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JAZZ EDUCATION Classical to jazz

ABCs of concert planning

New alumni chapter installed

Fraternity Mission Statement: Mu Phi Epsilon International Professional Music Fraternity is a coeducational fraternity whose aim is the advancement of music in the community, nation, and world through the promotion of musicianship, scholarship, and music education, with emphasis on service through music. EDITOR Melissa J. Eddy DESIGN & PRODUCTION Corinne Lattimer PROOFREADER Doris Braun Send all material for publication to: Melissa Eddy, or by mail to 220 Link Drive, Kingsland, TX 78639-5262

contents WINTER 2018 | VOLUME 111, ISSUE 4

features 4

Jazz Education


Jazz Pedagogy



Making the leap from classical to jazz education

The Lydian Chromatic Concept

ABCs of concert planning

11 2017 Convention Award Followup

A message from Citation of Merit winner Rob Kapilow

14 Foundation

All materials submitted for publication become the property of Mu Phi Epsilon. Requests for return are accepted and must be accompanied with a self-addressed stamped envelope. Electronic transmissions are preferred. Photos must be a minimum of 300 dpi. Deadlines for submissions: Summer — May 1 Fall — August 15 Winter — December 1 Spring — February 15 Change of address, renewals, notice of deceased members, requests for extra copies and subscription requests should be sent to: Mu Phi Epsilon International Executive Office 1611 County Road, B West, Suite 320 St. Paul, MN 55113 toll free: 888-259-1471 fax: 888-855-8670 email: The Triangle is published 4 times per year by Mu Phi Epsilon, International Professional Music Fraternity. Member, Professional Fraternity Association. (ISSN 0041-2600)(Volume 111, Issue 4)

16 Chapter News

Subscription price is $20.00 per year. Single copies are $8.00. Periodicals postage paid at St. Paul, MN and at additional mailing offices. Printed in the United States of America.


POSTMASTER: Send all changes of address to: Mu Phi Epsilon, 1611 County Road, B West, Suite 320,St. Paul, MN 55113.

Meet two 2017 scholarship winners

Our oldest new member; Roanoke Valley Alumni chapter installed

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Bookshelf: Piano music of John Cage arranged for guitar Collegiate Connection: Near sight Alumni Corner: Encouragement

departments 3 18 20 22 23

President’s Message Applause / Encore Final Notes District Directors Directory Executive Officers Directory

© 2018 Mu Phi Epsilon. All rights reserved. On the cover: Jazz musicians © Afroto | Top left: Zack Carlson conducts a 2017 convention choir rehearsal. Photo by Melissa Eddy. Page 4: Chalkboard background texture © Hanohiki | Page 5: Jazz art paper on blackboard © Natanael Alfredo Nemanita Ginting | Page 7: Jazz Trio Musicians © Spart Media Spartmedia | Page 8: Vintage vegas show typography. © Hobbitfoot | Page 9: Neon font text. Lamp sign. Alphabet . Vector illustration © Hobbitfoot |


I’m sure we have all had our vision tested at one time or another. We hope with each test that our vision will be 20/20 or correctable to 20/20. As we grow older, our vision might change, and our glasses or contacts need to be adjusted to get to that 20/20 outcome. We don’t take chances with our vision. Checking it annually is a way to monitor our eyesight and maintain healthy eyes.

Every three years at our triennial convention, Mu Phi Epsilon checks its vision, makes adjustments, and plans on how we can keep it 20/20. It is especially appropriate to begin thinking about our next exam now, since our next convention will be in the year 2020: a perfect time to make sure our fraternity’s vision is still 20/20.

Let’s take this first year of the triennium to check our near sight. What are our chapters doing for our schools in the name of music, and for our fraternity? How can we reach out to unaffiliated members in our area? How can we strengthen our chapters? What new things could you try, and what traditions do you cherish? How can we work together, collegiates and alumni, to build strong chapters while providing support for all our members? Does your chapter have ideas that work? Are you looking for ideas that work? Let’s make it a 2018 resolution to post those great ideas on our fraternity’s Facebook pages to share with each other. By making our core stronger, we’ll be equipped to move on to…

2018-19, when we can check our far vision by reaching out to our wider communities. How is your chapter reaching out to local populations to share the gift of music? Are there ideas you would like to see happen, but you need the support from all of us? Look farther to our politicians (local and national) to encourage and ensure that continued support for the arts remains in their focus! Can you contribute to building stronger towns, cities, counties, and states through music? Then start getting ready, because 201920 will bring us to our 2020 convention (sooner than you think!). Will we perfect our vision of what it means to be a Mu Phi and to advance music in our communities, nation, and world?

It’s so exciting to know that music continues to inspire us and challenge us to reach for the stars. Let us know of your plans and successes this year so we can all celebrate our near sight for Mu Phi Epsilon! It’s that time of year when many of us think of new beginnings. Keeping our near sight the focus, are there new things your chapters could try? What traditions do you want to continue? How can we improve on what we do, perhaps adjust our goals, or just keep on going? How can we reach toward perfection?

Rosemary Ames International President

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Triennial Theme: 20/20 Vision See President's Message and Collegiate Connections for more about the triennial theme.

Read an interactive version of this issue online at!

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FROM CLASSICAL TO JAZZ EDUCATION: MAKING THE LEAP One of the most important aspects of my bass teaching jobs in several Southern California high schools and middle schools is trying to convince classically trained educators that jazz is not a scary subject and is highly rewarding to young musicians when approached properly. Some of the most competent music teachers I know recoil at the mention of jazz. This is not due to aversion or snobbishness, but to lack of experience in teaching it, not knowing where to start, and a sense that jazz is unapproachable for classically trained teachers. Because of this recurring phenomenon, I have put together some thoughts on how music educators can get started in jazz and some tips for teaching beginning jazz students.

