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Fall Edition
Volume 100, Number 2

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Music major prepares for senior recital and a career nurturing the talents of others

A behind-the-scenes look at the production of senior recitals

Music major senior recital

Matt Lamb '09 prepared up to a year in advance for his senior recital, a requirement for music education majors at Messiah.

After four years of learning music, mastering new instruments and languages, and countless hours spent in the Climenhega Fine Arts Center practice rooms, music majors at Messiah are more than ready to display the fruits of their hard labor by performing their senior recitals. Music education student Matt Lamb ’09, under the guidance of voice instructor Damian Savarino, has spent the last year preparing for his big day.

Preparations for senior recitals begin at least a year in advance with song selection. Lamb, whose concentration is in voice, must learn and memorize at least ten songs for his joint recital, shared with David Perry, also a music education major with a voice concentration. Lamb is finding recital preparations to be more challenging than preparing for juries in previous years. “Up to this point, we have only had to learn three to five pieces each semester. Now I have so much music in so many languages in my brain,” he says. In addition to two solo pieces in and a duet in English, Lamb is learning three songs in French, three in Italian, and one in Latin. “My biggest challenge when I’m singing is to make sure I don’t jump to a different song,” he says.

Performing is nothing new for Lamb, who began singing in a children’s choir at age four. The music education of his childhood ranged from piano, violin, and tuba lessons in elementary school to playing in his high school’s marching band, singing in the choir, and acting in musical theatre productions. When he arrived at Messiah, Lamb had to make the difficult decision regarding whether music was just a hobby or whether he wanted it to be his life. “It was an examination of how passionate I was about music,” says Lamb. Seeing first-hand how influential music teachers have been in his life, Lamb desires to nurture a similar passion for music in others while pursuing his own passion in school.

Although music education majors and performance majors take many of the same classes and participate in the same ensembles, the path to becoming a music educator is different than that of a solo performer. “On one hand, they’re preparing you to be a professional performer, and on the other hand they’re preparing you to be a professional educator. As an educator in a performance area, you [still] need to be able to perform like a professional,” says Lamb.

—-Melissa Paolangeli ’09

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