Alumnus recruits MLB stars and musicians for virtual rendition of ‘Take Me Out to the Ballgame’

Warm up for the start of the Major League Baseball season with a special virtual performance of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” that showcases UC College-Conservatory of Music students and alumni with MLB players. The performance is available to watch online.

Alumnus Harrison Sheckler (BM Piano, ’19) brought 200 people together for the performance, which was professionally produced with help from former Cincinnati Reds pitcher Bronson Arroyo. The performance features singers and musicians from CCM and the Brooklyn College. Filling out the roster for the project are Bret Saberhagen (pitcher in the Royals Hall of Fame and 1985 World Series champion and former Met); Jim Day (FOX Red’s baseball announcer); Susan Roush Dellinger (author of “Red Legs and Black Sox” and granddaughter of Baseball Hall of Famer Edd Roush); Nick Martinez (pitcher for the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters of Nippon Professional Baseball and former Ranger’s pitcher); Aristides Aquino (Red’s outfielder); Dale Scott (Former MLB umpire) and many others.

The video features 22 CCM students and alumni representing multiple areas of the college including violin, cello, clarinet, double bass, oboe, flute, piano, harp, horn and more. It also includes CCM Professor of Music (Tuba and Euphonium) Tim Northcut. It was produced by CCM Commercial Music Production alumni Armin Meyer and Grant Bayer, who are audio engineers at Cincinnati’s Zated Records. Many of these students and alumni also participated in Sheckler’s virtual performance of “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” CCM students and alumni involved in the “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” performance include:

  • Armin Meyer (BM Commercial Music Production, ’18)
  • Grant Bayer (BM Commercial Music Production, ’18)
  • Natalie Orth (BM Violin, ’20)
  • Jonathan Lin (BM Violoncello, ’18)
  • Carolyn Regula – former DMA Violoncello student
  • Peter Ryan (MM Violoncello, ’19) – current DMA Violoncello current
  • Sarah Minnemanm – current DMA Oboe student
  • Patrick Grimone (BM Oboe, ’19)
  • Taylor Overholt (BM Clarinet, ’19)
  • Collin Goff – current BM Music Education and Clarinet
  • David Goist (BM Violin, ’16; MM Violin, ’18)
  • Kanako Shimasaki – current DMA Violin student
  • Taylor Fleshman (BM Harp, ’18)
  • Evan Sacks-Wilner – current BM Tuba student
  • Li-han Eliza Tseng (DMA Violoncello, ’19)
  • Katie Riley – current BM Flute student
  • Ryan Penshorn – former BM Horn student
  • Eliza Edge (BM Horn, ’19)
  • Phillip Palmore (BM Horn, ’20)
  • Taiga Benito – current BM Double Bass student
  • Harrison Sheckler (BM Piano, ’19)
  • Tim Garner (BM Commercial Music Production, ’19)

The performance has earned media attention from the Cincinnati EnquirerWGN-TVBackstage and Spectrum News.

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Alumni Spotlight: Brian Katona, MM Choral Conducting 2002

Story by CCM Associate Director of Alumni Relations Jamie Muenzer. Originally published online at alumni.uc.edu/ccm/katona.

Choose a college. Get through courses, tests and performances. Graduate and never look back. Right?

Well, we hope not.

And we are especially fortunate that Brian Katona (MM Choral Conducting, 2002) keeps choosing to look back. “I worked with conducting alumni while I was in school, had access to all kinds of professors, and wasn’t restricted to only doing one thing,” Brian says. “The College-Conservatory of Music was an incredible resource to both learn and play.” And as an Emmy Award-winning documentary film score composer, Brian felt it was important to eventually come “home” and pay it forward.

Similar to many students going into the creative or performing arts, Brian started his Master’s at CCM somewhat unsure of his ultimate path. Documentary filmmaking wasn’t even on his radar. But as a true testament to the well-rounded nature of CCM’s programs, there was an incredible amount of crossover with many other departments — Musical Theatre, Dance, Acting, Opera — and he found himself conducting many of the shows in Corbett Auditorium while expanding his own personal preference and repertoire.