Listening is key

The object of teaching Improvise to explore classically trained educators improvisation is to Many feel intimidated by the need to teach improvisation and the bar of make students proficiency set by students in highcomfortable with achieving jazz programs featured at festivals and conferences. This taking chances reluctance has more to do with the educator’s ego than teaching ability. The musically object of teaching improvisation is not to

First, and most important, is the concept of listening. Jazz is not an art form that can be taught from a book, lecture, or sheet music. Educators need to listen in order to develop a working knowledge of jazz stylings in a practical rather than academic sense. For example, many educators rely on the often-taught idea that a swung eighth note is derived from eighth note triplets, with the middle triplet not being articulated. A director who has developed a knowledge of styles through listening will recognize that swung eighth notes cannot be notated precisely because styling can change drastically depending on any number of circumstances, including the influences of individual players. This creates problems in explaining simply a deceptively complex concept. 4

I suggest beginning with the triplet explanation, but reinforce it with listening assignments that will inform the students’ ears. As the year progresses, use the listening assignments during rehearsal as common references to explain how the band should play specific phrases. Over time, the students will forget the overlyspecific triplet concept and instead develop an innate understanding of what they are trying to imitate. Many readily available resources list classic jazz recordings that will work well for this strategy. Picking recordings in the same styles of a band’s repertoire is the most effective way to create useful references for both students and educator.

develop jazz prodigies but to make students more comfortable with taking chances musically and to help them further understand the art they are learning to perform. Don’t attempt to compare a student’s improvisation to that of jazz greats, or even to their more advanced peers. Instead encourage the student to try new things, explore, and make it a fun process. A beginning improvisation educator’s ability is not so much demonstrated by what his or her students can achieve as by what they are willing to try. The education of beginning

improvisers must be focused on the value of the process, as there is no way to assign meaningful value to the result.

Use your existing skills

When it comes to jazz, educators tend to undervalue the skills they already have that they can apply to their jazz program. Many basic musical concepts can be overlooked if an educator feels overwhelmed by an unfamiliar subject. Pitch, rhythm, and ensemble listening skills are all vital components in jazz education, just as they are in classical training. While there are many nuances to jazz that separate it from other traditions, these core concepts remain. Educators can still lean into their primary expertise while developing a jazz program. There are only twelve notes, after all, and they are the same regardless of the style they are played in. Many great resources are available to educators seeking a better understanding of jazz, and many of them are free. Just a little bit of research will unearth a plethora of opinions and strategies on how to teach jazz, and it is up to educators to choose what fits best with their students. Jazz is an incredibly rewarding art form for students who don’t always have opportunities to be expressive, and it is easily integrated into pre-existing classical programs. All it takes is an educator deciding to give it a try.

About the author

Andrew Martelle (Beta Alpha, right) is a Southern California bassist and music educator. He specialized in jazz performance at Fullerton College with Roger Shew before transferring to Cal State Fullerton where he studied under Luther Hughes. While in school, Andrew performed with notable and varied artists such as Bob Mintzer, George Cables, Francisco Torres, Justo Almario, Doc Severinsen, Doug Tornquist, Jean Ferrandis, and the Talich String Quartet. Andrew has played professionally with Bill Cunliffe and Freda Payne, and he is active in the Southern California jazz scene. He maintains a private bass studio in addition to teaching at local high schools and middle schools. Contact him at

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It is rare to see an art form more devoured by conjecture, mysticism, and anecdotal pedagogy then the art form called jazz. It is so muddled that a landmark publication from 1954, George Russell’s Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization, is largely ignored or unknown, even though its prognostic ideals are so ingrained in jazz pedagogy that they have become fundamental pillars of the art. The Lydian Chromatic Concept (LCC) not only offered a new theory on harmonic motion in tonal harmony, but also stressed the conception of harmony as both horizontal (each chord relating to the chords around it) and vertical (each chord simultaneously functioning in multiple keys and modes), allowing for greater expression when conceiving jazz solos. Russell’s theories on polymodality were both a result of earlier musical works and the igniter of modal jazz. His theory is now so prevalent in jazz that the original work is often ignored. One must first consider the timing in which Russell’s book was published. In the 1950s, jazz pedagogy as we understand it now was in its infancy. A reliance on more traditional verbal and apprenticeship styles of education was sufficient for most performers. As the music became more complex and more

About the author

Billy Gene Sanders (Alpha Delta) likes to say he came to music the long way around, having spent most of his adult life in other professional pursuits. He’s been a soldier, EMT, legal clerk, lab technician, truck driver, produce manager, and salesman for a large musical instrument distributor. He has lived in Europe and Asia and traveled extensively. He is now fulfilling his dream as a professional musician through teaching, performing with various jazz and chamber groups, and as a pit musician playing anything with frets. He is completing a Bachelor of Music degree with an emphasis in jazz studies at California State University-Sacramento. Contact him at 6

popular during the post-war period, that system began to change, and Russell arrived with the first book on jazz theory.

A new take on tonal theory

The LCC was a new take on not only jazz conception but tonal theory of music in general. The LCC is based on the idea of a chord scale relationship that is now used in almost all jazz pedagogy. The idea is that there is a scale which sounds like any type of given chord. While that concept is easy to comprehend with diatonic harmonies, where one can assume that tonic scales of each key relate to all chords presented, in the LCC this is not the case. The problem is one of superimposition, the idea that one chord is related to its own individual scale and at the same time related to multiple other scales through the relationship of harmonic function. An A major chord could be the tonic of A major, the subdominant of E major, or the dominant chord of D major. While that was not necessarily a new concept, Russell’s Lydian conception was fresh and more complex.

Since the G A B C tetrachord is the closest to the given tonic, one can observe the G A B C tetrachord as being the same tetrachord in both C major and in the scale relating to the fifth of C, G major. That similarity allows one to observe the second tetrachord of G major, D E F# G, which by ending on the fifth of C major becomes a logical choice for the second tetrachord with the best relationship to C major. Thus, in Russell’s words, “With the major scale a fifth above a major chord being accepted as its closest related scale in a vertical harmonic sense, it follows that the Lydian Mode of the major scale a fifth above a major chord will even better suit the tonality of the major chord. Thus for instance the Lydian mode of the G major scale (C D E F# G A B) agrees completely with the tonic and the tonality of C major chord and, therefore, logically become the C Lydian Scale.” In the most broad and simple terms, the concept transfers the original relationship of the Ionian mode to the Lydian mode, so now all diatonic chord relations are in the Lydian mode.

