Spotlight on our Graduating Seniors
Wednesday, May 24, 2023
Wednesday, May 24, 2023
Each year, we ask our faculty to recommend seniors whom they feel have distinguished themselves by virtue of their achievements, by acting as an example for others, or by overcoming challenges. Here are excerpts from those responses - congratulations to these students, and to all of our graduating seniors!
Timothy Goliger — BM Music Education (Voice) and Choral Conducting Certificate; accepted to MM Choral Conducting, New England Conservatory
Described as a “triple threat” by voice professor Bill Hite, Timothy is an immensely talented singer, keyboard player, and conductor. Hite also cites Timothy’s exceptional level of professionalism and his willingness to take on a leadership role within the voice area. As further proof of his ability, Tim has already been accepted to New England Conservatory’s graduate program in choral conducting - a rare feat, according to choral director Lindsay Pope, as graduate conducting candidates normally require at least a few years of teaching experience prior to acceptance.
Héloïse Goncalves — BM Music Education
A native of France, Héloïse is described as a “self-starter,” and a multi-talented artist involved in studying piano, classical voice, and jazz voice. A music theory class with UMass professor Miriam Piilonen, followed by a songwriting class with Grammy nominee Charlie Puth, inspired Héloïse to found the UMass Songwriting and Production Club, which is now a Registered Student Organization with 200 members. Héloïse’s primary instrument is piano, but has also made her mark as a vocalist, particularly in Vocal Jazz Ensemble; she just completed a semester of student teaching in the Amherst Public Schools.
Enoch Hsiao – Dual Degree: BA Applied Music (Piano Performance) and BS Computer Science, Mathematics minor, Commonwealth Honors College
According to piano professor Gilles Vonsattel, “Enoch has been an extraordinary presence in my studio, and could easily be a top pianist at any music conservatory.” He recently won a fellowship to attend Aspen Music School to study with the noted pianist Hung-Kuan Chen. For his senior honors project, Enoch used computer science to help students and faculty explore ethical conundrums; he already has a contract to work as a software developer with DraftKings.
Natalie Mundis - BM Performance (Tuba); accepted to MM Tuba Performance at Boston University
Natalie is a key leader of our brass area, one who consistently leads by example with her preparation and her playing. As a performer, Natalie is “eager, tenacious, takes risks with confidence, and constantly raises intelligent questions. She can play a variety of styles well and makes any group she plays with sound better,” according to Wind Ensemble director Matthew Westgate. In addition to her performance studies, Natalie played a critical role in overseeing our stage production crew, taking responsibility for staff scheduling and technical needs for the department’s concerts in Bezanson Recital Hall over the past two years.
Dylan Walter — BA Jazz & African American Music (Piano), Anthropology minor
JAAMS director Jeff Holmes singled out Dylan for his impressive versatility as a musician – in addition to piano, Dylan plays guitar and cornet, and is also an accomplished vocalist, composer, and arranger. Holmes also commented on Dylan’s willingness to contribute in any way he can; for example, assisting other students with recording their recitals, performing with the faculty ensemble at this year’s Jazz Showcase, and representing UMass by performing with his jazz quintet at the Jazz Educators Network National Conference in January. Dylan also performs with his own rock band, Rust Bucket, that plays on campus and in the local area.
Monroe Randall - Dual Degree: BA Applied Music (Cello Performance) and BA Social Thought & Political Economy; Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies minor; accepted to MM Cello Performance at Boston University.
According to Cello Professor Ed Arron, “Monroe has been an exemplary musical citizen in our department and is one of the hardest working students I have ever had.” That dedication is evident in how Monroe collaborates with colleagues and assists with facilitating the activities of the string area, all without fanfare. Despite the many obligations of being a double-major, they even stepped up to fill a vacancy in the department’s graduate string quartet for a semester. Monroe was accepted into several excellent graduate programs and has settled on Boston University to pursue a Master’s.