OSWEGO — SUNY Oswego faculty and student musicians will raise scholarship funds during the eclectic and fast-moving annual “Collage” concert, at 7:30 p.m. March 2, in Tyler Hall’s Waterman Theatre.
Senior music major Angela Russell, who will perform a Pietro Mascagni aria titled “Voi Lo Sapete,” has seen firsthand how funds raised by “Collage” have helped students and the expanding music program.
“I’ve found a happy little family here,” she said, while sitting in the lobby of the renovated Tyler Hall arts building. “It’s full of incredibly talented professors whose main goal is to help the students succeed. If you’re willing to put in the work, the faculty will do anything for you.”
Music faculty member Mihoko Tsutsumi, for example, has really helped Russell refine and improve her singing technique. Russell has had a range opportunities, including performing in three operas through the Oswego Opera Theatre.
Russell herself has been among the scholarship recipients, as the money “helped me stay here as long as I needed to,” she said. “It also feels really good to be awarded a scholarship to recognize the hard work that you do, for the sake of your professors and yourself.”
Paul Leary, the music faculty member coordinating the concert, said the program will be a “big mix of everything that’s happening in our department,” including jazz, classical, choral and vocal, a four-piece student guitar-rock band with original work and perhaps more styles once auditions are complete.
“People should come and see the great work we’re doing,” Leary said. “Just being in the seats is helping support the music program and scholarships for our students.”
Leary also teaches a “Music Business” class where students are gaining hands-on experience by promoting the concert. The class includes a local promotional team doing grassroots outreach; an online promotion group working on digital and social content; a print team creating posters and flyers; and a media group creating videos to promote and document various aspects of the effort. Representatives of the various teams comprise a steering committee coordinating everything, as in many arts organizations.
Luis Rodriguez, a junior music major in the class, serves as the general manager of the promotional effort. It is both a learning experience and an exercise in teamwork.
Communication and execution have been the two biggest keys to working well, he said. “You have to have an open line of communication to reach everybody,” Rodriguez explained. “And people have really good ideas, but you have to make sure they can see things through.”
The class also gives Rodriguez and others a glimpse of what goes into successful promotion for any effort. “I really have a deep feeling for this class,” he said. “This is a different side of the industry that is more and more in the hands of artists because of independence and technology. We’re learning you can make a living on this side of the music industry.”
Tickets for “Collage” cost $8 for general admission — $5 for SUNY Oswego students, youths and senior citizens — with proceeds supporting the Music Department Excellence Fund.
Tickets are available at any SUNY Oswego box office, online at tickets.oswego.edu or by calling 315-312-2141.
Parking is included in the price of a ticket and is available in the employee and commuter lots in front of Culkin Hall and behind Hart and Funnelle residence halls.