The Lydian Chromatic Concept was not only a new take on jazz conception but on tonal theory of music in general

LCC summarized

The Lydian concept is as follows. The major scale is comprised of two tetrachords; the first in C major is C D E F. According to the LCC, this depicts more accurately the F major scale because of the half step between E and F (or “ti do” in solfege). The second tetrachord is G A B C, now representing our initial tonic chord C. At this point the first tetrachord is less related to C major then one would prefer. Now one must find a better relationship to define the C major chord more accurately.

The most famous use of the LCC was during the post-bop period in jazz. Many jazz artists were reacting to the years of bebop and hard bop and now were looking for other outlets and sources of musical conception. The album Kind of Blue by Miles Davis was emblematic of ideals of the LCC. The song “So What” is the proof of concept.

Suggested Reading: Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization by George Russell, ISBN: 0970373902 The Jazz Theory Book by Mark Levine ISBN: 1883217040 Improvising Jazz by Jerry Coker ISBN: 9781451602708

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The ABCs of planning and preparing for performances are based on my experience as a professor, performing artist, and artistic director/curator of concerts and recitals. These ABCs are most important when you are in the dual role of performer and concert organizer; performers who have management or who perform on established concert series may not need to worry about all of them. Check with your manager or presenter to be sure. If you're the concert organizer, develop a detailed action plan to include pre-concert planning, preparation, performance, and postperformance review. Pre-concert planning includes the following steps.

Concert date(s)

Determine concert date(s). Search the internet to make sure that you do not select a date that conflicts with a competitor’s concert or a major event that could negatively affect the number of concert attendees. Knowing how much time you have to prepare for an upcoming concert will help you determine what you want to program, taking into consideration how quickly you learn and the difficulty of the piece.


If you are performing on an established concert series, they will take care of this. If you are putting on your own concert, you will need to determine where to have the concert, bearing in mind the venue cost, availability, reception facilities, and publicity help. I keep a list of performance venues, their location, contact info, rental cost, box office, pros and cons, and overall experience at each venue.


For collaborative concerts, determine who your collaborators are before you finalize your program. Work with musicians who are a joy to collaborate with. Be clear about compensation arrangements. A written agreement is helpful to avoid any misunderstanding later.



Determine what kind of program you want to give. For example: • Themed concert (e.g. music from a certain part of the world, music related to certain historical or current events) • Single period (e.g. all Baroque) • Multiple periods • Single composer (e.g. all Chopin) • Select pieces you are excited about practicing and that you can master within the available preparation time. Programming pieces that are your teacher’s specialty only works if you genuinely love those pieces and your technique and interpretation abilities are on a similar level as your teacher’s.

The availability of collaborators and the presenter’s preference and taste often dictate the concert program. For example, you may want to play an all Chopin recital, but it was done the prior year and the presenter does not want to repeat. Personally, I prefer multi-genre multimedia programs, something that can attract as many attendees as possible. For example, my Music Behind Barbed Wire concert included original commissioned work, 40s standards, a play, jazz bands, and swing dancers. Determine the program title after you have decided on the pieces, e.g. East Meets West, Around the World in 80 Minutes, Music Behind Barbed Wire, etc.

Program information

If you’re putting together the printed program, especially if you’re writing your own program notes, allow plenty of time to write, design, and print. Be sure to factor in delays, which are almost inevitable.

An established series or other presenter will typically request your program information months in advance so they can properly advertise. They will typically take care of writing program notes and producing the printed program.


Determine how to promote the concert – print, internet, social media, radio or TV announcements, online concert listings, university websites, etc. Some outlets are free, others you must pay for. You can get a lot of mileage out of free media. Start publicity at least two months before the concert. Repeat closer to the concert date.

Have high resolution photos available for print purposes and low-resolution ones for online postings.

Invitations (direct promotion)

Determine whom to invite, by mail or via email, at least two months prior to the performance. Consider sending out Save the Date invites once you have the date set.

Email is most cost-effective if you have email addresses for most of your invitees. Using an email service like Mail Chimp or Constant Contact to send out your invites will streamline the process. Some services are free if your list is small. I keep a list of whom I have invited, their contact info (email addresses and phone numbers,) their past attendance, and how I have notified them (mail, email, or social media.) Sort your invitees by location to avoid promoting to people who live far from the concert venue.


Once the previous items are underway and you have a good idea of your concert expenses, make a budget. This will enable you to set admission prices that are reasonable and still cover costs. If you anticipate that admission won’t cover costs, you will need to seek other revenue sources such as sponsorships. Part II (next issue) will discuss shorter-term planning, preparation, performance day, and post-concert review.


Some concerts include a post-concert Meet the Artist(s) reception. If you plan a reception by yourself or with help, make a detailed reception plan including budget, menu, and helpers for set up and serving. You may find it simpler to have a reception at a restaurant that is willing to donate a portion of the evening’s proceeds to benefit the concert series.

Other personnel

Book other desired or needed personnel well in advance, e.g. photographer, videographer, sound/recording engineer, piano tuner, and page turner. Winter 2018 | THE TRIANGLE 9


Cage – Piano Music Arranged for Guitar By Aaron Larget-Caplan

Aaron Larget-Caplan (Beta, Boston Alumni, ACME) brings piano music of John Cage to the guitar in his new book Cage – Piano Music Arranged for Guitar, published by Edition Peters in November 2017. This is the first collection of John Cage’s piano music arranged exclusively for solo classical guitar.

The pieces are organized in chronological order with the precision of a skilled surgeon. Aaron gives new life to Three Easy Pieces (Round, Duo, and Infinite Canon), A Room, Chess Piece, Dream, and In a Landscape, giving us a little history lesson in John Cage’s piano music. The book begins with Three Easy Pieces. These are not the type of pieces one usually associates with Cage, as they are tonal and have a simple contrapuntal manner and an almost 18th-century feel, minus the seven-measure phrase of Dou. These short pieces open the palate to the entrancing A Room. It has an eerie yet soothing feel played on the guitar, as the performer is directed to play the piece sul tasto. These pieces set the tone for the rest of the book.

