12 GET YOUR BOOTS ON!
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 Kat Braz email@example.com
DESIGN & PRODUCTION Paul Wilson firstname.lastname@example.org
Send all material for publication to: Kat Braz, email@example.com
The Triangle welcomes story suggestions from Mu Phi Epsilon members and friends. Publication selections will be made at the discretion of the editor. Photos must be provided as the original digital file at high resolution. Please include photographer credit information. All photographs are published courtesy of the contributor unless photographer credit is provided.
Deadlines for submissions:
Fall — August 15
Winter — October 15
Spring — February 15
Summer — April 15
Change of address, renewals, notice of deceased members, requests for extra copies and subscription requests should be sent to:
Mu Phi Epsilon Professional Music Fraternity 6510 Telecom Drive, Suite 200 Indianapolis, IN 46278 888-259-1471
The Triangle is published four times per year by Mu Phi Epsilon, International Professional Music Fraternity.
Member, Professional Fraternity Association. (ISSN 0041-2600) (Volume 116, Issue 4)
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© 2023 Mu Phi Epsilon. All rights reserved.
MOVING FORWARD, LOOKING BACK
elcome to 2023! The first month of the year, January, is named for the Roman god Janus. This deity had two faces, one facing forward and one facing backward — allowing him to see both where he had been and where he was going. While we in Mu Phi Epsilon certainly don’t want to be two-faced, we also should attend simultaneously to past experience and to what is coming up in the future. The bridge metaphor that we have been using throughout my term is apt — when you’re crossing a bridge, the span connects where you’ve come from with where you’re going.
This year, the fraternity is engaged in two big projects. One is the oral history being coordinated by PCI. Over the next couple of months, all the members in our database should be contacted by this company with an invitation to participate and to record some of their cherished memories of their experiences in Mu Phi Epsilon. In this way, we hope to document more of our past, of “where we’ve come from,” as a fraternity — and to create a media repository about who we’ve been and what we’ve achieved that will inspire current members in the present and prospective members in the future. I encourage all of you to consider participating in this look back into our past — your past — in Mu Phi Epsilon.
But this year’s most important event will be our look ahead: our 2023 International Convention. At our first face-to-face fraternity-wide gathering since 2017, we will be focusing on “A Bridge Forward” to the fraternity’s future. We will have new experiences, learn new things, meet new friends, hear new music and elect new leadership. I hope we will ask and begin to answer some fundamental questions about what we want our fraternity, and perhaps even convention itself, to be like and to accomplish in the future. Like any well-constructed bridge, our path forward to the future must remain connected to our past if it is to have structural integrity. At the same time, if it doesn’t take us somewhere different from where we started out, it will be the proverbial bridge to nowhere.
The members of your International Executive Board hope that International Convention 2023 will be a time of exploring and discussing exactly where we as a fraternity want to go in the future and what that future should look like, so please be making plans to attend the convention July 19-22, 2023 and to take part in the discussion!
LET’S GO BACK TO THE BOW
Leading an amateur string ensemble channels a love for teaching
ave you ever wanted to lead a group of adult musicians who love to play but never pursued it professionally?
That is exactly how the Fresno, California, group called Back to the Bow came to be. One of our founding members reminded me at a recent practice that 2022 was the group’s 20th anniversary.
Back to the Bow began as small group of adult musicians who had played a string instrument in their youth. They were all studying privately again with a local string teacher who encouraged ensemble playing for their own enjoyment. One participant, a doctor, enjoyed playing in ensembles along with his 8-year-old son. He suggested finding someone to lead and rehearse the group on a regular basis. Many ideas were bounced around such as paying the leader, meeting on a weekly basis and finding a venue in which to meet. It was finally decided that we would meet twice a month and Back to the Bow was born.
I volunteered to organize and lead the rehearsals and performances after attending one of their sessions. I also choose the music and find venues where we can perform. The group members suggest venues as well. We have performed for many events, including open houses, private parties, weddings, assisted living facility programs and funerals. We do not get paid, but we happily accept food for our time.
We started off meeting at Vintage Gardens, an assisted living facility where my mother was a resident. The facility asked us to perform for them one evening a month in exchange for a free facility in which to rehearse. We practiced for our monthly performances here or used the residents as a dress rehearsal for upcoming performances at other venues. Over the years, the group has grown from its eight founding members to over 25 string players. Members include both practicing and retired educators, health professionals, administrators, computer techs, construction workers, librarians, agriculture specialists, accountants and even a lawyer.
In December, the Fresno Alumni chapter of Mu Phi Epsilon usually presents a public program. I have been fortunate enough to have the Mu Phi members join Back to the Bow in presenting a joint holiday program to the residents at Vintage Gardens. Fraternity members sing or play holiday arrangements along with Back to the Bow and then we accompany the residents in a sing-along. This is the most enjoyable part for me as I am able to get out amongst the residents and interact with them while the musicians are playing as an ensemble. My goal is for the group to be able to play without a leader.
Our main thrust throughout the years has been to play for assisted living facilities or for patients in the hospital. This was made very difficult with the onset of COVID-19 and the quarantines. We had to stop meeting and stop playing. This was a challenging time for the group. I tried to keep up group morale by sending out an upbeat monthly newsletter with encouraging quotes and updates on the lives of our members. Others told me they appreciated the enthusiasm and inspiration I delivered, in spite of being in a funk myself during the pandemic and quarantine.