And thanks to a master class he attended, Brian caught the bug for documentary film scoring. Soon after the workshop, he traveled to the renowned Aspen Music Festival for The Susan and Ford Schumann Composition Film Score program, and the field has been his driving passion ever since. Thinking back on this time, he says the faculty at CCM were especially encouraging, helping to develop both his composing and conducting craft.

CCM to Film: Coming Full Circle
Having worked on award-winning films ranging from The Town that Disappeared Overnight to The Builder, Brian says film scoring is about creating a connection with the imagery through sound. “As a film composer, you’re trying to capture moments through music, sometimes in scenes with very little dialogue. It’s a challenge, but you become so drawn to the story.”

Spending most of his time composing in his home studio in Newtown, Pennsylvania, Brian works with footage provided by the production companies and uses both computer-based and live instruments to create the musical score. He says each project is a brand new adventure and challenge. When he approached CCM to teach a master class, he hoped to share some of the same trials and joys of film scoring that he’s encountered. “And selfishly, it’s so nice to connect with younger composers,” he adds. “By sharing their thoughts and fresh creative ideas they often teach me as much as I teach them.

After connecting with Professor of Commercial Music Production professor Tom Haines and learning of his advanced Film Scoring class, Brian saw the perfect match. And for seniors pursuing their Bachelor of Music in Commercial Music Production, it was the perfect opportunity. Students would work with Brian over the course of a three-session Skype master class to develop their own scores for a documentary film. The catch: It was a film Brian had already worked on, stripped of the music.

“It was up to the students to create their own interpretation of the mood the film should take on,” Brian says. “By the third session, they were presenting to me and I was providing feedback on some really amazing scores. The students demonstrated a wide variety of musical styles ranging from the traditional classical approach to scores that had elements of jazz and pop. Regardless of style, each score fit very well and gave a unique and powerful emotional subtext to the film.” The workshop has gone so well that Brian says there might be one more session in the works.

If Brian’s career path is any indication, all it takes is one workshop or master class to alter the trajectory for the rest of your life. His hope for students? Find that spark.


Brian Katona is an Emmy® Award-winning composer, orchestrator, arranger, and conductor. Recent film/television credits: The Builder (Emmy Winner for best musical composition), A Hope For Hartly (Best Melodic Theme, Garden State Film Festival), PEI Kids: Generation Change (Film: Broader Vision Award, Garden State Film Festival), The Town That Disappeared Overnight (Film: Two time Emmy Winner, Garden State Film Festival Winner), Biserici De Lemn Din Romania (SEEFest Official Selection), I Throw Rocks (Film: Maumee Film Festival Winner), My Spirited Sister (Sitcom). Theater credits: Jesse James: Dead or Alive. Commercial recordings: The Voice of Christmas: “The Night Before Christmas,” A Christmas Journey: “I Wonder What I’ll Get for Christmas.” Published concert music (Imagine Music): Anthem for the Patriots, Space Battle, Space Fantasy, When I Hear Music, An Irish Blessing.

Soundcloud: @emlaproductions
Homepage: www.facebook.com/emlaproductions/

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CCM faculty artists Craig Bailey, James Bunte and Scott Belck. Photography by Andrew Higley.

CCM Presents Free Performances by World-Class Musicians with Fall 2016 Faculty Artist Series

The esteemed faculty artists at UC’s College-Conservatory of Music take center stage during 12 diverse performances this fall! Running from August 29 through November 1, these programs highlight music from multiple genres, from classical styles to contemporary commercial music and beyond.

Each concert in CCM’s Faculty Artist Series series is free and open to the general public, offering audiences the chance to hear recitals by world-class artists in CCM’s stunning performance halls.

Please refer to the listings below for a complete schedule and additional performance information.

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CCM’S FALL 2016 FACULTY ARTIST SERIES

8 p.m. Monday, Aug. 29
TIMMER AND FRIENDS
Timothy Northcut, tuba
Location: Cohen Family Studio Theater
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8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 7
Alan Siebert, trumpet
Sandra Rivers, piano
A night of trumpet and piano, with selections by Joseph Turrin, George Gershwin, Robert Schumann, J.G.B. Neruda, Brendan Collins and others.
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
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4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 11
Marie-France Lefebvre, piano
Featuring Mark Gibson, piano; Donna Loewy, piano; and Nathaniel Chaitkin, cello
This program will include Rachmaninoff’s Cello Sonata, Op. 19, and Corigliano’s Gazebo Dances, along with works by Mozart and Schubert.
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
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The previously announced Sept. 19 performance by Daniel Weeks and Donna Loewy has been rescheduled for 4 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 22, 2017. The performance will remain in the Robert J. Werner Recital Hall.