Based on Cage’s own painting of a chessboard with music written across it, Chess Pieces becomes just that. Dropping down to D tuning, the music becomes a bit more challenging


yet still captivating. Later one enters Dream, still in D tuning but with the addition of the 5th string dropped to G. In this piece Aaron gives us Cage’s direct instruction to let the notes freely ring beyond their written duration. Unlike the piano, which uses the pedal to make the notes ring, the guitar has a natural resonance, making it an ideal instrument for Cage’s piano music. Dream conveys a sense that one is literally in a dream, as the ringing of the notes and the use of guitar harmonics lend the piece a twilight feel, almost like when one is having a lucid dream.

About the Reviewer Julio J. Sequeira (Gamma Sigma, Palos Verdes/South Bay Alumni) is a guitarist and a public school instrumental music teacher in Los Angeles, CA. He is also an MM in Teaching and Learning candidate at the Flora L. Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California, where he plays in the Thornton Guitar Orchestra under the direction of William Kanengiser.

The book finishes with In a Landscape. Again we are instructed to let the notes ring, to create a dreamy effect on the guitar. For the first time in the book, Aaron gives us fingerings for this passage, taking out a lot of guesswork. The previous pieces intentionally do not include fingerings or suggestions so the performer can find his or her own way, but any serious guitar student and performer will have no problem working out fingerings.

Aaron’s book adds to the growing number of works originally composed for other instruments but arranged for guitar. It’s a perfect union, as the guitar carries itself nicely to play the minimalistic yet captivating music. The collection is available internationally through Editions Peters or local music dealers. This masterful grouping of contemporary piano music arranged for solo guitar is a must-have book, an important addition to any serious guitarist’s collection. Visit Aaron Larget-Caplan (left) online at

Piano Music Arranged for Guitar Item Number: EP68585 Format: Sheet Music Number of Pages: 20 Format: 232 x 303 Instrumentation: Solo Guitar $22.95 Publisher: Edition Peters Publication Date: 20/10/2017 Barcode: 9790300759852 ISMN: 9790300759852 Available from Edition Peters

CONVENTION AWARD FOLLOWUP On December 3, following his performance of “What Makes It Great - Symphony #40, Mozart,” the Boston Alumni chapter and members of the Beta chapter presented Rob Kapilow with the 2017 Citation of Merit recognition from Mu Phi Epsilon. Members talked with Rob about what makes Mu Phi Epsilon so special. Those in attendance were (left to right): Beverly Abegg (Boston Alumni), Caroline Frost (Boston Alumni president), Ian Wiese (Beta president), Rob Kapilow, Rosemary Ames (International President), Devan Freebairn (Beta), Yanchen Ye (Beta), YuhBoh Feng (Beta). Not pictured: Seth Burkhart (Beta).

A Message from Rob Kapilow 2017 Citation of Merit winner To the members of Mu Phi Epsilon,

First let me say how honored I am to be awarded your Citation of Merit and how sorry I was not be able to be with you [at the convention]. I would truly have loved to join all of you in Colorado, as your goals of advancing music in the community, nation, and the world, with an emphasis on service, are so closely aligned with my own. Ironically it is the launching of a brand-new, community engagement project—turning one of Canada’s most famous sculptures (Louise Bourgeois’ “Maman”) into music—that [kept] me away. I would not have missed your convention for anything less.

Shortly after the premiere of my setting of Dr. Seuss’s Green Eggs and Ham, I became a G. Schirmer composer, and I still remember my first meeting with Susan Feder, who at the time was G. Schirmer’s president. She looked at my schedule for the season, which included conducting, composing, writing, accompanying, lecturing, and hosting a radio series on NPR, and said quizzically, “Now what is it that you do?” Living as we do in an extraordinarily specialized, “siloed” world, these activities all looked separate to her, but to me all they were all part of one mission. Walt Whitman said, “To have great poets, there must be great audiences,” or in my version, “to have great music, there must be great listeners.”

Creating a world of great listeners has always been my mission, whether I am speaking, composing, conducting, performing, or lecturing. Though at first, this mission was solely focused on changing how people listened to music, in recent years, I have expanded the mission to focus on listening in general. An enormous amount of the world’s problems—both person-to-person and nation-to-nation—are in many ways the result of an inability to listen. People, parties, and countries have become so polarized that communication across the divides that separate us has become more and more difficult. When I was composing my symphony for the 200th anniversary of the Louisiana Purchase, I came across a Native-American proverb that became the heart of the work: “As you go the way of life, you will see a great chasm. Jump. It is not as wide as you think.” The chasm between classical music and the public may seem to be enormous, but if my career has taught me anything, it is that if we can truly learn to listen—learn to jump—the chasm is not as wide as you think. Thank you for this citation. All best, Rob Kapilow

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As we move forward in the Spring semester and on into 2018, I would like to address our theme for this year and the next three years, our triennium. With the theme “20/20,” we are meditating on our impact and purpose leading up to our next international convention. I hope you’ll read the President’s Message in this issue for more details. This year, we want you to focus on your chapter’s operation, morale, and your impact to the fraternity and your school. Are you doing everything you can to support your chapter’s activities and members? Are you organized and professional in your promotions and interactions? Have you identified the weaknesses in your chapter and developed a plan to address them? Have you identified the strengths of your chapter and reinforced ways to maintain them? Are you actively seeking greater diversity in your chapter? Are you wisely managing your funds? Are you encouraging each other daily? Are your officers following through on their obligations year after year? Are your recruitment exercises fruitful, informative, fun, and professional? These are just some of the questions you can use to address the strength of your chapter. You should also assess what more you can do to address needs of your music school and the students it supports. Since colleges and universities differ quite a bit, this will depend on your circumstances. For smaller schools, it might include additional academic or logistical support activities, and ways to help faculty or school events. For larger schools, it might mean an opportunity to host events, provide community service or outreach, plan service to honor faculty and staff, and carry out recurring projects where needs are identified.

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At the 2017 convention, Allison Stickley (left) accepted Beta Alpha's award as the year's PSW Outstanding Collegiate Chapter. Jenny Smith made the presentation.

An important goal I have this year is to keep things simple, while making sure to be thorough. I encourage you all to do the same.

Don’t forget to stay in touch with your district director, local alumni, and of course, keep track of everything your chapter is accomplishing, so you can tell me all about it in your annual reports.

Best wishes to all for a productive and insightful 2018!

Jenny 12

Jenny congratulates SE1 District Director Marshall Pugh on his award as 2017 DD of the Year.




