New scholarship, study abroad trip coming to QU music department

By Shane Hulsey

The Quincy University Music Department has big plans for 2019. Two, to be exact.V

Virtuoso Music Scholarship

The music department is offering up to four full-tuition scholarships for incoming freshmen interested in joining any of the QU band or choir groups in the 2019-2020 school year. 

QU Director of Bands Bill Machold said the Virtuoso Music Scholarship will serve as a valuable recruiting tool for the university.

“We want to encourage local music teachers, band directors and choir directors to tell their students, ‘Hey, there’s this really cool opportunity. You could go to college tuition-free just for singing in the choir or playing an instrument in the band,’” he said. “The idea is to build that buzz and excitement about our program and also raise the talent level of the students that come here.”

Machold said the music department has various groups that tour area high schools to give high school students a glimpse of the product QU has to offer.

“We have a woodwind quartet, a saxophone quartet, a percussion ensemble, and a chamber choir that perform at local schools and meet those local band and choir directors,” he said. “Many of us network and already know those directors, so we use those connections to get the word out about the scholarship.”

The department will equally divide the scholarship amongst instrumental and vocal students. Either two or four students—one or two each of instrumental and vocal students—will receive the scholarship depending on the turnout at auditions.

David Spillman, a tuba player for the QU band, said this scholarship will relieve some of the stress caused by paying for college.

“It’ll help alleviate some of the financial burden of going to college,” he said. “It also enables them to do what they love: sing or play an instrument.”

The auditions will be Feb. 23, the same day as the QU Music Visit Day. The visit day will run from 9 a.m. to noon. Auditions for the scholarship will begin at 1 p.m.

Germany trip

May 15-25, the department will take 30 music students on a trip to Germany.

On this trip, students will explore the area in which famous composer Johann Sebastian Bach was active and, Machold said, “hopefully” see an opera performance. The QU woodwind groups and chamber choir will also perform in various churches in the area.

Machold said the trip will give the students a glimpse into the music they perform at QU, as much of the music the groups perform originated across the pond.

“The students are going to learn about and see some history they wouldn’t otherwise see in the United States,” he said. “Much of the music history we study here happened in Europe. The United States didn’t really contribute much to international music until the 20th century. We’re going to get to see and take part in that history.”

Students are fundraising for the Quincy University music department trip.

“We really have a great group of kids,” Machold said. “They bond well together. They do a lot of things together. They live together. It’s just kind of a big family we have on campus.”

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