Stay Connected: CCMONSTAGE Online’s Latest Newsletter

Experience the artistry and expertise of our students, alumni, faculty and staff through our CCMONSTAGE Online e-newsletter. Our latest edition features performance videos, stories and other resources designed to help us stay connected.

UC plans to welcome back students to campus on Aug. 24 for the start of the fall semester. A thoughtful blend of in-person and virtual offerings, in addition to enhanced health and safety measures, will provide students with the best collegiate experience possible in this new era of living and learning. Learn more about UC’s Return to Campus.

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CCM Dance co-ops create pipeline from student to professional artist

The college’s co-op program connects students to professional ballet companies while they complete their BFA degrees, creating a pipeline that leads young artists to their future careers. Student Grace Mccutcheon and alumna Hannah Holtsclaw share how CCM Dance co-ops have impacted their careers so far. Read more.

WVXU and CCM Acting’s “O’Toole From Moscow” is available to stream on demand

Listen online to enjoy Rod Serling’s comedy about confusion between Russians and the Cincinnati Reds. Directed by CCM Professor Richard Hess, the radio play features a cast of CCM Acting students with narration by Serling’s daughter, Anne. Read more.

Internationally acclaimed stage director Greg Eldridge joins CCM’s opera faculty

Eldridge has worked across eight countries at some of the world’s most famous opera houses. His work has been praised by critics for its “thoughtful and effective” staging, with “detailed characterizations and considered through-lines” a hallmark of his directing style. Read more.

Eight UC faculty recognized for excellence in mentoring undergraduate researchers

CCM Assistant Professor-Educator of Piano Andy Villemez was named one of this year’s outstanding research mentors. UC offers numerous opportunities for undergraduate students to participate in research and explore it as a possible career. Read more.

Arts for all: CCM offers mix of online, in-person electives in fall 2020

CCM offers dozens of different general studies and arts elective courses in fall 2020. These credit-granting courses are open to all UC students and cover a wide range of topics including dance, movies and media, music and theatre arts. Read more.

CCM Organ Professor spotlights C.B. Fisk Opus 148 Organ on “Around Cincinnati”

Cincinnati’s Christ Church Cathedral dedicated a new C.B. Fisk Organ Opus 148 in 2018. To learn more about this special instrument, WVXU’s Alexander Watson recently spoke with CCM Professor of Organ and Harpsichord Michael Unger and David Pike, head tonalist from C. B. Fisk Organ Builders. Read more.

CCM Sounds Design student wins Pat MacKay Diversity in Design Scholarship

BFA Sound Design student Alena Milos is a recipient of the 2020 Pat MacKay Diversity in Design Scholarship, presented by Questex’s Live Design International (LDI) in partnership with TSDCA and USITT. Live Design, a creative and technical resource for live design professionals, recently featured Milos in a Q&A published online. Read more.

FAQs and Online Resources

Please refer to our coronavirus resource website to help answer your frequently asked questions. This website is updated as new information develops, so please check back often. See more UC answers to your important questions.

For more information about the University of Cincinnati’s response to COVID-19, please visit

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The four members of the Ariel Quartet, string quartet-in-residence at CCM, pose on a couch with their musical instruments. Photo by Marco Borggreve.

Stream the Ariel Quartet’s Final CCM Concert of 2019

Although the theaters and concert halls at the University of Cincinnati’s nationally ranked and internationally renowned College-Conservatory of Music are temporarily silent, audiences can still experience world-class performances through CCM’s new CCMONSTAGE Online video series. This week’s release showcases the Ariel Quartet’s concert of fugues from Oct. 22, 2019.

The performance features W.A. Mozart’s Adagio and Fugue in C minor, K. 546; Bartok’s String Quartet No. 1, Op.7; and Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 13 in B-flat Major, Op. 130 and 133.

The concert from Oct. 22, 2019, features Beethoven’s Große Fuge (or “Great Fugue”), which the Ariel Quartet performed in its debut Beethoven cycle at CCM in the 2013-14 performance season. Arts reporter Janelle Gelfand praised the ensemble’s performance: “From start to finish, the musicians wonderfully captured Beethoven’s emotional grit and fire, coupled with some of the most sublime music ever written.”