Hello, Alumni! By the time you read this, we will be more than halfway through the 2017-18 Mu Phi year, past Founders Day celebrations, the winter Holidays… and, if you’re like me, trying to keep New Year’s resolutions! In these past several months I have learned much about the many alumni chapters in our Mu Phi family, and have been impressed and inspired by your activities in Music, Friendship, and Harmony. The Founders Day observances, performances at local retirement communities, assistance to collegiate chapters, and local music-based scholarship programs (to name a few) demonstrate your creativity and loyalty in Mu Phi Epsilon.

Whether it’s New Year’s resolutions or anything else, encouragement can help! I appreciate your encouragement in keeping me on task in your service. And as we look forward to spring and beyond, I encourage you to: •

• •

Make membership-building a continuous priority, whether helping facilitate collegiate transition to alumni membership, or through initiating qualified candidates who are not members of a professional music fraternity (what used to be called Special Election). Consider and develop a plan on how to market your chapter, based on your local music scene and what you can uniquely offer a prospective member. (Re-) connect with other alumni chapters who would appreciate a quick hello, e-mail, or copy of your chapter newsletter. (Re-) connect with local collegiate chapters. In addition to offering wonderful ideas and advice, Jenny Smith’s “Collegiate Connection” column can serve as a starting point on how alumni chapters can supplement and uplift collegiates in their efforts. And don’t be afraid to seek advice or expertise from collegiates when it comes to creating and using online tools like websites and social media! Apply for the Foundation’s Helen Haupt Alumni Chapter Project Grant. Dues-paying members can also apply for individual grants and scholarships in a variety of musical categories. For more information, go to (Deadline was March 1. If you didn't make this year's deadline, put it on your calendar now for next year.) Schedule a booking of the fraternity’s Concert Artist, clarinetist Katsya Yuasa. Mind deadlines for reports and updates. In particular, I hope you submitted your revised chapter bylaws to Eligibility Advisor Terrel Kent by March 1. Contact International Executive Secretary-Treasurer Lane Velayo to help resolve website access/functionality issues on the website.

Charlotte Brown (right) presented the Outstanding Alumni Chapter of the Year award to the MinneapolisSt. Paul chapter, represented by Sandy Saliny, at the 2017 convention.

Delegates gathered for one of several alumni chapter workshops at the convention.

I continue to look forward to reading, hearing, and being encouraged by the work you all do for Mu Phi Epsilon!

Winter 2018 | THE TRIANGLE 13



The articles on these two pages are excerpted and updated from the winners’ acknowledgment letters to the Mu Phi Epsilon Foundation.

Recording music by Mu Phis and other American composers By Rachel Evangeline Barham (Delta Nu, Washington DC Alumni)

Words cannot adequately express how grateful I am to the Foundation for choosing my project for the Brena Hazzard Voice Scholarship. I am delighted that the Foundation agreed with me about the importance of bringing to light some American music that has been neglected in the recorded realm.

I used the funds to make a commercially viable recording of unrecorded and under-recorded songs by four great American song composers, two of whom are Mu Phi Epsilon members (Winifred Hyson and the late Amy Beach). In particular, Winifred’s cycle Songs of Job’s Daughter has never been recorded, despite the fact that (as quoted from the publisher) it was “a prize winner in the 1971 Mu Phi Epsilon Composition Contest, and was the required selection for sopranos in the 1980 Mu Phi Sterling Staff Competition.” Besides these credentials, they are simply good songs, full of color and variety. Other songs are by Virgil Thomson and Richard Hundley. I hope that this recording project will lead a wider audience to discover these wonderful American songs.

Recording took place in August 2017. I was fortunate to secure the brilliant pianist Jeremy Filsell to collaborate with me ( We recorded in the lovely acoustics of Spencerville (Maryland) Seventh-Day Adventist Church, with Mark Willey as the recording engineer. These top professionals (and my friends) made the recording process both efficient and pleasurable. Other friends are serving as producer and graphic designer. I used the scholarship funds for voice lessons, having one song transposed, getting recording rights, and production costs. We produced a master to send to potential publishers late last year.

My own appreciation of this music and poetry deepened greatly as I practiced and did research for the CD liner notes. I think it is fitting that there is a small California tie-in to honor Brena Hazzard and the Los Angeles Alumni Chapter: Amy Beach’s song “Meadowlarks” is a setting of the poem by Ina Coolbrith, California’s first poet laureate.

I have had an active professional performing career as a solo and ensemble singer in the Washington, DC area for around sixteen years. Much of what I do – what any musician does – involves time spent on scheduling, publicity, practicing, day jobs, administration, and all the work that goes into what is often a one-time performance. I think every musician questions from time to time whether all that energy is worth it. This award from the Foundation affirmed that what I am doing matters, and that I am not the only one who thinks this repertoire is good and needs to be heard.


Summer study in the land of Mozart By Cordelia Brand (Phi Omicron)

Thank you to the Foundation for a generous 2017 summer study scholarship. Funds from the scholarship went towards my flights to and from the festival I attended in Austria. I was excited to fly to Graz last July to attend the American Institute of Musical Studies Orchestra program. 

I have always wanted to study music in Europe surrounded by rich cultural history. One example of many unique musical experiences I had last summer was a short train ride to Mozart’s house in Salzburg – it was inspiring. To learn about famous classical composers in the city where they worked, and also to experience where they grew up, gave me a new perspective on classical music. Being immersed in a culture where classical music is highly appreciated and integrated was incredible. The musical training – working with high-level colleagues and renowned European conductors – was invaluable. In the future, I may audition for orchestras in Austria and Germany, so this program provided me with the best resources, such as audition seminars and German language classes, to start me on that track.

Top of page: Cordelia Brand. Counterclockwise from lower left, above: Concert at Stefaniensaal in Graz (photo by AIMS staff); viola section of orchestra (Cordelia at far right); Mariatrost church in Graz; Cordelia enjoying local cuisine.

Winter 2018 | THE TRIANGLE 15


Shirley Prusky Shapiro initiated 69 years after first invitation Submitted by Carolyn Frost, Beta Epsilon, Boston Alumni President At her home in Concord, Massachusetts, Shirley Shapiro realized a sixty-nine-year dream when she was initiated into Mu Phi Epsilon on November 2, 2017. International President Rosemary Ames and Boston Alumni President Carolyn Frost presided while chapter members assisted. “This is something I wanted to do ever since I declined membership so long ago. I wanted to be welcomed and today I have what I wished for,” Shirley Shapiro told her new fraternity sisters after her initiation.

