Senior recitals share ‘loving’ atmosphere

Stephanie Harter Gilmore, senior music major, and Nick Gilmore, senior music major, perform in her senior recital.

Stephanie Harter Gilmore, senior music major, and Nick Gilmore, senior music major, perform in her senior recital.

Alexandra Nicolas

After years of training, vocal music majors have one night to shine in their art.

With graduation looming senior vocal majors get the opportunity to perform a variety of works in a senior recital.

“It’s kind of like their capstone as a voice major,” said Dr. Susan Smith, associate professor of music.

Students enroll in the zero credit hour class, Senior Recital, for transcript purposes and give a recital of music selected with the help of their instructor.

“[Smith] has so much experience with programming recitals, all I had to do was trust her expertise,” said Stephanie Harter Gilmore, senior vocal music major.

The pieces performed are in English, Italian, French and German and cater to the particular style interest of the students.

“We have a very classical approach training voice,” Smith said. “We choose classical literature from all four romance languages.”

While some students concentrate on genres like opera, others only performed musical theatre, like senior theatre major Ben Horine.

“In all institutions, doing a senior recital is a required element of vocal major and Ben was here because he wanted to be,” Smith said.

Senior music education majors like Laura Hasselquist also gave a final recital.

In addition to gaining the experience of a live solo performance, students also received the support from their most loyal fans.

“The best part of a senior recital is the lack of nervousness, because the entire audience is made up of all the people who love and support you,” Gilmore said. “It’s a wonderful feeling to look into the audience, and know that every face you see is rooting for you.

“Everyone wants to be loved and accepted, and to know that you are by a standing ovation, it feels amazing.”

Along with family, performers also had the support of friends who want to see them succeed.

“Steph is our choreographer, and it was so cute to see her and Nick perform together,” said Laura Dimmit, Joplin High School junior.

Select junior students also performed a joint recital to more experience before their own senior performance next year.

With recitals finished, some students have the work world ahead while others have graduate school.

“I am very excited to graduate,” said Shannon Martinous, senior vocal music major, “I plan on getting my master’s degree at Boston Conservatory.”

Gilmore also plans on pursuing her master’s of music in opera performance at Wichita State University.

“I also received a graduate assistantship in Opera,” she said. “I’m very excited.”