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Student Success Stories

Your time in the Department of Music can lead to an exceptional future. Here are a few success stories to come out of our program:

Stephen Ahearn ('00) double majored in Biology and Music at UR before completing graduate study in clarinet performance at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He is currently a member of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. 

Matthew Worth ('00) is a lyric baritone who majored in Music at UR and continued his education at the Manhattan School of Music and Julliard Opera Center. He currently enjoys an international career performing in operas and recitals. Recent performances with the Opera Parallele, Boston Lyric Opera, Oregon Bach Festival, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and Central City Opera. 

Matthew McCabe ('01) is a composer who majored in music at UR before completing graduate study in composition at Bowling Green State University and the University of Florida. He is coordinator of the music technology area at the Schwob School of Music at Columbus State University in Georgia. 

Lauren Bailey ('02) studied Music and Arts Management at UR. She then moved to New York City to work as the marketing director for The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and at Columbia University's Miller Theatre. 

Jake Monaco ('04) is a film composer who majored in Music at UR. He then completed his graduate studies in film scoring at the University of Southern California. He has worked on many notable film scores, including Dumplin', Keeping Up with the Joneses, Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie, and Let's Be Cops. 

Emily Riggs ('04) is a soprano who majored in Music at UR before completing a DMA in voice performance at the University of Maryland. She is currently Assistant Professor of Voice at Eastern Connecticut State University. 

Stefan Czestochowski ('05) double majored in Music and Philosophy at UR before traveling to DePaul University for a Master's degree in jazz performance. During graduate school, he toured and played music in Chicago, New York, Australia, Cuba, and Japan. He has recorded a number of albums ranging from jazz rock to funk. During graduate school, he developed a passion for medicine and is now pursuing the M.D. degree at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. 

Megan Smith Durhamdegree in Voice Performance and Pedagogy at Westminster Choir College and currently teaches voice in the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania. She is an innovator in integrating Yoga practice into voice pedagogy. 

Andy Nagraj ('06) is a baritone who majored in Music at UR. He now lives in Chicago and is a professional actor and singer. 

Heather Shields ('07) majored in Music at UR and then studied Arts Administration at Columbia University. She currently produces shows on Broadway and is the Managing Director of City Salt Theatricals. Her shows include A Christmas Carol and Bandstand Broadway. 

Christopher Chandler ('08) is a composer of acoustic and electroacoustic music. He majored in Music at UR before completing graduate work in composition at Bowling Green State University and the Eastman School of Music. He is currently Assistant Professor of Music at Union College. 

Heather Stebbins ('09) is a composer who majored in Music at UR. She went on to win a prestigious Fulbright Fellowship and also completed a graduate degree in composition at Boston University. She is currently Assistant Professor of Music at George Washington University. 

Parker Hawkins ('12) is a bassist who majored in International Studies, with a focus on Latin America. He also minored in Music. He is currently a professional musician living in Nashville where he plays electric and upright bass and sings in a wide variety of bands, ranging from country and Americana to jazz and R&B. He tours all over the US and has recorded seven albums with various artists. 

Tyler Tillage ('13) is a pianist who studied jazz performance and majored in Music at UR. He is currently a mobile iOS developer and remains active as a jazz pianist. 

Austin Nuckols ('14) is a pianist and Broadway composer. He majored in Music at UR and then undertook graduate study in Musical Theatre Writing at NYU's Tisch School. He currently works in musical theatre in New York City and has written more than eight full-length theatrical works. 

Dane Harrison ('14) majored in music and studied piano at UR. He is currently working towards a Ph.D. in musicology at Case Western Reserve University. 

Jenni Swegan ('15) is a soprano who double majored in Music and English. She later went on to pursue graduate work in English at New York University. 

Nick Yeutter ('15) is a pianist and composer who double majored in Chemistry and Music at UR. He then completed graduate work in Composition and Screen Scoring at NYU's Steinhardt School. He currently works as a composer of symphonic and electronic music for film and television. 

Mike Haliczer ('16) is a trumpeter who majored in Business and minored in Music. While at UR, he traveled to Cuba with the University’s jazz combo and explored the use of live instruments in pop and electronic dance music. After graduation, Mike performed in shows with MAX, Whethan, Gnash, Win & Woo, Brasstracks, Party Pupils, Throttle, and SNBRN. He now lives LA where he splits his time between electronic music production and running the sales program for an educational technology company. 

Britta Lotus ('17) is a mezzo-soprano who majored in Music and now works in LA as a singer-songwriter. She just released her first song, which is available on Spotify. 

Jacob Litt ('18) majored in Music at UR. He is at the University of Bridgeport completing an M.S. in Secondary Education with a Music Certification. He currently teaches music to students with special needs. 

Jacqueline Schimpf ('18) is a soprano who majored in Music at UR. She is currently enrolled in the Master's program in Voice Performance and Pedagogy at the Cleveland Institute of Music. 

Duncan Trawick ('18) is a baritone who majored in Music at UR. He is currently enrolled in the Master's program in Opera performance at Wichita State University. 

Bianca Wieck ('20) is a pianist and music major with an interest in the music industry. She is engaged in an internship at Spacebomb Studios in downtown Richmond where she is learning about all facets of the music production business. 

Jake Cardwell ('21) is a jazz pianist and guitarist majoring in music. His interest in music production led him to register for an internship at Spacebomb Studios in downtown Richmond where he has been exposed to all facets of music production. 

Adam (Bowen) Duan (‘22) is a current UR student. He has been recording Chinese rap vocals in UR's studio and learning about mixing and sampling hip hop tracks. He doesn't have conventional music training but has found a pathway in the Department of Music for his interests. 

We are proud of our alumni and want to hear from them, so if you are a former UR music student and would like to update or add more to our page, please send an email to the Department of Music.