Unfulfilled dream

In 1948 at Boston University, piano performance major Shirley Prusky was invited to join Phi Upsilon. However, when she learned that the chapter would not invite African American student musicians, some of whom were her friends, she took a stand and rejected her invitation. Shortly after graduation, Shirley married Jacob (Jack) Shapiro and set her piano playing aside to support her husband’s career in nuclear physics and to raise a family.

In the 1950s, the family relocated to Rochester, New York, and Shirley once again tried to join Mu Phi at the Eastman School of Music. She recalls being told that her candidacy would be reviewed, but she would need to give another senior recital. Shirley felt that it would be impossible to prepare for a recital with the obligations of her family and household. She later settled into a satisfying career teaching second and fourth grades in the Boston city schools.

Welcomed at last

Last year, ninety-year-old Shirley shared her story and her continued longing to join Mu Phi Epsilon with her nephew Mark Shapiro, a music director, conductor, and professor in the New York City area. He promptly contacted the fraternity’s International Executive Office and was referred to the Boston Alumni chapter, which responded immediately and arranged for Shirley’s initiation. The chapter was thrilled to welcome her and make her dream come true.

International President Rosemary Ames researched fraternity documents of the twentieth century and found no evidence of discrimination. However, given the civil rights issues of the times, it is possible some chapters inappropriately restricted their membership. Today, Mu Phi Epsilon is proud of the fraternity’s diversity, inclusiveness, and welcoming spirit.

Top: Shirley Shapiro after graduation from Boston University. Left: Shirley with Boston Alumni members after her initiation. From left: Rosemary Ames, Pat Callan, Maria-Pia Antonelli, Shirley Shapiro, Beverly Abegg, Carolyn Frost.


Roanoke Valley Alumni Chapter Installed December 9, 2017

The first snow of the season and International President Rosemary Ames arrived simultaneously in Roanoke, Virginia, for the early December installation of the Roanoke Valley Alumni chapter. Rosemary’s chauffeur for the day was charter member Liza Moles. Everything but the road was snow-covered and the city sparkled in holiday lights, lending a festive vibe to the event.

There are twelve charter members in the Roanoke Valley chapter, but due to the weather, only half of them could attend the ritual. The remaining members were to sign the charter at their next gathering, hopefully not on another snowy day. The group gathered for the late afternoon installation at the Thrasher Memorial United Methodist Church in Vinton, Virginia, a Roanoke suburb. Several Alpha Zeta collegiates from Radford University were honored to assist with the ritual; they also participated in the recital and enjoyed the reception. Most of the new alumni chapter members are Alpha Zeta graduates, and both groups are excited to continue a great collaboration.

To open the ceremony, the Alpha Zetas led the group in singing “Ode to Joy” with Mu Phi words. Everyone also sang “The Creed” and “Our Triangle” during the ritual. Alpha Zeta members Alex Lyons (president), Zoe Jones, and Maya Johnson served as ritual assistants. Alumni chapter officers were installed immediately after the chapter installation. After photos and congratulations, all present enjoyed an inspiring musicale followed by a tasty reception. Adam McAllister (Alpha Zeta) is the new alumni chapter’s first president. International President Ames says, “With the combined talent and graciousness from the Roanoke Valley Alumni and the Alpha Zeta chapter at Radford University, I am sure these members will remain an active, vital part of Mu Phi Epsilon. I encourage them to reach out to other Mu Phis in the area, of whom there are many.” Welcome, Roanoke Valley Alumni Chapter!

Winter 2018 | THE TRIANGLE 17


advocate, Mila is serving her second appointed term as a commissioner on the Texas Commission on the Arts. Vocalist and educator Elma Mae Henderson (Theta, International First Vice President 1998-2003) was recently honored with the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award, bestowed upon Marquis Who’s Who biographees who have demonstrated leadership, excellence and longevity in their fields. She has been listed since 2006. Elma Mae lives in southern Californa, where she sings with local ensemble Prime Time Choraliers. She was profiled in Not Born Yesterday magazine in November and celebrated her ninetieth birthday in January.

Music educator and clarinetist Ashley Bouras (Phi Tau, Dallas Alumni President, District Director SC2) co-directed a McKinnney Youth Orchestra Youth Theatre production of “Heathers the Musical: H.S. Edition” in January (photos above and left). Ashley is music director of MYO, a community performing arts organization for youth in Plano, Texas. Ashley has another production in process at press time, as she and her husband await the birth of their first child.

Music educator and arts advocate Mila Gibson (Alpha Nu) was named Outstanding Female Citizen of 2017 by the city of Sweetwater, Texas, where she resides. She was recognized for her volunteer work to create a yearly, multi-genre concert series for the community, among other musical activities. Mila previously received similar awards in Amarillo where she lived for many years, taught music at the university level, and founded the Amarillo Opera. A passionate arts


Pianist and singersongwriter Angela Parrish (Phi Pi) performed in Wichita in November, and Wichita Alumni chapter members turned out to support her concert “From Kansas to La La Land,” a mix of roots, Americana, blues, and jazz. A native Kansan, Angela now lives, writes, and performs in Los Angeles, where she is active in film and on stage. Her voice is featured in the song “Another Day of Sun” from the 2016 Oscar-winning movie La La Land, and she released her debut LP Faithful and Tall in 2015. Pianist Nicholas Susi (Xi, Affiliated) has won the American Prize in Piano, 2017-18. The prize was announced in January. His LP “Scarlatti Now” was also awarded a Special Judges Citation for best concept album. The American Prize, founded in 2009, is a series of nonprofit competitions for U.S. performing artists, ensembles, and composers, based on submitted recordings. Nicholas also was the 2015-17 National Federation of Music Clubs Young Artist, first runner-up in the 2014 Mu Phi Epsilon International Competition, and winner of the international 2013 Klavierfestival Rösrath competition. An active performer, clinician, adjudicator, and speaker, Nicholas recently completed his doctorate in piano performance at the University of Michigan.

