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                    newsletter                    November 2012         Volume 21                                                                                              
Playing With the Oakland Symphony Orchestra
The Oakland Symphony Orchestra (OSO) gives four concerts a year, two in the fall semester and two in the winter. The last of these, in April, is always one of the great highlights of our performance season. It is a veritable celebration of music, and a truly thrilling moment for many in our music program since it takes place at Orchestra Hall, the home of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Even for the audience members it is an occasion, one many of them like to dress up for. Associate Professor Gregory Cunningham, the conductor of the OSO, believes the orchestra is an essential component of our music program, providing necessary experiences for our students, and not just for instrumental majors. He notes that almost every year a piano major plays with the orchestra in the third concert of the year, which features the winners of the OU Concerto Competition.
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November News
Assistant professor Drake Dantzler accompanied a group of 13 voice majors to the Detroit Opera House recently to see the Barber of Seville. They were there at the special invitation of the company and before the performance, they were given a tour of the backstage area and the costume shop, and even of the stage itself. They also ate dinner at the Opera House and Dr. David DiChiera, the general director of the Michigan Opera Theatre, who was formerly chair of the music department at OU, spoke with them and answered their questions. They also met with Maestra Suzanne Mallare Acton. Cheyanne Coss, one of the voice majors who took the tour, was thrilled by the whole experience and amazed by the amount of space backstage and in the wings. Dr. Dantzler hopes this will be the beginning of an ongoing relationship between our opera program and one of the Midwest's premier professional opera companies.
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Behind the Scenes: Designing Spring Awakening
The Tony Award-winning show Spring Awakening will be our next theatre production, but Associate Professor Fred Love who is directing says, "We are not replicating the Broadway production. It is a re-imagining, and the ideas and work of my team of student designers are an integral part of my stage direction. Their ideas are very specific and they have worked through challenges and obstacles to produce the triumph this work represents." As audience members enter the theatre, they will get their first impression of the production from the set, which was designed by senior Theatre Design and Technology major Amy Brooks. Tech and design students attend a bid meeting at the end of every school year to pitch for the work they want the following season. 
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Rick Carver: A Life in Theatre
Whether it's blowing fire, juggling clubs or standing on tables squirting ketchup packets acting like a drunken pirate, Rick Carver loves what he does. Carver is a professional entertainer in the variety arts. That means magic, mime, juggling, stilt walking and improvisation. "My belief is that these skills aren't dead like a lot of people think," he said.
For most of his life, Carver has worked toward developing his skills. This pursuit has led Carver to a life of piecing together jobs and even initially went unsupported by his father. Carver has performed in shows and Renaissance festivals across the country, marketed himself as solo performance persona "Ric Roc Zoo" and formed a theatre troupe "Delirio del'Arte" through the Michigan Renaissance Festival. Overall, "It's a ball," he said.
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Department of Music, Theatre, and Dance

207 Varner Hall
2200 North Squirrel Road
Rochester, MI 48309-4401
(248) 370-2030
Upcoming Events


Saturday, 11/3
Guitar Workshop

Sunday, 11/4, 7 pm
Chamber Ensemble Concert

Thursday, 11/8, 6 pm
Oakland Chamber Players

Thursday, 11/8 -
Sunday, 11/18
Spring Awakening

Sunday, 11/11, 3 pm
Matthew Kay &
OU Brass Band

Sunday, 11/11, 5 pm
Oakland Chamber Player

Tuesday, 11/13, 7 pm
Guitar Studio Concert

Thursday, 11/15, noon
OU Jazz at noon

Thursday, 11/15, 8 pm
OU Jazz Band with
Ingrid Jensen

Friday, 11/16, 8 pm
Saturday, 11/8 pm
University Chorus &
Oakland Chorale

Sunday, 11/18, 3 pm
Oakland Symphony Orchestra

Monday, 11/19, 8 pm
Percussion Ensemble

Tuesday, 11/20 8pm
Oakland Jazz Singers &
Jazz Combos

Tuesday, 11/27, 7 pm
OU Chamber Orchestra

Thursday, 11/29, 6 pm
Friday, 11/30, 8 pm
Saturday, 12/1, 2 pm
& 8 pm
Oakland Dance Theatre &
OU Repertory Dance Company

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