Music faculty and students prepare for Winter Festival

Erik Uyemura

Staff Writer


FDU’s Visual and Performing Arts Department soon will celebrate the 13th annual Winter Festival Concert on the Florham Campus.

The event will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 11 in the Dreyfuss Theater. It will feature performances of a variety of classical, popular and seasonal music.

FDU’s music faculty members will perform the music, along with the campus chorus, chamber choir and band.

This year’s performing faculty members are: Kevin Brown (bass), Allen Cohen (piano), Stephen Girardi (guitar), Mariana Karpatova (voice), Peter Toth (piano) and Elzbieta Winnicki (violin).

Girardi, a music faculty member and composer who is performing for his seventh year, said that he loves performing at the concert.

“It’s a great way for the students to come out and enjoy hearing faculty members and other really talented students perform. This year I’ll be performing as a duo with my good friend and faculty member, Kevin Brown. We’ll be performing one of my new original compositions titled ‘New Vision.’ The tune has a lot of room for improvisation so it’s really a lot of fun to play and experiment with musical ideas,” said Girardi.

Student Christian Aguilera, a band member who plays clarinet, said that the campus band is practicing consistently. Even though there are some difficulties, he has high hopes for the group.

Aguilera said that the band is going to perform its rendition of Michael Jackson’s “Rock with You” and the song “Jamaican Rumba” by Australian composer Arthur Benjamin. The band also will perform other songs that some members of the audience are familiar with.

Cohen, a professor of music and conductor of the three groups, said that this year’s event will be special. He said the campus band will perform “Highland Cathedral” with the Union City Police and Fire Pipes and Drums.

Cohen explained how the event is beneficial for those who will attend. He said that it gives students a chance to perform and learn more about music. He also said that it will help students realize that these music groups are on campus.

Aguilera said that event shows that the music department is active and will put in great effort to please the crowd.

Girardi said the audience will enjoy the concert, adding, “I believe people should come to the Winter Music Festival to enjoy some great music and also to hear some of the truly talented faculty members that are on staff at FDU. I’m the guitar instructor here and many of my guitar students actually signed up after attending one of these concerts. It’s also a way for the faculty to give back to the students and say thanks.”

Admission to the concert is $5, but it is free for FDU students with ID.

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