Leading Back to the Bow is a way of channeling my love of teaching, playing in various groups and choosing repertoire. I was an elementary and middle school string orchestra teacher before retiring. I choose much of the group’s repertoire from my middle school’s library and suggestions from the group. We like playing “de-rangements” — my term for watered-down versions of the classics — which make for fun sight-reading sessions and accommodate little practice time before a performance. I love the way we can put together a performance with minimal rehearsal time.
In May 2022, after we played a patriotic Memorial Day concert at an assisted living facility, one of the residents came up and spoke to one of our members. The resident said that she had received bad news earlier in the day, and coming to hear us play really lifted her spirits. Another resident mentioned that she really enjoyed our music; that it was nice and soothing and not a loud ruckus like some of the music they hear. Another resident came up to me and told me that her son played the violin. Intrigued, I inquired more. In further conversation with her, I discovered that her son and I know each other, taught together and played in some of the same groups together. What a small world!
One of my favorite venues to play is Vintage Gardens. We have played there for so long that we know many of the residents. One member noticed that there was a certain lady who always sat close enough to be her stand partner. The member asked the resident if she would like to help turn the pages. The
resident very excitedly nodded her head, so as she played the member told the resident when to turn the pages. The resident was very happy to be doing this. The member said that you never realize how much of an impact you make on someone until you see it yourself.
One of the residents at Vintage Gardens was a composer. He really enjoyed it when we came to practice or perform. He was always the first one to show up. He liked us so much that he composed a piece called “Back to the Bow” for us. We had to practice it a few times without him present before we finally played it for him. He was so happy. He told us that he had had a piece performed by a major orchestra in the past. He was our resident composer/arranger until he passed away. A few of the residents or guests even like to conduct the group when I need help. One guest was a retired band director, so I knew he could handle it!
Back to the Bow members enjoy the camaraderie with fellow musicians and the rapport we develop with our audiences. They like that the group is so laid back and everyone is supportive and nonjudgmental. One member even complimented me on my patience with the playing skills of the group. I do it because I love it.
If you enjoy leading and playing in a group of amateur musicians, I highly encourage you to keep your eyes and ears open for the opportunity. There are some willing musicians who can make your dreams come true. They may even become your second family — mine did!
APPLY NOW FOR FOUNDATION GRANTS AND SCHOLARSHIPS
inter Greetings from the Mu Phi Epsilon Foundation Board! My name is Zack Carlson-Giving and as the new president of our board of directors I am excited to share some exciting updates with you!
Before I get to the updates, I want to share a note of gratitude with those who have donated to the Foundation in the last year. Your continued support is what makes it possible for the Foundation to fund the work of our Mu Phi Epsilon siblings. Thank you!
The Foundation Board is thrilled to share that we have added three new grants to our 2023 cycle.
To apply for these new grants, or our long list of existing awards, please visit www.mpefoundation.org. The collegiate chapter with the most completed applications will win a free registration for their chapter representative to attend our convention this year! Members must have paid their dues by December 31, 2022, and submit their application(s) by March 1, 2023. We look forward to seeing you at International Convention in Texas!
Loyally, Zack Carlson-Giving
Early Music Grant ($1,000) will be awarded to an individual for the study of or a project relating to early music. Applicants can be pursuing one or more of the following: study or research, performance, lessons or workshops, or purchase of a period instrument.
Diversity Scholars Grant ($2,000)
will be awarded to traditionally underrepresented and minoritized populations such as BIPOC, AAPI and LGBTQIA+ individuals. Applicants can be pursuing one or more of the following: study or research, performance, lessons or workshops, or projects.
Large Ensemble Grant ($2,000)
will be awarded to an ensemble with at least one member of Mu Phi Epsilon involved in the ensemble. Large ensembles must demonstrate a performance history of at least two years. The Large Ensemble shall consist of 11 or more musicians and shall have a separate conductor. Ensembles with more Mu Phi Epsilon members will be considered to be of particular application strength.
From the Foundation
Upcoming Competition and Scholarship Deadines
More information is available online at mpefoundation.org
The completed official application form, $50 entry fee, online recordings and supplemental materials must be submitted through the online portal on March 1, 2023 by 11:59 p.m. Central Time. Apply at: mpefoundation.org/competitionapplication
• Open to most instruments and voice.
• Entrant must be a current dues-paying member of Mu Phi Epsilon (collegiate, alumni or affiliate member) as of December 31, 2022, and not under contract with professional management at the time of the competition.
• Age: Under the age of 32 as of April 1, 2023.
• Applicants must have appeared in solo recitals and/or with orchestra.
• Past winners of the Mu Phi Epsilon International Competition are not eligible.
Scholarship applications can be individually made online at: mpefoundation.org/grants-and-scholarships
• All applications (except Summer Scholarships) are due on March 1, 2023, by 11:59 p.m. Central Time.
• Summer scholarship applications are due on April 15, 2023, by 11:59 p.m. Central Time.
• All application fees are nonrefundable, even in the case of incomplete applications.
• Applicants must be dues-paying members as of December 31, 2022.
• Applicants may apply for more than one scholarship/grant.
• Previous winners (2019 and prior) are now eligible to apply for the same scholarship or grant. Helen Haupt Alumni Chapter Project Grant and the Wiese-Abegg Collegiate Chapter Project Grant winners may apply annually.
• A Mu Phi Epsilon Foundation scholarship or grant may not be used for everyday living expenses, to repay educational loans or to repay personal debt.
