DSU upperclassmen prepare for solo music recitals

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After years of refining their musical skills, Dixie State University students are prepared to perform solo for the upcoming music recitals.

DSU’s music department has scheduled eight junior and senior recitals in the Dolores Eccles Fine Arts Center Concert Hall. The first recital started Saturday and continues untilApril 15. As a part of the capstone project, every music major is required to perform solo their senior year for one hour.

“Even though we’re used to playing concerts and rehearsals longer than [one hour], it does take a lot of stamina because it’s just you playing instead of with a group,” said Whitney Alvey, a senior music major from Kanab. “The hour requirement is to make sure you get enough contrasting pieces and have the experience to know what professional musicians are expected to do.”

Glenn Webb, chairman of the music department and assistant professor of music, said students work with their private instructor or professor to select what songs they plan to perform. The student’s playlist has to cover music from the baroque, romantic, classical and contemporary periods.

On top of the musical periods, singers are required to sing in three different languages. Danelle Sullivan, a junior music major from Farmington, said she will be singing in French, German, Italian, English and Russian.

Although students aren’t required to perform their junior year, Sullivan said this gives her an opportunity to share additional material she has learned during her time at DSU. Sullivan is scheduled to perform March 31 at 7:30 p.m.

“We study a lot of music every semester, and in a senior recital, you can’t share everything you’ve learned,” Sullivan said. “You have the option to do a junior recital to prepare yourself for your senior recital and to share more songs that you love.”

Sullivan said she typically practices three to four hours a day, whereas instrumentalists range around five hours or more a day. 

“As a singer, you’re limited by what you physically can do,” Sullivan said. “You would lose your voice if you sang for too long.”

Although practicing for the recital can be time-consuming, Alvey said it’s worth it at the end of the day.

“It’s like meditation,” Alvey said. “It’s the one time of the day when you’re rehearsing where you are just focused on you and the music.”

Alvey said she has been working on her solo bass pieces for the last four years leading up to this recital. Alvey is scheduled to perform April 4 at 7:30 p.m.

“It’s an opportunity for me to showcase [my hard work] to my friends and family,” Alvey said.

To spread the word about their senior recitals, students usually create a Facebook event to invite friends and family. Music majors are also required to create posters to hang around campus to promote their recital date. 

The recital series are free to attend, and the music department offers programs for each recital.