Schuster Center, Celebration of the Arts

Ensembles & Performance Opportunities

The University of Dayton's Department of Music offers a variety of instrumental and vocal ensembles that allow you to keep music in your life, to express yourself creatively and to earn cost-free arts credits that count towards your graduation. All ensembles are open to students from all academic majors, and perform regularly on- and off-campus.  Many have been featured on our yearly Celebration of the Arts performance at the Schuster Center, Dayton’s premier performance venue.

In addition to ensemble participation, you might be interested in taking private lessons with one of our talented faculty. You may choose from half hour (1 sem hr), 45 minute (2 sem hr), or full hour lessons (4 sem hr). Group classes in piano, voice and guitar are also available for beginners. Private instruction is open to all students on campus.

Vocal Ensembles

Choral Union

Tuesday and Thursday, 3:00 - 4:15 pm

Choral Union performances range from musical theater to folk songs and spirituals to traditional European and American classical choral literature. Choral Union has collaborated with the University Chorale to present choral masterworks with orchestra and professional soloists.

Contact: Dr. Robert Jones

Ebony Heritage Singers

Tuesday, 6:30 - 8:00 pm

The Ebony Heritage Singers perform music from the African-American sacred music tradition. The ensemble has performed for several professional conferences, including the National Association for Music Education and the American Choral Directors Association. The group presents two major concerts annually on campus and performs on tour. Students from various academic disciplines and ethnic backgrounds serve as ambassadors for racial reconciliation through their participation in EHS.

Contact: Dr. Donna Cox

Hands in Harmony

Thursday, 7:00 - 9:15 pm

Perform popular and contemporary Christian music in American Sign Language for both hearing and hearing-impaired audiences. While no previous signing experience is needed, all members must have a desire to learn ASL and develop an understanding of the deaf culture. Hands in Harmony has performed for the Ohio Music Education Association conference as well as for various music therapy conferences.

Contact: Professor Heidi Reynolds

Opera Workshop

Tuesday and Thursday, 12:00 - 1:15 pm

Develop the solo voice, acting, and staging techniques through the medium of lyric theatre scenes in the Spring semester and full productions in the Fall. Opera Workshop has performed for the national convention of the National Opera Association, and locally at major theatrical venues in Dayton. Students also reach out to local schools and nonprofit organizations with its tour "Opera On Wheels."

Contact: Dr. Minnita Daniel-Cox

University Chorale

Monday and Wednesday, 2:00 - 2:50 pm; Friday 2:15 - 4:15 pm

The University Chorale, an auditioned mixed ensemble, performs sacred and secular compositions from all musical eras. Chorale has performed with the Dayton Opera, the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus, the Dayton Bach Society, and the Sarajevo Philharmonic, and often joins with Choral Union and professional soloists to present choral masterworks. Chorale has sung for regional conferences, including the Ohio Music Education Association and the American Choral Directors Association. Chorale tours frequently, most recently completing their fourth trip to Europe.

Contact: Dr. Robert Jones

World Music Choir

Monday, 6:00 - 8:00 pm

World Music Choir singers explore and perform a diverse repertoire of world choral music in its cultural and historical content with the help of cultural "informants," either in person or through the use of audio and video technology. Performances often include accompanying percussion instruments and movement.

Contact: Dr. Sharon Davis Gratto

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Instrumental Ensembles

Dayton Jazz Ensemble

Monday, Wednesday and Friday 12:00 - 12:50 pm; and Tuesday and Thursday 12:00 - 1:15 pm

The Dayton Jazz Ensemble is an auditioned big band that offers a traditional and contemporary experience combining the skill of interpreting challenging written music with the art of improvisation. The ensemble performs at local and regional concerts, at high school and college jazz festivals, and other invited musical events, including the Ohio Music Education Association conference.  DJE also performs frequently with local, regional, and internationally known jazz artists. 

Contact: Dr. Willie L. Morris, III

Early Music Ensemble

Thursday, 6:30 - 8:00 pm

Using the University of Dayton's collection of recorders, lutes, cornamuses, krumhorns, viola da gambas and keyboard instruments, members of this ensemble present historically-informed performances of vocal and instrumental works from the Middle Ages to the present day. No prior experience in early music is necessary.