Nominations Sought for the 2023 Orah
Ashley Lamke Award
Orah Ashley Lamke was a charter member of Delta (1905) and later held five national offices. In recognition of her devoted service and dedication to alumni, the 1964 national convention in Lincoln initiated the Orah Ashley Lamke Distinguished Alumna Award, and she was the first to receive it. Since then, her namesake award is given each year to a longtime alumni member who has shown dedication and loyalty at the local level but has not served at the national or international board level.
During convention years, the winner is chosen by the business delegates from the host provinces of the convention. To nominate a member for the 2023 Orah Ashley Lamke Award, please submit a photo and a biography of the nominee (including summary of activities in Mu Phi Epsilon) along with a letter of nomination to International President KurtAlexander Zeller at firstname.lastname@example.org by May 15, 2023.
Election of International Officers Of Mu Phi Epsilon, 2023–26
Mu Phi Epsilon elects new officers to the International Executive Board (IEB) at conventions. It’s an honor and a responsibility to serve the Fraternity as a member of the IEB. Nominations were accepted from chapters and members preceding the convention. In accordance with the International Bylaws of Mu Phi Epsilon, a committee of three members has been appointed to receive names of prospective candidates for International Office and investigate their eligibility and availability.
• if you have questions, please contact Tanner Wilson, Western Region representative, at email@example.com.
COAT OF ARMS
Fraternity’s emblem steeped in symbolism
aving a fraternal coat of arms goes back to heraldic times when knights and houses of royalty would have shields and a literal coat of arms to identify themselves, especially during battles and jousts.
There is always much symbolism and meaning behind what appears on one’s coat of arms. Fraternal and other ceremonial societies have adopted these emblems as a point of connection and pride. Mu Phi Epsilon is no exception and adopted its shield and coat of arms quite early in our existence, during the June 1904 Convention to be exact.
The design has remained unchanged since those first days, with the exception that when Mu Phi voted in 1977 to become a fraternity and admit men to membership, a change was desired to reflect both genders, so that now the scroll of music includes the bass as well as the treble clef.
For those who may not know:
• The background is in our colors — purple and white.
• It is divided into four divisions or “cantons” by a black cross containing 13 gold stars: 13 because we were founded on the 13th of November with 13 members; stars because our aim is high; and gold to denote our true worth.
• Each of the four cantons includes a symbol repeated both in the first and fourth divisions and the second and third showing a scroll of music and our pin or badge.
• Mu Phi Epsilon is indicated by the Greek letters
• The new coat of arms was adapted to be part of our Ritual Cloth in 1983 by Roberta O’Connell (Phi Mu).
These Mu Phi Epsilon chapters celebrated milestone anniversaries in 2022.
Building Bridges to the Students of Today
How music educators can meet students where they are
Kids will be kids. Every kid is the same. As music educators and individuals, we need to understand these statements are problematic. A double-edged sword. In a perfect world, our students could have the same wants and needs; however, the climate of the decade changes, and it influences what is popular and what our students face every day. Students can be like the toys, fashion and technology of the different decades; they change, evolve and/or adapt based on world events and the environment of the life they live in.
For example, with video game consoles, we started in the late 1970s with the Atari, one of the first popularized video game consoles. It was one simple rectangular box with a couple of joystick controllers. As technology advanced and the entertainment mediums changed to include video games rather than board games, newer and different kinds of consoles have developed. The Super Nintendo Entertainment System in the 90s was the first console that had controllers with tons of buttons that had different functions. Modern consules like Wii U and the Nintendo Switch have standard motion sensor technology to track your body’s movement in a variety of games in response to arguments that video games lead to laziness and lack of exercise.
Everything is constantly changing, including human beings. Can we put groups of people together based on age and characteristics? Sure we can. There are archetypes like Generation Z, Millennials and Boomers that society has put people in, different categories based on the world events they have lived through. Even though we have these named generations, it is not a direct answer on who today’s students are, what they are facing and how we can help them. As much as we like to put people in categories, students these days are more diverse than ever, so game plans to teach these students should reflect the differentiation of our students. Before we can figure out who the students are and how to best help them, we as educators need to address the elephant in the room.
The Students Nowadays Attitude
A simple Google search of “students nowadays” brings up pages of results that reflect a generally negative attitude about today’s generation. Whether it be opinions that “Students are not the way they used to be,” or that “Students are ruined due to x,y and z,” it seems society is pessimistic about today’s students. Each generation has gone through events and scenarios in their life that have changed who they are and each generation has their own strengths and shortcomings. Today’s students, raised through the COVID-19 pandemic, are not the worst. They’re different due to changing times and if we want to have the ability to help these students, we need to stop the notion that they are horrible and instead determine how to best teach them.
The Good and The Bad: Factors That Affect the Students of Today
Mind: Students today have gained awareness and understanding of their mental state. Overall mental health has been a big topic and due to many different factors, mental health disorders are increasing. Students are conscious of who they are and are starting to find their own identity and self earlier in age. These identities are becoming more diverse and progressive.
Hands: Technology is more involved in our students’ lives than ever before. More than half of American children now own a smartphone by the age of 11. The student’s mind has changed dramatically in the past few decades, both physically and mentally. As technology evolves, students receive more exposure to digital media rather than the traditional pen and paper.
Backpack: Everyone has a lot of baggage, but today’s students are carrying more than in years past. Adverse childhood events (traumatic events that happen from birth to age 17) are being experienced by more students and the trend is that children are more likely to experience more than one adverse childhood event.
