon Mosley
Student Brandon Mosley 

Clarinet Freshman Brandon Mosley, a student of Dr. Guy Yehuda, won the prestigious “Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra Young Artists Concerto Competition.”

UNF Chamber Singers Perform Live on NPR

News - WJCT
Abigail A. Coker, Masami Miyazaki, Azschrielle Jackson, Dr. Cara Tasher, and Maria C. Peña  

The UNF Chamber Singers performed live on NPR (WJCT 89.9 FM) Public Radio's "First Coast Connect." Dr. Cara Tasher, director of Choral Activities at UNF, also discusses the group's upcoming singing tour to South Africa. 


Scroll to the 44:25 minute mark to hear the performance and interview.


Listen now. 

UNF Music Professor Performs for Oprah Winfrey

News - Nick Curry, Oprah
Dr. Nick Curry 

Cello professor, Dr. Nick Curry, was invited to play for the filming of the finale of Oprah Winfrey’s reality TV show “Lovetown U.S.A.”, where he played his cello with Oprah in attendance.

UNF Music Students Win Talent Showcase

News - Perfect Fifths
UNF Present and Former Music Students Bryan Hayes, Emorja RobinsonLamar Boyde, Jacob Rothman, and Nathaniel Edwards 

UNF Music Flagship Program students won the Jax Talent 2012 contest. Jax Talents 2012 is a competition event organized by Eco Latino Media Group and supported by The Florida Times-Union Media and WJXT - Chanel 4 to support local talent.


Click here to watch performance video.

UNF Chamber Singers Perform National Anthem on CNN

News - Chamber Singers on CNN
UNF Chamber Singers Open the 2012 Republican Debate Hosted by Wolf Blitzer 

UNF Chamber Singers sing the National Anthem at the Florida Republican Presidential Debate held at the Lazzara Performance Hall.  


Click here to watch the Youtube video.

UNF Piano Students and Faculty Present at Collegiate Piano Pedagogy Symposium

News - Piano Pedagogy Symposium
Students and Faculty at the Inaugural Collegiate Piano Pedagogy Symposium 

Dr. Erin K. Bennett and UNF piano pedagogy major Sarah Hartley traveled to Ann Arbor, Michigan January 20-21, 2012 for the inaugural Collegiate Piano Pedagogy Symposium. The event featured original research presented by representatives from 16 different collegiate chapters of Music Teachers National Association from across the country. Dr. Bennett gave a piano master class and Hartley presented a paper and demonstration, entitled “Creating a Culture of Fun in Group Settings: Instructional Strategies for the Music Teacher.”

UNF Saxophone Student Wins Awards

News - Saxophone Student
UNF Saxophone Student Nicki Roman 


Winner in the Florida Division of the MTNA’s Young Artist Competition (Nov 2011): UNF Saxophone student Nicki Roman competed in the woodwind category of the Music Teachers National Association Young Artist Competition for the state of Florida and was selected as the winner to represent the state in the regional round. She was one of the youngest competitors in the 19-26 group.

Winner of the Niceville Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition (Feb 2012): After a taped audition process, Nicki competed in the finals in Niceville, FL, and won the opportunity to perform Glazunov’s Concerto for Alto Saxophone and String orchestra in February 2012. 

UNF Music Grad Takes to the Stage - Tours with "Glee" Star

News - Daniel Kalisher with Glee Star Matt Morrison
"Glee" Cast Member Matthew Morrison with UNF Music Graduate Daniel Kalisher 

He was about 8 or 9 years old when he realized what he wanted to do for the rest of his life. After listening to his father, an accomplished musician, play with his friends, he realized that was the life for him. “I took after him from an early age,” said Daniel Kalisher, a 2009 graduate from the University of North Florida’s Department of Music. “And I really haven’t changed my life goal since I was really young. I wanted to be a musician, play guitar and tour. Now I’m doing what I saw myself doing when I was a kid. How crazy is that?”


Read full story. 

UNF Cello Student Receives Special Award

News - Florida American String Teachers Young Artist of the Year
Cello Student Hannah Hoffman 

Hannah Hoffman (freshman cello major and student of Dr. Nick Curry) was awarded the "Florida American String Teachers Young Artist of the Year" award. ASTA is the largest professional organization of string players in the United States and this is a great honor.  

UNF String Students Meet American Grammy Award-Winning Violinist Joshua Bell

News - String Students with Josh Bell
Sam Felber, Joshua Bell, and Dayna Osan 


Joshua Bell performed with the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra in January to rave reviews. UNF strings students enjoyed the performance and speaking with the acclaimed violinist.

UNF Cello Professor Featured on New CD

News - Journey Around the Sun 

"Journey Around the Sun" CD 


Cello Professor Dr. Nick Curry's playing is featured on Bill Wren and Frank Ralls’ album “Journey Around the Sun,” which is being played all over the U.S. and abroad on Sirius radio. It has been as high as #1 on the new age charts and #2 on the world music charts on

UNF Cello Professor Performs with the Trans-Siberian Orchestra

News - Trans-Siberian Orchestra
Dr. Nick Curry, Roddy Chong and Kyle Wehner

Cello Professor Dr. Nick Curry performed with the Trans-Siberian Orchestra as a soloist in the 2011 December concert in the Jacksonville Arena. 

UNF Piano Professor Featured Artist at Festival of Creative Pianists in Colorado

News - Festival of Creative Pianists
Dr. Gary Smart 

Piano Professor Gary Smart will be the featured artist at the "Festival of Creative Pianists" in Colorado this April 11-15, 2012. He will play a concert of standard repertoire of his own works, jazz and classical improvisations, and also present a workshop, and give private lessons and masterclasses. 

UNF Piano Professor's New CD Receives Rave Reviews

News - Blossoms
Blossoms CD by Dr. Gary Smart 


Piano professor Gary Smart's CD "Blossoms" (Albany label) has gotten rave reviews and garnered a lot of attention. It received an excellent review in the Nov./Dec. issue of "Fanfare," the preeminent classical CD magazine as well as in the Mar./Apr. issue, along with a feature interview and a display including the CD on the magazine's cover. Reviewer comments include, "His protean music is utterly unique and, at least to my ears, it defies categorization," and "Smart plays with astonishing facility and ebullience."

UNF Student and Professor to Present at University of Michigan Piano Pedagogy Symposium

News - University of Michigan Piano Pedagogy Symposium
Piano Student and Faculty Represent UNF 

Music student Sarah Hartley will be representing UNF and its new student organization, UNF Music Teachers Association, at the upcoming inaugural University of Michigan Piano Pedagogy Symposium (January 21-22, 2012 in Ann Arbor). The symposium is a gathering of collegiate piano teachers and collegiate chapters of MTNA (Music Teachers National Association) from across the country. Hartley’s presentation is titled: “Creating a Culture of Fun in Group Settings: Instructional Strategies for the Music Teacher.” Assistant professor of piano and piano pedagogy Dr. Erin K. Bennett will also present.