Described by the American Record Guide as “a consummate ensemble gifted with utter musicality and remarkable interpretive power,” the Ariel Quartet has earned a glowing international reputation. The ensemble is comprised of Alexandra “Sasha” Kazovsky, violin; Amit Even-Tov, cello; Gershon Gerchikov, violin; and Jan Grüning, viola. The group was formed in Israel in 1998 and has served as CCM’s string quartet-in-residence since 2012.

The Ariel Quartet’s 2019-20 CCM concert series was made possible by the generous contributions of an anonymous donor, The Estate of Mr. William A. Friedlander, Mrs. William A. Friedlander, Dr. Randolph L. Wadsworth, Mr. & Mrs. J. David Rosenberg, Mr. & Mrs. Harry H. Santen, Elizabeth C. B. & Paul G. Sittenfeld, Mr. & Mrs. Thomas E. Stegman, Dr. & Mrs. Theodore W. Striker and Mrs. Harry M. Hoffheimer.

Receive updates on future CCMONSTAGE Online performances by subscribing to our mailing list.


Featured image at top: Ariel Quartet members Jan Grüning, Amit Even-Tov, Gershon Gerchikov and Alexandra “Sasha” Kazovsky. Photo/Marco Borggreve

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CCM presents THEY WERE YOU. Photo by Adam Zeek.

World Premiere of CCM’s “They Were You” Gets Rave Reviews

CCM presents THEY WERE YOU. Photos by Adam Zeek.

CCM presents THEY WERE YOU. Photo by Adam Zeek.

Critics praised CCM’s world premiere of They Were You, a musical revue of Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt songs, which ran Oct. 5-9 in the Cohen Family Studio Theater. Devised and directed by Aubrey Berg, the Patricia A. Corbett Distinguished Chair of Musical Theatre at CCM, They Were You featured musical arrangements by CCM faculty member Stephen Goers and choreography by alumna Katie Johannigman (BFA Musical Theatre, 2012).

In his review for The Sappy Critic, Kirk Sheppard called CCM’s They Were You “a magical night of theater.” He praised Berg’s direction, the “excellent” cast, Johannigman’s “fun, logical” choreography and Goers’ “beyond beautiful” musical arrangements. 

“There’s no need to single out any one of the six outrageously gifted young artists in the cast,” said Rafael de Acha in his review of the production on Rafael’s Music Notes. “Let me merely give you their names and entreat you to make mental note of them, with the assurance that, sooner than you think, you will be hearing these names: Gabe Wrobel, Emily Fink, Stavros Koumbaros, Aria Brasswell, Karl Amundsen and Michelle Coben.”

CCM presents THEY WERE YOU. Photo by Adam Zeek.

CCM presents THEY WERE YOU. Photo by Adam Zeek.

Teddy Gumbleton of the League of Cincinnati Theatres wrote that each of the six student performers sang “like a dream, navigating the lush harmonies and infusing each song with the necessary depth and wit. Together they work flawlessly as an ensemble, infusing the rich music with tremendous character.”

In a review for Talkin’ Broadway, Scott Cain said CCM’s Jones and Schmidt revue “revealed a thoughtful, varied and pleasant journey through pair’s exemplary work, and showcased some fine performances and design.” Cain praised the production’s “beautiful, night-sky mural” backdrop designed by CCM faculty member Thomas Umfrid. He also proposed that They Were You “will hopefully be licensed and made available for other theater companies to perform.”

CCM’s 2016-17 season continues with a production of Broadway hit, A Chorus Line, Oct. 20-30 in Patricia Corbett Theater. Tickets are on sale now.

They Were You photos by Adam Zeek,

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Patricia Corbett Theater

CCM Presents Broadway Hit ‘A Chorus Line’ Oct. 20-30

"A Chorus Line" preview photography by Mark Lyons.

“A Chorus Line” preview photography by Mark Lyons.

The University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music’s Mainstage Series continues with nine-time Tony award-winning musical, A Chorus Line. Directed and choreographed by Diane Lala with musical direction from Roger Grodsky, A Chorus Line runs Oct. 2030 in CCM’s Patricia Corbett Theater.

Centered around Broadway dancers as they audition for roles in the next smash hit, A Chorus Line offers a candid look at the backstage world of musical theatre.  Director and choreographer Diane Lala and musical director Roger Grodsky stay true to the show’s origins by setting it in the 1970s, when A Chorus Line was written.

