School of Music begins 100-year celebration with “School of Music on Parade”

The Singletary Center Concert Hall before Friday nigh’s concert. University of Kentucky held “UK School of Music on Parade” in the Singletary Center Concert Hall to showcase some of UK’s best musicians on Friday, September 7th, 2018 in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Michael Clubb | Staff

Neha Yousuf

UK’s School of Music has been going strong for 100 years, and the festivities to celebrate the anniversary began this weekend.

On Sept. 7 at the Singletary Center for the Arts, the School of Music kicked off its celebration for the school’s 100th anniversary with the School of Music on Parade. This show consisted of performances by the school’s large ensembles such as UK’s Chorale, Symphony Orchestra and Wind Symphony, its jazz and opera programs, a cappella favorites Paws and Listen and the acoUstiKats, and members of its renown faculty.

Songs like Celebration, Down by the Riverside, Boondocks, Roman Carnival, Firm Roots, Well You Needn’t, Estampie natalis and more were performed.

Performance groups bloomed in 1902 with a Kentucky State College Glee Club and in 1903 with Captain George L. Byroade’s military band. Some even say music began to arise in 1881 on campus. Finally, in 1918, music in all the formed groups became a program of study in the Department of Art and Music. Today, the department is celebrating the 100 years of its success and growth. 

The Singletary Center was full of friends of family and communal support, with standing ovations act after act and endless clapping.

“I love it, I think they are very seamless in their transitions, and the Jazz Cats were awesome, I loved the Jazz Cats!” said freshman Chloe Cardinale, who came to support some of her friends who were performing.

The man behind the entire event was distinguished musicologist and historian who serves as the Director of the School of Music, Dr. Stanley Pelkey. During the Parade, he hosted the event on stage and interviewed some senior members throughout the night. Some of his favorite accolades include the new academic programs that the School of Music has built, PhD programs in a number of key areas and music therapy, which is a highlighted area of growth in music studies. He said he believes that the quality of the ensembles keep getting better and better each year.

“It’s a tribute to just generations of fabulous ensemble conductors who have built these programs up over the last half century,” said Pelkey.

The School of Music will have many other events coming up to honor and celebrate the 100th anniversary. For dates of upcoming events and to learn more, visit the School of Music’s online event calendar.