Ball left behind: There is a debate about whether today’s kids are growing up faster or slower. More kids are getting more exposed to adult/mature content due to media intake; however in recent studies, teen populations are less likely to go on a date, drive a car or get a part-time job than past decades. One thing that is agreed is that the children of today face different situations and circumstances then before, therefore they do not fit the historical definition of what a child should be experiencing.
The Job For Us
It starts with us making the first step to build a bridge to our students. As educators, we instigate the learning process and we are the frontline to these students. Use their strengths and support their weaknesses.
That requires taking the first step by continuing to educate yourself. This doesn’t exactly mean going back to college and getting more degrees. It means that the educator never stops being the student. Keep up to date with research, attend conferences, sign up for different professional development opportunities and acquire knowledge about your students. As a music educator, my first connection with my students was learning what kind of music they like. Every day during vocal warmups, I take song requests from my students and every day I learn new songs and music artists from them. Being in a diverse inner city school, I was introduced to artists like Queen Naija, Ella Mai and King Von and I used that knowledge to pick out repertoire that my students will like and help them grow and expand to other genres of music.
As a teacher, we wear many hats and one hat that has been really important for these kids is the therapist/counselor hat. Social emotional learning is a trending concept that helps students with mental health issues. Techniques like meditating, breathing and taking a break might sound contrary to the usual busy rehearsal plan in ensemble classes, but if students are not in the right mindset, they will not work as efficiently. Students go through a lot of traumatic experiences and events so we must meet them in
the middle and compromise. An activity that helps my students destress but still get work done, is learning how to draw musical symbols. It is music-related and a skill that needs to be learned that helps students relax and calm down from everyday life.
Due to the high demand for Texas music educators to get superior scores in the University Interscholastic League, we put tons of expectations on our students and expect them to give 100% every single day. With such a big expectation, students may be anxious,
tired and discouraged. One day when my 7th grade treble class was in this mood, I inquired how they felt and when they all blurted out how tired, stressed and depressed they felt, I said “Do not give me 100% today, I want you to give me 85%.”
I elaborated that we are just going to have a good time today in class. I adapted my word choice and my strategy to how they felt, and they gave more participation and singing than they had in a long time. Giving 85% is sustainable and achievable while still
challenging them to keep going. Most of my students are at risk of not graduating, so 100% for them is a miracle, 85% is a struggle, but something to be attained. UIL scores are important, but not as important as keeping student mental health alive, thriving and instilling a love of choir. There are many ways to meet them where they are while encouraging them to strive for more.
Building bridges for students today can be summarized in three words: Listen, Evaluate, Engage. Listen to students, teachers and mentors and be open to feedback, different perspectives and the stories of these students. Evaluate your philosophy and your teaching style; stagnation on your part will stagnate your students. Lastly, engage and initiate the action of helping out a student. Don’t hesitate to build these bridges. This is the time to dig deep to advocate for your students and make the change for yourself and your music program.
Adrianna Jagodzinski is an emerging music educator in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. She graduated from Texas Christian University with a Bachelor of Vocal Music Education. Currently, Jagodzinski is the head choir director at Haltom Middle School in Haltom City, Texas. She has performed in multiple ensembles — TCU Chorale, TCU Cantiamo, TCU University Singers, UCC Chapel Choir, Arlington Master Chorale and many more — and performed in venues and festivals such as Bass Hall and South West American Choir Directors Association. She has presented at the TCU Research symposium and the Mu Phi Epsilon International Convention about trends in online learning during the pandemic and building bridges to students. Jagodzinski moves forward, striving to continue to learn and research about music education, vocal pedagogy and social emotional learning while continuing her career as a middle school choir director.
WE’RE HEADED TO THE LONE STAR STATE!
The 2023 Mu Phi Epsilon International Convention is only a few months away. After a three-year delay, we are ready to descend on Grapevine, Texas, from July 19-22.
HY’all better make plans now to join us for a top-notch lineup of talent, including Mu Phi members and performers from all over the country.
HThe International Competition will take place at the University of North Texas in Denton, and Mu Phi members are invited to the finals to share in the excitement of finding out who the next winner will be.
HBetter get your boots on!
UR HOME-AWAY-FROM-HOME DURING THE CONVENTION will be at the Embassy Suites by Hilton DFW North in Grapevine, Texas.
Grapevine is a North Texas suburb between Dallas and Fort Worth — the fourth largest metropolitan area in the U.S. There’s easy access to the hotel from the DFW International Airport, located just minutes away. The International Executive Board (IEB) negotiated excellent room rates for Mu Phi Epsilon attendees; keep reading for more information about how to book your room and what you need to know to make the most of your trip.
The Mu Phi Epsilon website — muphiepsilon.org/convention — is the main source for the most up-to-date information about the conference, including the schedule of presenters, activities, and events. Bookmark it on your computer and check it regularly, as information will be updated and more details will be uploaded to the site as we get closer to the main event.
Put these important dates on your calendar now!
• District Director Training:
Wednesday, July 19, 8:30 a.m. to noon.
• International Competition Finals: Wednesday, July 19, 1 to 4 p.m.
• International Convention: July 19 – July 22
• Early Bird Convention Registration Deadline: April 15, 2023
• Convention Registration Deadline: Postmarked by June 1, 2023. No refunds will be given after June 30, and any forms received after June 30 will incur a $50 late fee.