Conductor Jeannine Wagner (Phi Nu, Los Angeles Alumni) led a 23-member choral-orchestral ensemble from the Roger Wagner Choral Institute on a Legacy Tour to Japan and South Korea in November and December. The tour honored Jeannine’s father, the late renowned choral conductor Roger Wagner. Watch for more about Jeannine in a future Triangle.


Congratulations to Beta Eta (below), which reactivated on December 3, 2017. Under the leadership of chapter president Sam Troxell and chapter advisor Danny Howdeshell, six new members were initiated. All are officers: vice president Jamie Piazza, treasurer Brandon Garcia, recording secretary Pauline Guerzon, alumni secretary Georgia Friend, and chorister Toran Davenport. The chapter looks forward to bringing in additional members during its February rush.

An Announcement from the Editor

Serving Mu Phi Epsilon as International Editor for more than twelve years has been a fantastic experience. I’ve learned deeply about our fraternity, interviewed fascinating members, made countless musical friends, and put my writing and editing abilities to their highest use. Editing The Triangle has been a highlight of my career.

But as the saying goes, all good things come to an end someday. I feel the pull of retirement and am aware that my enthusiasm for starting each issue is not what it used to be, and should be. It’s time for new energy, fresh perspective, and different creative ideas. Therefore, I’ve informed the International Executive Board that I will retire from the Editor position within the next two years. I will continue until a successor is selected or through the end of 2019, whichever comes first. So now the search is on. The IEB seeks candidates with excellent writing, editing, planning, and organizational skills. Experience with other publications (chapter newsletters count!) is a plus, self-direction is a must, and passion for all things Mu Phi is a given. The International Editor job description will be updated soon and posted on the website. International Editor is a compensated position.

At its November meeting, Wichita Alumni celebrated a triple header: Founders Day, the chapter’s 70th anniversary, and member Ruth Scheer’s 70th year as a Mu Phi. Ruth was honored with the fraternity’s 2017 Orah Ashley Lamke award, and since she wasn’t at the convention to receive it, the chapter presented her framed award certificate at the meeting. Then Ruth returned the favor by providing entertainment for the festivities, performing (from memory) a complete program of music she had composed, including hymns, lullabies, and longer works. Chapter favorites were “Kansas Southwind People,” an operetta performed in part by Ruth’s daughter Laurie Little (Epsilon Phi), and a morality spoof entitled “Devil of Temptation, Giant of Selfishness, and Witch of Hate,” starring her daughters Dana DeKalb (Phi Pi), Allison Peterson (Alpha Kappa), and Valerie Sullivan (Phi Pi).

Could you or someone you know be a candidate? Start spreading the word! Interested but wondering what the job entails? For the spring Triangle I plan to write a candid, detailed, and hopefully entertaining article from “behind the scenes.” Meantime, I will gladly answer questions about the position; just email Want to give it a trial run? Consider becoming an assistant writer/editor; I will train and mentor. Email me if you’re intrigued. Now back to editing …

In music, friendship, and harmony,

elissa M Melissa J. Eddy International Editor

Winter 2018 | THE TRIANGLE 19



Helen Ruth Brisco Cuccia Gamma Sigma, October 1, 1998 Palos Verdes/South Bay Alumni Died September 9, 2017 Pianist, vocalist. An accomplished pianist and soprano, Ruth taught piano and voice in her large private studio for over thirty years and at the Holy Trinity School. She sang professionally with the Pacific Chorale, performing with them at Disney Hall, Carnegie Hall, and venues throughout Europe. She was also a church musician. An active Mu Phi, Ruth served in several chapter offices, as District Director PSW, and as Third Vice President/Alumni Advisor (2014-17).

A remembrance of Ruth Cuccia

By International President Rosemary Ames Ruth never missed an opportunity to sing, whether at church, in recitals, or with fellow Mu Phis in her chapter or at conventions. Ever since joining Mu Phi Epsilon, Ruth was an active, involved member, both locally and nationally. She served Palos Verdes/South Bay Alumni as president and in many other offices, and she was the PSW District Director for eight years. She was just completing her first three-year term as Third Vice President/Alumni Advisor on the International Executive Board when we lost her to brain cancer, much too soon.

I will miss Ruth’s calm demeanor, humor, and gentle, guiding spirit that contributed to productive business


Ruth at the 2014 convention.

meetings. She often pulled us back from board discussions to remember what is important and what makes us unique – a collection of diverse, music-loving people who share friendships and music with ease. Ruth’s family always came first with her, and she considered her Mu Phi family right up there with her husband John, two sons, and grandchildren. Ruth was a dedicated Mu Phi and a friend to many. Her spirit continues to guide me, and I will miss her wise, thoughtful counsel.

FINAL NOTES Yvonne Marie Allen Gamma, April 12, 1995 Ann Arbor Alumni Died August 2, 2017 Music educator, vocalist, pianist, composer. Yvonne was a longtime member of the Ann Arbor Society for Musical Arts and an active volunteer musician in her community.

Helen Nadine Graham Freeborn Sigma, November 1, 1949 Palos Verdes/South Bay Alumni Died November 24, 2017 Cellist, music educator. Helen taught in elementary and high schools in Westminster, California.

Mary Jane Kessen Haney Mu Omicron, March 17, 1946 Cincinnati Alumni Died June 1, 2017 Choir director. Mary directed choir at St. Antoninus Catholic Church. Betty J. Barkis Houston Xi, April 23, 1947 Indianapolis Alumni Died September 29, 2016 Music educator, choir director. Betty taught middle school music for thirtythree years. She was a church musician and was active in the local woodworking guild.

Frances Courtney Snow Uhden Mu Beta, April 21, 1940 Spokane Alumni Died May 30, 2017 Flutist. Frances played flute in the orchestra and band and was active in many other musical activities. She was a past president of her Mu Phi chapter. Carolyn Combs Yager Omega, May 21, 1950 St. Louis Alumni Died November 8, 2017 Music educator, choral musician. Carolyn taught elementary school vocal music and was a well-known private instructor of violin and piano using the Suzuki method. She sang with the St. Louis Symphony Chorus for thirteen years and was a member of the Bel Canto Chorus.

