Four must-see music performances at UNCSA this spring

With over 30 School of Music performances this semester, it can be hard to decide which ones to attend. From operas to jazz ensembles, guest artists to symphonies, the School works hard to curate a season that will appeal to any music lover. 

We caught up with a few faculty members to ask which performance(s) they are most looking forward to this upcoming semester. Here are the exciting experiences they selected — in chronological order.

Celebrating UNCSA Woodwinds: Baroque to Contemporary, Feb. 4

Oboe faculty Jaren Atherholt looks forward to the Woodwind Celebration concert most. “I am excited to play with my colleagues and share so much great music with our UNCSA and Winston-Salem community,” adds Atherholt. This concert – which will feature Atherholt alongside faculty members Robert Young, Tadeu Coelho and Oskar Espina Ruiz and guest artist Jessica Kunttu – is also a welcome and celebration of the new bassoon faculty member Stephanie Patterson.

UNCSA Woodwind Faculty

UNCSA Woodwind faculty members, from left to right: Robert Young, Jaren Atherholt, Oskar Espina Ruiz, Stephanie Patterson and Tadeu Coelho / Photo: Wayne Reich

Atherholt explains that the program is diverse and exciting, mainly featuring music by female composers, including “Sonata Terza, Op. 16 (1693)” by Isabella Leonarda, “Duo Sonata for two Bassoons” by Sofia Gubaidulina, “Trio Toccata” by Valerie Coleman and “Brokenvention Trio” by Alyssa Morris. 

UNCSA Chamber Music Festival, March 14 & 18

This March, the School of Music presents the spring edition of the UNCSA Chamber Music Festival with two concerts featuring faculty, students, alumni and guest artists. Horn faculty Maria Serkin, one of the featured faculty members, is especially excited about this event, where she will perform Beethoven Sextet in E-flat Major, Op. 81b on Tuesday, March 14.

maria serkin

Horn faculty Maria Serkin performing at the fall UNCSA Wind Ensemble concert featuring music by Omar Thomas. / Photo: Wayne Reich

“This is a faculty/student collaboration and my last opportunity to perform with my student Elijah Barclift,” explains Serkin. She adds that she hopes to play with Barclift again one day when “he returns to UNCSA for a guest recital as an esteemed alumnus.” Guest artists featured at the festival include violist Tatjana Masurenko, cellist Peter Wiley and alumnus composer Tyson Davis. 

UNCSA Percussion Ensemble, March 26

An exciting program showcasing the talented percussion students, this spring concert is bittersweet for department chair John Beck. “This will be my final performance as the director of the UNCSA Percussion Ensemble,” explains Beck.


Percussion student performing at the 2022 Jazz Ensemble concert featuring Jon Metzger. / Photo: Wayne Reich

“After 25 years of studio teaching, I am transitioning to a new role at UNCSA as the liaison and program coordinator in our new partnership with the Intergenerational Center for Arts and Wellness that is scheduled to open next Fall at Senior Services of Winston-Salem.”

UNCSA Symphony Orchestra with Guillermo Figueroa, April 29

Beck is especially excited about “Symphonie Fantastique” by Hector Berlioz which will “feature two timpanists and church bells in the last movement.”

symphony orchestra

Symphony Orchestra performance in October 2022 featuring conductor Robert Franz. / Photo: Wayne Reich

This Symphony Orchestra will be led by guest conductor and violinist Guillermo Figueroa and will also feature Ernesto Coredero’s Violin Concerto and Jennifer Higdon’s “Blue Cathedral.” Figueroa is a Grammy-award-winning artist who serves as the principal conductor of The Santa Fe Symphony Orchestra & Chorus, amongst other prestigious positions. 

Purchase your tickets for these experiences and discover more performances — created and performed by talented students and world-class faculty, distinguished alumni and celebrated guest artists — by visiting the UNCSA Performance Calendar.

View the UNCSA Performance Calendar today.

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January 31, 2023