“This show is very special to performers, theatre dancers especially,” says Lala, CCM professor of Musical Theatre. “Everyone wants to know what it feels like to get to that moment in the finale that everyone has been waiting for and sing ‘One’ as the lights pulse and the audience goes crazy. There is nothing better.”

The original director and choreographer of A Chorus Line, Michael Bennett, wanted to create a show about so-called Broadway “gypsies” who constantly move from show to show to audition for new productions. Bennett brought some of these migrant performers together to discuss their experiences, both in and out of show business, and recorded the sessions. This dialogue became A Chorus Line, with part of the script pulled directly from the recordings. Some of the interviewed performers joined the musical’s original cast to play themselves on Broadway.

“By the end of the show, the audience feels as though they have really gotten to know the dancers and roots for them to succeed,” says Grodsky, CCM professor of Musical Theatre. “The illusion that the audience was watching an actual audition taking place was reinforced in the original production by the orchestra being invisible. This was one of the first shows that completely covered the orchestra pit.”

A Chorus Line focuses on the experiences and perspectives of musical theatre performers, but Lala says the show has universal appeal for non-performers as well.

“It is really a universal quest, right?” she suggests. “People in ‘regular’ jobs also are just looking for work, and some are hoping for that next promotion or to be stars in their own profession. This show puts that desire, struggle, hope, success and disappointment out there for the audience to see. I think that is why this is such a powerful show. People feel and can instantly associate with the characters onstage.

“If you are someone with a love for it,” she continues, “everything you go through is worth it to get to stand up there and do what you have trained your whole life for.”

James Kirkwood, Jr. and Nicholas Dante wrote the book for A Chorus Line. The music is by Marvin Hamlisch, with lyrics by Edward Kleban. The show opens on Thursday, Oct. 20 and runs through Sunday, Oct. 30 at the College-Conservatory of Music’s Patricia Corbett Theater. Tickets are on sale now.

*There is a University of Cincinnati Homecoming Kickoff Party on Sigma Sigma Commons from 6-9 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 21. There are also UC Homecoming events that begin at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22. The UC Homecoming Football game will be held at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22 at Nippert Stadium. Please be aware there may be heavier-than-normal traffic in and around campus.

Performance Times
•    8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 20
•    8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21
•    2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22
•    2 and 7 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 23
•    8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 26
•    8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 27
•    8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28
•    2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29
•    2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 30

Patricia Corbett Theater, CCM Village
University of Cincinnati

Purchasing Tickets
Tickets to A Chorus Line are $31-35 for general admission, $22-25 for non-UC students and $18-21 for UC students with a valid ID. Customizable subscription packages are also available.

Tickets can be purchased in person at the CCM Box Office, over the telephone at 513-556-4183 or online at

Parking and Directions

Parking is available in the CCM Garage (located at the base of Corry Boulevard off Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus. Please visit for more information on parking rates.

For detailed maps and directions, please visit Additional parking is available off-campus at the U Square complex on Calhoun Street and other neighboring lots.

For directions to CCM Village, visit
CCM Season Presenting Sponsor and Musical Theatre Program Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Mainstage Season Production Sponsor: Macy’s
Story by CCM graduate student Alexandra Doyle

CCM News
CCM Presents 'Romeo and Juliet.' Photo by Mark Lyons.

CCM Slideshows: William Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’

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CCM’s Mainstage Season of passion, courage and romance opens this week with William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Directed by Assistant Professor of Acting Brant Russell, this retelling of the Bard’s star-crossed love story is a comedy… until it’s not. The production runs in CCM’s Patricia Corbett Theater Thursday through Sunday.

Performance Times
• 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 29
• 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30
• 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1
• 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2

Patricia Corbett Theater, CCM Village
University of Cincinnati

Purchasing Tickets
Tickets to Romeo and Juliet are $27-31 for adults, $17-20 for non-UC students and $15-18 for UC students with a valid ID. Tickets to the Sept. 28 preview performance are just $15.

Student rush tickets will be sold one hour before each performance to non-UC students for $12 or $15, based on availability. UC students can receive one free student rush ticket with a valid ID, based on availability.