$150 per day
This option is available for those individuals who only wish to participate in the convention for select days (Thursday, Friday and/or Saturday). This registration admits you to all meals and convention events held during the days purchased. Breakfast and the evening reception are complimentary each day to guests staying at the Embassy Suites DFW North.
Full Package Registration
The Early Bird registration fee of $325 is available until April 15, 2023. After April 15, registration fee increases to $425.
The full-package registration fee admits you to three lunches, three dinners, and all convention events. Breakfast and the evening reception are complimentary each day to guests staying at the Embassy Suites DFW North (host hotel).
This option is available for those individuals (and/or their guests) who are only joining us for individual meals and no other events (lunches or dinners; Thursday, Friday and/or Saturday).
Hotel Registration at Embassy Suites By Hilton DFW North
The Embassy Suites DFW North hotel has provided us with a dedicated online hotel reservation webpage.
• Register online for the Embassy Suites DFW North at bit.ly/mpehotel
• Call the Embassy Suites directly at 972-724-2600. Ask for in-house reservations and reference the MPE group block code.
Guests can access the dedicated hotel registration page at bit.ly/mpehotel to learn more about the event and to book, modify or cancel a reservation. Through that page, you will receive our special hotel rate for the entire duration of your stay, valid starting one week before the convention — so you can stay a little longer to explore the greater Dallas and Fort Worth area. Our group rate is $159, plus applicable taxes, per room night for a single or double room. Per hotel policy, no more than four individuals are allowed to share a room. This rate is guaranteed until July 1 only; after that, reservations are made based on space availability, and you may have to pay a higher rate. You may still use the reservation page to book, modify, or cancel your plans. For more information about the hotel and its amenities, visit the website at embassysuitesdfwnorth.com.
Collegiate Business and Collegiate Music (Performer) Delegates, recieve complimentary lodging, covered by the fraternity.
Complete the form at muphiepsilon.org/ registration to make your reservation. You will be assigned to a suite with up to three other delegates.
Please note that Collegiate Business and Music Delegates are not required to take advantage of the complimentary hotel room assignment. If they choose not to, they must make their own room reservations directly with the hotel (at their own expense).
Additional Hotel Information
The Embassy Suites by Hilton DFW North is located just two miles from DFW International Airport. It is easily accessed by car via Highways 635, 114, and 121.
Complimentary transportation to and from DFW International Airport is available to guests 24/7. Note: There are two Embassy Suites by Hilton hotels in close proximity — at both the south and north ends of the airport. If you take the shuttle to the hotel from the terminal, be sure that it is going to Embassy Suites DFW NORTH.
All of the rooms in the Embassy Suites by Hilton DFW North hotel are two-room suites furnished with one or two beds. Room
amenities include mini-refrigerators, microwaves, wet bars, wired and wireless internet access, two televisions with on-demand movies, and video games.
A made-to-order breakfast is free for guests staying at the hotel. The new Hallford’s Restaurant & Bar serves modern American cuisine and is open for lunch and dinner.
The hotel is equipped with a fitness center and a swimming pool. Guests also have full use of the hotel’s 24-hour BusinessLink™ Business Center that offers secretarial services, A/V equipment rental and photocopying services.
For convenient shopping, guests may visit the Bass Pro Shops sporting goods store that is connected to the hotel or venture to Grapevine’s historic downtown district. Complimentary scheduled transportation is also provided to the nearby Grapevine Mills Shopping Mall.
There’s a bit of truth to the claims that Dallas is where the east ends, and Fort Worth is where the west begins. Dallas’ image of opulence and wealth was epitomized in the 1980s prime-time soap opera by the same name. Fort Worth, on the other hand, is often referred to as “Cowtown,” the home of the Fort Worth Stockyards, and even today, its everyday dress code includes a Stetson and cowboy boots. While there’s plenty of cross culture and competition between the two cities, they also complement each other. Those who live in North Texas tend to agree — combined, the two cities possess the best of both worlds. There’s far more to do in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex than can be done in a few days, but here are some of the must-see spots for visitors to explore.
For a taste of cowboy culture, take a trip to the Fort Worth Stockyards. You can see real-live longhorn steer if you time it right during one of the twice-daily cattle drives.
For more ideas and information, go to:
chapter had nine members, but by the end of October they were down to six. The chapter had numerous challenges due to uncertainty during the COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in six Collegiates working to rebuild the chapter. Junior Vice President Nathan Denman shared this account of the chapter’s efforts:
A number of Mu Phi Epsilon collegiate chapters call the Dallas-Fort Worth area home.
Here, we highlight a few.
“Our chapter nearly didn’t survive. After months of trying to get access to the bank account — previous treasurers changed information before the pandemic then didn’t transfer it to new members — we found out we were more $500 in debt to the bank. Through our annual faculty door decorating fundraiser in December 2021, we were able to raise just enough money to get us back in the black.
“After the intense fall semester, we felt the immense need to bring in more members and grow the chapter. We cold DMed people to tell them about Mu Phi, held interest meetings and rush events. Finally, we came up with a rush class of nine. We graduated our previous president, so now we are down to 14 members, but this chapter photo taken in Spring 2022, represents determination, hard work and the Phamily that we now have in the Phi Xi chapter.”