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8 p.m. Monday, Sept. 19
Allen Otte, Percussion
Featuring music written for Allen Otte by Rzewski, Schuette and Applebaum as well as original compositions by Otte himself!
Location: Cohen Family Studio Theater
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8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 20
Mary Stucky, mezzo-soprano
Rodney Stucky, guitar and lute
Performing songs from the rich repertory of French, German, Spanish and English music for voice, guitar and lute.
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
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8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 20
Russell Burge, vibraphone
Steve Allee, piano
Original compositions and great American standards.
Location: Cohen Family Studio Theater
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8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 21
Mara Helmuth, composition
Pianists Shiau-uen Ding and Kristofer Rucinsky perform Helmuth’s All Alarms Sounding, a new work for two pianos and 8-channel electronics. This recital also features from O for two cellos and electronics, along with works from the Sonic Refuges projects, which was inspired by Helmuth’s trip to Australia.
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
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4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 25
Michael Chertock, piano
Featuring the music of Ravel, Prokofiev, Stravinsky and Messiaen.
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
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The previously announced Sept. 26 performance by Thomas Baresel, Amy Johnson, Kenneth Griffiths and Mark Gibson has been rescheduled for 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017. The performance will remain in the Robert J. Werner Recital Hall.
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8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 27
Commercial Music Production Faculty Concert
Experience the musical innovations of CCM’s Commercial Music Production (CMP) faculty members with a concert program featuring musical genres from across the globe! For this concert, our faculty artists perform original music with their own groups and also collectively as the CMP Faculty Group! CMP Program Director Kim Pensyl performs with faculty members Aaron Jacobs, John Taylor and Rusty Burge, along with faculty emeritus Rick VanMatre. CMP faculty artists Jim Connerely, Dan Karlsberg and Ric Hordinski also perform during this special event, which is the first concert presented by the CMP department!
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
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7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 11
CCM Faculty Jazztet
CCM’s world-famous jazz faculty artists show off their skills with a set of cool charts and blazing solos!
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
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8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 1
Percussion Group Cincinnati
Featuring music by Cage, Stockhausen and a premiere from CCM alumnus Mark Saya.
Location: Patricia Corbett Theater
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Event Information
All events listed here take place in CCM Village on the campus of the University of Cincinnati. Admission to Faculty Artist Series performances is free and reservations are not required.

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 uc.edu/parking for information on parking rates.

For detailed maps and directions, please visit uc.edu/visitors. 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.uc.edu/about/directions.

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

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A preeminent institution for the performing and media arts, CCM is the largest single source of performing arts presentations in the state of Ohio.

All event dates and programs are subject to change. For a complete calendar of events, please visit us online at ccm.uc.edu.

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CCM Video: Introducing CCM’s Summer Film Scoring Institute

Earlier this month, CCM launched a new two-week immersion program in contemporary film music composition and production.

Under the direction of CCM Professor of Commercial Music Production Thomas Haines, the CCM Film Scoring Institute gives young composers the opportunity to work with acclaimed industry professionals like Blake Neely (TV’s Arrow and The Mentalist), Jeff Rona (movies Traffic, Black Hawk Down and The Thin Red Line), Tyler Bates (TV’s Californication and Low Winter Sun), Jack Smalley (movie orchestration on The Last of the Mohicans, The Gladiator and Conan the Barbarian) and Lennie Moore (video games Fighter Within and Halo: Combat Evolved).

From June 2 – 13, students will experience 60 hours of instruction in writing labs, master classes and recording studios.

In today’s video, Haines and Neely discuss the industry in general and what our young recruits are doing during their residency at CCM. Stay tuned for more behind-the-scenes looks at this exciting new summer program.

Learn more about the CCM Film Scoring Institute by visiting ccm.uc.edu/summer/film_scoring.