Customizable subscription packages are also available for CCM’s 2016-17 Mainstage Series.

Tickets can be purchased in person at the CCM Box Office, over the telephone at 513-556-4183 or online at

Parking and Directions

Parking is available in the CCM Garage (located at the base of Corry Boulevard off Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus. Please visit for more information on parking rates.

For detailed maps and directions, please visit Additional parking is available off-campus at the U Square complex on Calhoun Street and other neighboring lots.

For directions to CCM Village, visit

CCM Season Presenting Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Mainstage Season Production Sponsor: Macy’s

CCM News CCM Slideshows
The Cohen Family Studio Theater at CCM.

Student Compositions Showcased in CCM’s “A View from the Edge” Recital

The University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory of Music offers a few recitals each semester called “A View from the Edge.” These free concerts showcase original works of student composers and give audiences a look over the precipice of current compositional techniques.

The first of this season’s student composition recitals is at 8 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 26 in CCM’s Cohen Family Studio Theater. The concert program includes a set of three songs for soprano and piano inspired by the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead, a freshman composer’s first piano sonata and How I Lost My Voice, a piece for flute and guitar that a student wrote in response to the Nov. 13, 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris.

Daniel Harrison

Daniel Harrison.

Daniel Harrison, a third-year doctoral candidate studying music composition, is one of the student coordinators for this installment of “A View from the Edge.” CCM graduate student Alexandra Doyle got in touch with Harrison to get a preview of the upcoming recital.

Can you tell me a bit about “A View from the Edge” and the goals of these recitals?
The “View From The Edge” series was created as a way to showcase the newest compositions from the students in the CCM composition studio. At these concerts, you will hear premieres of chamber music, which range from solos to small ensembles and occasionally works that incorporate electronics. One of the outstanding characteristics of our composition studio is how diverse all of our compositional voices are; everyone has something different to say and their own way of saying it.

What’s it like to work with student performers to hone your pieces? Have you found that you make a significant amount of changes after rehearsals have begun?
Working with other students is great! I love it when there is a sense that we, as a team, are collaborating together to create an experience for a concert-goer. As a composer, I view my role in this as only a third of the equation; the audience and performer make up the other two thirds. I have gotten advice from performers that has led to some significant revisions, both in terms of idiomatic treatment of the instruments and notional choices.

Which three pieces on the program stand out to you, and why?
One of the three pieces on the concert that I’m really looking forward to hearing is Phillip Robert‘s Her em Iteru, which is a set of three songs for soprano and piano based on texts found in the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead. Another is our incoming freshman composer Maksym Mahlay‘s first piano sonata, which looks like a fiery and virtuosic piece for solo piano. It’s also worth noting that the composer himself will be performing the piece. Lastly, my piece for flute and guitar, How I Lost My Voice, will be premiered at the recital. This piece attempts to capture the feeling of not being able to express oneself vocally and contains extended techniques in the flute and guitar that give the illusion of a voice becoming hoarse and transparent.

Did a personal experience inspire your work, How I Lost My Voice?
While I was composing this piece, the Nov. 13, 2015 Paris attacks occurred. After the initial shock, I vividly recall feeling this wave of absolute hopelessness. What could I do? As someone whose profession is to write music, in a country thousands of miles away and separated from France by an ocean, ‘not much’ is as a gross understatement. This event radically refocused my perspective and reframed the project I was working on for a reading session, which was a simple, short piece for flute and guitar.

I began asking what purpose music served in response to tragedy. I imagined that even if I screamed until I lost my voice, there was nothing that I could do to undo what happened. My only recourse was to respond through music well after the fact.

What should people who haven’t experienced much new music expect if they come to “A View from the Edge”?
I would come in to these concerts with an open mind. Our composition studio is filled with students who have different aesthetics. No two recitals will offer the same sounds. One bit of advice that I would offer to someone who is looking to experience a new music concert for the first time is to listen to the music in the same way one would taste a new dish­ – just be open to the experience!

The first “A View from the Edge” recital is at 8 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 26 in CCM’s Cohen Family Studio Theater. Composition students will have another opportunity to showcase their new works in the second concert at 8 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 31 in Patricia Corbett Theater.


Story by CCM graduate student Alexandra Doyle

CCM News Student Salutes