Members of the Atlanta Alumni chapter stand with International Competition winner Hannah Porter-Occeña (Alpha Kappa), third from right, after Porter-Occeña performed a concert of music by women composers at Clayton State University. The concert was sponsored by the Atlanta Alumni and Delta Psi chapters.
A story published in the New York Times in December featured ACME honoree Deon Nielson Price (Gamma, Los Angeles Alumni) as the Tom Brady of composers. At 88, Price is still busy working, writing music for ensembles across the country.
“When I started out, when I was young, I always wanted to have a rich life,”
Price said. “And brother, have I.”
Julie Bees (Phi Pi, Wichita Alumni) performed the three Bs — Bach, Beethoven and Brahms — for the November Wichita Alumni chapter meeting. Bees is a professor of piano at Wichita State University.
Talea Bloch (Beta Pi, Lincoln Alumni) started a new position as assistant professor of musical theatre at Nebraska Wesleyan University in August. “The training I received through the John and Mary Virginia Foncannon Conducting/Coaching Scholarship in 2019 helped me to move from my adjunct roles at multiple universities to this specialized program at a university I adore,” said Bloch. “Many thanks to the MPE Foundation!”
Witherspoon (Phi Iota, Palos Verdes/South Bay Alumni) performed in the Maui Choral Arts Association’s Ring the Bells concert in December in Makawao, Hawaii.
The Colorado College Summer Music Festival honored soprano and philanthropist Peggy Shivers (Alpha Lambda, Colorado Springs Alumni) with an evening of song in June 2022. Shivers moved to Colorado Springs with her husband, Clarence, in 1979. The concert was held in recognition of Shivers’ vast impact on the arts over the decades.
chapter gathered together to celebrate Founders Day in November. The chapter held a concert featuring a number of different members who performed.
International Competition winner Hannah Porter-Occeña (Alpha Kappa) joined the Colorado Springs Alumni chapter for its Founders Day ceremony and celebration in November. Porter-Occeña conducted a master class and performed a concert at Packard Hall at Colorado College.
Palisades Virtuosi celebrated 20 years of commissioning new American music with a concert in November that included composer Adrienne Albert’s (Phi Nu, Los Angeles Alumni) “Swing It Dr. M!” in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall.
The Palos Verdes/South Bay Alumni chapter held a “Welcome Back” general meeting at the home of Emily Anderson (Gamma Sigma, Palos Verdes/South Bay) where the group welcomed five graduated collegiate members from the Gamma Sigma chapter of California State University, Dominguez Hills, into its membership.
Anli Lin Tong (
) appears in a 90-minute documentary highlighting the extraordinary life and legacy of the pianist and teacher Mieczysław Munz (19001976). Tong came to America to study under Munz, becoming his youngest pupil in his final years at the Juilliard School. The film, Munz: A Pianist’s Story, premiered in July.
Psi, December 20, 1943
Died June 23, 2018
Violinist Sybil Hale, known to friends as “Willi” and by her patients/colleagues as Dr. Haire, died on June 23, 2018, at the age of 94. She had several pediatric partnerships and also worked for the Long Beach Unified School District. Willi was active with the Lakewood Chapter Lion’s Club, Bethany Lutheran Church and the LBCC Symphony Orchestra where she played violin.
Phi Iota, September 23, 1979
Died November 7, 2020
Educator, pianist, organist, choir director. Vernice attended Moorhead State Teachers College for two years before teaching in Bertha, Warren and Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. After a year as the band instructor in Rolette, North Dakota, she furthered her education at the University of Minnesota, receiving her degree in music education. Vernice taught music in Ellendale, North Dakota and Wolverton, Minnesota. Vernice was an active community volunteer. She was part of study clubs, Bible study, church women’s groups and was the organist and junior/senior choir director at Trinity Lutheran Church. With her love for piano, Vernice taught private lessons to many students throughout the years.
Trevalan Renee Riggle
Gamma Gamma, November 21, 1988
Died June 29, 2021
Educator. Trevalan earned a Bachelor of Music Education, graduating magna cum laude, and Master of Music
Education from Southwestern Oklahoma State University. Her pedagogical philosophy of music education for children was the Orff Schulwerk approach and she crafted her skill as she pursued and completed three master levels of Orff at the University of St. Thomas and the University of Kentucky. Trevalan taught elementary music in the Yukon Public Schools and then at Westminster School in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. She was a wellrespected educator inspiring students and teachers. Trevalan was a finalist for the Grammy Music Educator Award. One week before her death she had begun working as musical collaborator on a yet to be released Hollywood film using the music of Carl Orff.Susan Marie Foust
Alpha Lambda, March 26, 1996
Died May 21, 2022
Educator. Susan earned her bachelor’s in music education from Marylhurst University in Lake Oswego, Oregon. She was initiated into Mu Phi Epsilon through the Alpha Lambda chapter at Portland State University. After graduation, She joined the Portland Alumni chapter where she held the elected position of steward for several terms. Susan was a diligent treasurer for the Oregon Music Teachers Association, Portland District. She was also instrumental in moving the syllabus program into the 20th and then 21st century by serving as the district’s first paid syllabus support staff and beginning the process of computerizing registration and scheduling of student exams. Susan loved the socialization opportunities of OMTA and Mu Phi Epsilon, attending as many functions — meetings, concerts, lectures, and conferences — as her time and pocketbook would allow. She helped form the West Side Recitals Club in 1998 with colleagues Susan Todd and Doug Simons. Until her retirement she taught piano lessons to many children and adults. Susan loved playing the glockenspiel in the One More Time Around and the Beat Goes On marching bands for many years with her brother, Jim. He has fond memories of the tradition of meeting after the Rose Parade at the Leaky Roof Pub for snacks and visiting. They traveled with the band to many places such as Canada, Florida and Texas.