Send Final Notes to: Ann Gibbens Davis, 7200 3rd Avenue C-134, Sykesville, MD, 21784 | 410-795-9437 |

Alumni at 2017 Convention

Winter 2018 | THE TRIANGLE 21


DISTRICT A1 Stephanie Berry 574 596 8285 DISTRICT A2 Susan Todenhoft 703 323 4772 H 703 509 0224 C


DISTRICT EGL1 Danielle Stoner 585 217 6597 DISTRICT EGL2 Eric Westray 571 239 1809 DISTRICT EGL3 Nancy Jane Gray 330 688 7990


DISTRICT GL1 Susan Owen-Bissiri 734 971 1084 DISTRICT GL2 — OPEN


DISTRICTS EC1 Herbert Jackson 678 577 3637 DISTRICTS EC2 & EC3 Sean Kilgore 317 750 3206


DISTRICT SE1 Marshall Pugh 252 599 2492


DISTRICT SE2 Arietha Lockhart 404 284 7811 DISTRICT SE3 Stephanie Sandritter 407 538 2371 DISTRICT SE4 — OPEN


District SC1 Rachel Reynolds 512 944 3398 DISTRICT SC2 Ashley Bouras 972 765 3252 DISTRICT SC3 — OPEN DISTRICT SC4 Isabel De La Cerda 210 204 6425


DISTRICT C1 Ann Geiler 314 691 7648 DISTRICT C2 Paula Patterson 417 773 1176


DISTRICT NC1 Zack Carlson 218 201 1437 DISTRICT NC2 Liana Sandin 402 483 4657, 402 560 7126


DISTRICT WC1 Chrisalyne Hagood 580 383 8011 Kathleen Jung 580 822 1170 DISTRICT WC2 Kiley Wilson 405 625 5265


DISTRICT PNW1 Sophia Tegart 509 991 4906

DISTRICT PNW2 & PNW3 Michael Lasfetto 971 275 3800


DISTRICT P1 Billy Sanders 209 552 6996 DISTRICT P2 Kira Dixon 408 439 6076


DISTRICT PSW1 Amanda Salmen 818 384 7932 Tanner Wilson 951 515 9680




Rosemary Ames, International President 13 Travis Dr, Framingham, MA 01702 508 872 5818,

ACME Arietha Lockhart (Chair) Beta Gamma, Atlanta Alumni 3159 Springside Crossing Decatur, GA 30034 404 284 7811

Linda Florjancic, President 7959 Wright Road Broadview Heights, OH 44147 216 219 4953

Julia Scherer, 1st VP/Extension Officer 15220 Dearborn St, Overland Park, KS 66223 816 225 2987 Jenny Smith, 2nd VP/Collegiate Advisor 1913 Dana Ct, Irving, TX 75060 214 662 5087 Marcus Wyche, 3rd VP/Alumni Advisor 2729 Nicholson St, #103, Hyattsville, MD 20782 301 484 3652 Rebecca Sorley, 4th VP/Music Advisor 7295 W Road 350 N, Bargersville, IN 46106 317 885 1103 Terrel Kent, 5th VP/Eligibility Advisor 2606 Galvez Street, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70805 225 772 7384 Lane Velayo Executive Secretary-Treasurer International Executive Office 1611 County Road B, West, #320 St. Paul, MN 55113 888 259 1471 Fax: 888 855 8670 Melissa Eddy, International Editor 220 Link Drive, Kingsland, TX 78639 512 217 1264, HONORARY ADVISORY BOARD Katherine Doepke, Phi Beta 825 Summit Ave., Apt 606 Minneapolis, MN 55403 612 377 2043, Lee Clements Meyer, Phi Xi 8101 Club Court Circle, Austin, TX 78759 512 345 5072

Mary Au (Co-Chair) Mu Nu, Los Angeles Alumni 2363 W Silver Lake Dr. Los Angeles, CA 90039 323 666 2603 BYLAWS & STANDING RULES Kurt-Alexander Zeller Mu Chi, Atlanta Alumni 1872 Central Park Loop Morrow, GA 30260 770 961 4400 FINANCE Evelyn Archer, Omega Omega St. Louis Area Alumni 5312 Sutherland Ave. St. Louis, MO 63109 314 481 2361 INTERNATIONAL Marlon Daniel, Mu Xi New York Alumni 45 Tiemann Place, Apt 5F New York, NY 10027-3327 212 641 0305 MUSIC LIBRARIAN & ARCHIVES Wendy Sistrunk, Mu Mu Kansas City Alumni 1504 S. Ash Ave. Independence, MO 64052 816 836 9961

Liana Sandin, Vice President 6321 A Street Lincoln, NE 68510 402 560 7126 Dr. Sophia Tegart, Secretary 225 SW Mountain View St. Apt. B Pullman, WA 99163 509-991-4906 Craig Young, Treasurer 2656 Bluebird Circle Duluth GA 300956 404-857-7045 Zachariah Carlson 405 River Street South #12 Delano MN, 55328 218-201-1437 Dr. Kristín Jónína Taylor 18926 Ontario Street Omaha NE 68130 641 590 0547 Rosemary Ames 13 Travis Drive Framingham, MA 01702 508 872 5818 Liana Sandin, Artist Concert Manager 6321 A Street Lincoln, NE 68510 402 560 7126

Winter 2018 | THE TRIANGLE 23

International Executive Office 1611 County Rd B, West, #320 St Paul, MN 55113 888 259 1471



Clockwise from above: Lacinda Blaswell, Ann Davis, and Sherry Legler enjoy lunch; Isabel De La Cerda and Wednesday Ball in purple; a sign we all wish we had; baritone Matthew Hoch performs at the Honors Luncheon; Melissa Eddy and Lane Velayo hard at work.

Profile for Mu Phi Epsilon

The Triangle, publication of Mu Phi Epsilon music fraternity, Vol. 111, Issue 4, Winter 2018  

In this issue: Jazz Education. Classic to Jazz; ABCs of Concert Planning (Part I), New Alumni Chapter Installed

The Triangle, publication of Mu Phi Epsilon music fraternity, Vol. 111, Issue 4, Winter 2018  

In this issue: Jazz Education. Classic to Jazz; ABCs of Concert Planning (Part I), New Alumni Chapter Installed