Contact: Dr. Samuel Dorf

Flyer Jazz Lab Band

Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 2:00 - 2:50 pm

The Flyer Jazz Lab Band offers the opportunity to study the fundamental elements of jazz improvisation and styles and perform big band jazz at the beginning and intermediate levels.

Contact: Professor Matthew Anklan 

Flyer Pep Band

The Flyer Pep Band performs for the Dayton Flyer's regular basketball season and tournament home games, and often receives coverage on ESPN and other national networks.  Members are auditioned in October.

Contact: Dr. Willie L. Morris, III

Javanese Gamelan Ensemble

Thursday, 5:00 - 7:00 pm

The Gamelan Ensemble plays traditional music from Central Java, as well as contemporary compositions, on campus and around Dayton. Participants learn to play all of the instruments in the ensemble, which were custom made for the University of Dayton in Indonesia.

Contact: Dr. Heather MacLachlan

Percussion Ensemble and Winter Drumline

Meeting winter semester only, these two ensembles offer a variety of performance opportunities for student percussionists. The Percussion Ensemble plays both standard and contemporary literature. For those who love rudimental drumming, Winter Drumline is an exciting group that performs both on-campus and at community events.

Contact: Professor James Leslie

Pride of Dayton Marching Band

Monday and Wednesday, 4:00 - 6:15 pm, and Friday, 4:00 - 5:30 pm

Generate Flyer spirit in performances at UD football games, on campus, throughout the community, and nationally as a member of the Pride of Dayton (POD). Enjoy high performance standards and get to know other students from various backgrounds and interests.  POD consists of winds, percussion, colorguard, twirlers, and a dance team--the Flyerettes. POD is open to all UD students as well as students from Wright State University and Sinclair Community College.

Learn more about POD >>

Contact: Professor Jeff Lehman 

Symphonic Wind Ensemble

Tuesday and Thursday, 4:30 - 6:30 pm

The Symphonic Wind Ensemble performs the finest literature written for winds and percussion in four annual concerts, both on and off campus. As part of the Wind Ensemble program, works for various chamber ensembles drawn from the large group are also programmed throughout the year. The resulting musical experience provides members with the opportunity to perform quality literature selected from a wide repertoire. An audition is required.

Contact: Dr. Patrick Reynolds

University Concert Band

In the University Concert Band, members perform varied repertoire, including marches, show tunes, concert band standards, and contemporary literature.  This ensemble meets only during the spring semester and performs two on-campus concerts and occasionally an off-campus performance.

Contact: Professor Jeff Lehman

University Jazz Band

Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 2:00 - 2:50 pm

The University Jazz Band is an auditioned ensemble that offers an opportunity for students who want to play jazz in a less formal way. The band focuses on traditional big band and swing era music, teaching students how to improvise and develop an understanding of various jazz performance styles. The University Jazz Band performs four concerts a year.

Contact: Professor James Leslie

University Orchestra

Monday and Wednesday, 4:30 - 6:30 pm

The University Orchestra is an auditioned ensemble that performs a broad repertoire for string orchestra in the fall semester and full symphony orchestra in the spring semester. In addition to four concerts presented each year, the orchestra regularly collaborates in choral and operatic performances with the University Chorale and Opera Workshop. 

Contact: Dr. Patrick Reynolds

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Additional Opportunities

Chamber Ensembles

You can also get involved with a variety chamber ensembles, including: Flute Ensemble, Clarinet Ensemble, Horn Choir, Trumpet Ensemble, Cello Choir, string, saxophone and horn quartets, and woodwind and brass quintets. Each group is coached by a music faculty member. Chamber ensembles perform often on campus and at regional and national conferences, and have competed in prestigious international music competitions.

Contact: Dr. Willie Morris, III 

Musical Theater

The theatre program offers a Spring musical that is produced in conjunction with music faculty. In addition to the onstage roles, music students have the opportunity to play in the pit orchestra, and to learn about the technical aspects of costuming, set design and building, and lighting. Auditions are held at the end of the Fall semester. 

Contact: Theatre Program

Pop A Cappella Ensembles

Multiple opportunities exist for student-directed, faculty advised pop a cappella ensembles. Groups have performed in various venues including church conferences, university functions, and concert settings.

Contact: Professor Joe Whately

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