Epsilon Pi, May 13, 1958
Died June 15, 2022
Choir director, conductor. A legendary choral director, clinician, adjudicator, teacher and pastor, Betty was a woman of boundless energy, eternal optimism, unending enthusiasm and an infectious laugh. She had a 52-year career on the podium — outliving most of her colleagues — and always lived fully in the present, with no anxieties about the future and little sentiment for the past. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech, her master’s degree from the University of Houston and her Doctorate in Musical Arts from the University of Texas. She established the professional Houston Chamber Singers in the late 1970s and discovered when she joined the newly formed Association of Professional Vocal Ensembles (now Chorus America) that she was the only woman to have formed such a group in the United States outside of a university setting. It was in APVE that she met such choral giants as Robert Shaw, Roger Wagner (who gave her a number of his scores) and the legendary Chicago Symphony Chorus founder Margaret Hillis, under whom she studied conducting for a short time. Betty founded the Houston Choral Society in 1987 and served as its artistic director for 28 years before retiring in 2016. She had a lifetime filled with unique opportunities and experiences, such as going through Soviet border guards on her own in 1982 to study for her doctorate thesis at the Musicology Institute in Budapest, Hungary, when it was behind the Iron Curtain. She brought energy and joy to the podium for both singers and audiences alike
during her concert seasons with the Houston Choral Society and on their tours to Europe. She had an uncanny ability to get an ordinary singer to produce extraordinary music, it being said that she could get a beautiful sound from a rusty hinge. When she conducted her final concert with the Houston Choral Society, the Mozart Requiem, in the spring of 2016, people came from out of state to witness it and formed a long line to get a picture with her afterwards. She will be greatly missed by many but leaves a piece of her heart with all of us.Maurice Ethelbert Suhre
Gamma Sigma, November 13, 1992
Palos Verdes/South Bay Alumni
Died July 5, 2022
Pianist. Maurice was born July 5, 1935, in Kansas City, Missouri. David Champion recalls that after a career in aerospace, Maurice enrolled in the music program at California State University, Dominguez Hills to obtain a degree in piano performance. He studied piano with Delores Stevens. He joined the Gamma Sigma chapter of Mu Phi Epsilon and after graduation joined the Palos Verdes/South Bay Alumni chapter where he served on the board of directors as secretary. Maurice was pre-deceased by his wife, Rosemary, who was an artist. Maurice would often introduce his date of birth — July 5, 1935 — with humor, saying he was born on his birthday. Interesting that he died on July 5, too.Marilyn Summers
Epsilon Upsilon, May 9, 1966
Los Angeles Alumni
Died August 16, 2022
Flutist, educator. Marilyn was a dear friend and Mu Phi sister to many of the members of the Los Angeles Alumni chapter and served as secretary of its board for many years. She was always cheery. She played the flute and was a band director in the Los Angeles Unified School District. Marilyn served on the board of the Los Angeles Alumni chapter.
Mu Gamma, December 12, 1972 Lincoln Alumni
Died September 15, 2022
Choir director, educator, composer. Carolee was a member of the Choristers Guild and was director of youth and children’s choir at Country Club Christian Church in Kansas City, Missouri from 1958-1971. She had the privilege of experiencing a festival in Kansas City with Ruth Krebiel Jacobs and was so impressed with what she saw and heard. Her first composition was published with Choristers Guild in 1968. She was professor emeritus of music education and choral activities at the University of NebraskaLincoln School of Music. Carolee often directed choral clinics and festivals both in Nebraska and throughout the United States for elementary, middle school, high school and collegiate choirs, and was a constant advocate for the musical integrity of the treble ensemble. Carolee was honored with the Parents Award to University of Nebraska-Lincoln teachers, and received a Distinguished Teaching Award from the College of Fine and Performing Arts in 2000. She was the founder/artistic director of the Pueri Cantores Organization of Choirs for Young Voices. In 2001, she founded a community women’s choir, Cantabile. Her choirs have performed for many organizations in Nebraska and the surrounding states, and have toured nationally and internationally. Until July of 2002, Carolee was the North Central Division Repertoire and Standards Chair for Children’s Choirs and a member of the National Committee of Repertoire and Standards Chairs of the American Choral Directors Association. She also sang
with the Martin Singers at First-Plymouth Congregational Church. She was involved with Sing Around Nebraska since its conception and conducted the first Sing Around Nebraska Honor Choir. Carolee was recognized by her alma mater, Culver-Stockton College, with an honorary Doctorate of Music. She also received the Cornell Runestad Lifetime Service Award from the Nebraska Choral Directors Association, becoming the first woman to receive that award.
