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Matthew Westgate sitting with hands clasped.

Leonard Bernstein said: “...we must never forget that music is movement, always going somewhere, shifting and changing, and flowing, from one note to another.” His words are a reminder that the only constant is change—in our lives, and in the arts. For as long as humans have been on Earth, they have recorded their experiences through literature, music, dance, art, philosophy, language, and other creative endeavors. In the Department of Music and Dance, we are all fortunate to have the incredible opportunity to celebrate and perpetuate this tradition of evolving expression every day. The common parenting phase, “the days are long, but the years are short,” rings true: the days are always full, and our lives are often busy. It can be easy to forget, if one doesn’t take time to reflect, that slowly, things are shifting around us.

Our amazing students, faculty, and staff continue to connect people through traditional concerts and performances, books, and articles, but we are also expanding our reach, relevance, and influence through new partnerships, innovative collaborations, and technological experiments. Our rehearsal rooms, dance studios, classrooms, and concert halls still celebrate in-person communication and expression, emotional connection, patience, artistry, and teamwork. At the same time, as a department we are also imagining, discussing, and implementing new ideas and methods and challenging curricular norms. It’s an exciting time for our department!

— Matthew Westgate
Chair, Department of Music and Dance