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Become a CCM Insider: Subscribe to THE VILLAGE NEWS

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A static image of the summer  2014 issue of THE VILLAGE NEWS.

Click here to subscribe to THE VILLAGE NEWS.

What’s the best way to keep up with CCM’s remarkable faculty, students, alumni, friends and benefactors? Subscribe to THE VILLAGE NEWS, CCM’s new electronic newsletter.

  • Learn about the CCM student and alumni-led Whiz Kids Music Program, which is making a difference in disadvantaged schools throughout Cincinnati.
  • Watch all 75 current Musical Theatre majors perform CCM alumnus Stephen Flaherty’s (BM, 1982) “On the Wings of a Dream” in tribute to UC alumnus and supporter Otto M. Budig Jr.
  • Find out where CCM’s latest Fulbright grant-recipient will be studying next year.
  • Read what the New York Times had to say about CCM’s string quartet-in-residence, the Ariel Quartet.
  • Get to know CCM’s newest faculty members.

Subscribe to THE VILLAGE NEWS and we will deliver these transformational stories to your inbox throughout the year. If you missed our SUMMER 2014 issue, sign up today and we’ll send you a copy!

Have a story of your own? Share it with us today.

And don’t worry: we will continue to provide you with breaking news through the CCM Blog, too!

Find out more about THE VILLAGE NEWS by visiting ccm.uc.edu/villagenews.

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CCM Commercial Music Production Student Competes in National Songwriter Competition

Commercial Music Production major Léa Verlin.

Commercial Music Production major Léa Verlin.

You can see and hear second year Commercial Music Production (CMP) major Léa Verlin in action thanks to Guitar Center’s “Singer Songwriter with Don Was” competition. Verlin is participating in this year’s contest, which is open to individual singer-songwriters performing original music and offers the chance to win a four-song EP produced by Grammy-winner Don Was along with $25,000 in cash.

Out of the nearly 10,000 songwriters participating, Verlin’s entry is currently ranked in the top 100! Each week, the 10 submissions with the most online activity will be selected for review by the competition’s judging panel.  Show your support by listening to and then sharing her song “Flying High” here. You can also watch her video for “Flying High” below.

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CCM Commercial Music Production Student Releases Second Album

CCM freshman Bryard Huggins recently released his second album, 'Visual.'

CCM freshman Bryard Huggins recently released his second album, ‘Visual.’

CCM introduced a new bachelor of music degree in Commercial Music Production (CMP) last fall and that program is already producing young stars!

At the age of 18, first year CMP major Bryard Huggins has recently released his second album, entitled Visual. Originally from Nashville, Tennessee, Huggins released his debut album, entitled Artistic Touch, in October 2011. That effort featured music he began writing at the age of 11.

Released in August, Visual is now available on iTunesAmazon, Spotify, Raditaz, eMusic, Soundcloud and Tower. The album is described as a blend of smooth jazz with world music vibes and features four original songs, along with Huggins’ arrangement of the popular jazz standard “Water to Drink (Aqua de Beber).” The album was recorded at Studio One in Jacksonville, Florida. Two of the songs were done completely live featuring a bassist and drummer. Huggins was heavily involved in the production process along with other talented musicians and producers.

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Getting to Know UC Cincinnatus Presidential Scholarship Recipients Michael Dudley and Christa Iwu

Two CCM students are among the University of Cincinnati’s 13 incoming freshmen awarded full, $88,000 Cincinnatus Presidential scholarships. Since 1997, UC’s Cincinnatus Scholarship Program has provided different levels of awards for academic achievement, leadership and commitment to community service. As part of their scholarship commitment, each scholarship recipient will perform 30 hours of community service each year. The full, $88,000 awards cover tuition, fees, room and board and books.

Michael Dudley and Christa Iwu recently spoke with UC’s Dawn Fuller about why they chose UC’s College-Conservatory of music to pursue their studies.

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CCM Offers New Undergraduate Major in Commercial Music Production

CCM is now accepting applications for an innovative new bachelor of music degree in Commercial Music Production (CMP) that will be offered beginning fall semester 2012. This unique program combines core training in music theory, composition, arranging and musicianship with recording studio techniques, commercial music, songwriting, film scoring and media technologies.

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