Joyce Ann Geeting
Tau, June 2, 1964
Died October 19, 2022
Cellist, educator. Joyce was an acclaimed cellist and concertized extensively in the United States and Europe. She was a California native and a 1961 graduate of Oakland Technical High School. Joyce went on to earn degrees from the University of Washington (1965), Washington State (1969) and the University of Oregon, where she received a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in 1978. She was a member of Phi Kappa Phi and Mu Phi Epsilon, and she taught at the collegiate level in Montana, Iowa, Wisconsin and California, as well as instructing many private cello students. Joyce founded Chamber Music
Plus in 1982 and was the organization’s director for more than 35 years. In 2003, with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, Joyce performed the world premiere of American composer Carol Worthey’s Elegy for Cello & Orchestra, a work inspired by the events of 9/11 that Joyce had commissioned. In 2008, Joyce authored Janos Starker, “King of Cellists,” The Making of an Artist, a highly regarded biography of the legendary, Grammy-
award-winning musician. She met Starker initially while working on her doctoral dissertation, studied with him extensively, and later interviewed him at length for the book. In 2014, she received the Outstanding Studio Teacher Award from the American String Teachers Association.
Doreen (Ham) Mauk
Mu Eta, May 30, 1950
Died October 20, 2022
Educator, vocalist. Doreen was born in Ceres, California. She attended Cottey College in Nevada, Missouri, Modesto Junior College and the University of the Pacific, majoring in music education. She taught music in her hometown where she met Merlin Mauk. They married in August of 1953 and moved to Washington D.C. where Merlin attended medical school. While there, Doreen taught music in Virginia and Maryland. After Merlin graduated, the couple returned to California in 1957, where their first son, Mitchell, was born days after they arrived. They settled in Sacramento and soon had two more sons, Russell and Glenn. Doreen was an active mother, and also pursued her passion for music education and performance. She sang for 35 years with the Sacramento Choral Society, was President of the Sacramento Symphony League and served on the Symphony Association Board of Directors and the Sacramento Fine Arts Commission. Later, she was a strong supporter of the Sacramento Youth Symphony Orchestra and was instrumental in getting it established as an independent organization. She served for many years in PEO, an international philanthropic organization, and Mu Phi Epsilon.
Mu Chi, May 1, 1976
Died October 26, 2022
Pianist, organist. Priscilla attended McKinney High School near Dallas, Texas, and was allowed to spend afternoons attending piano lessons at Southern Methodist University. She received a full scholarship for her undergraduate studies at SMU where she received a Bachelor of Music in piano performance. She later completed her master’s degree at SMU in piano performance. She enjoyed the Dallas Summer Musicals, Dallas Symphony and classical music on WRR. She was a member of the Richardson Music Teachers and supported music education every way that she could. Priscilla was a gifted musician. She taught piano to hundreds of students, young and old, including private lessons, elementary students in Dallas Independent School District and at Brookhaven Community College. She played piano and organ for multiple churches throughout her career, including her beloved Community Christian Church in Richardson and her family church First Christian Church, McKinney, where she met her husband, Scott. She accompanied many young musicians for their University Interscholastic League solo and ensemble competitions as well as professional vocalists. She loved Bach and Beethoven. She memorized all the preludes and fugues of Book I of Bach’s Well-Tempered Klavier and 30 of Beethoven’s 32 piano sonatas. She had perfect pitch. She led a life of faith and service to others, always with a smile on her face. She will be dearly missed by all who loved her.Doris Lou Braun
Alpha Kappa, April 24, 1975
Kansas City Alumni
Died December 10, 2022
Educator, director, pianist, vocalist. While in her 40s, Doris chose to return to school and became a student at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, Conservatory of Music. While there, she joined Mu Phi Epsilon and was an active member of the Alpha Kappa chapter and after graduation was active in the Kansas City Alumni chapter. She earned a degree in music education and taught in both the Grandview and Hickman Mills School Districts. She also taught many piano and vocal students in her home and was an active member and director of her church choir for many years. Julia Scherer remembers Doris as one of the most enthusiastic and faithful members of Mu Phi Epsilon that she has ever known. Doris served as president of the Kansas City Alumni Evening chapter from 1990-1993 and held numerous other board and committee positions over the years, including serving on the scholarship committee, which holds annual auditions and awards substantial scholarships to collegiate Mu Phi members. Doris was an ardent supporter of the Alpha Kappa chapter at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and showed her commitment by her presence at their concerts, recruiting events and social gatherings. In later years, she took up jewelry-making and took her creations to conventions to help raise money for Mu Phi — purple, of course! She took great joy in attending Mu Phi conventions and being with her colleagues of all ages. The absence of her smiling face and hearty laugh will be painfully felt
at this summer’s convention. Doris served on the IEB as 1st vice president-extension officer from 2008 to 2011. She also served as a proofreader for The Triangle for many years.
Beth Ann Thomas
Kappa, November 23, 1974
Died December 22, 2022
Piano, marimba. Beth Ann and her sister, Nadine, entertained thousands during their storied musical careers. Beth Ann was selected as one of two high school students from Indiana to march in the first McDonald’s All-American Band in 1972 at The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. She and her sister played twin marimbas at Cedar Point amusement park in the IMAX theater for four summers during the late 1970s. They were highlighted entertainment on Carnival Cruise lines and taught piano together at Baldwin Music Store and Shining Light Studios. Beth Ann was a professional judge for local pageants and music contests. Through their passion for music, Beth Ann and Nadine’s students thrived. Their students frequently received perfect or first place scores at state level contests. Additionally, Beth Ann played with The Warner Bros. Orchestra and traveled abroad with the Greater Greenwood Community Band. Most recently, she taught at the Mooresville Arts Partnership. Beth Ann completed her Bachelor of Art degree at Butler University in 2005. She enjoyed teaching grade school music in several school systems before retiring to teach privately. Her passion for the arts extended to her love of handmade greeting cards and thoughtful gifts for family and friends.
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