Steve Parker (D.M.A., Music, 2012) is the recipient of this year’s Tito’s Prize, a $15,000 cash award funded by the Texas vodka company and administered through Austin arts organization Big Medium, who give the winning artist a solo show staged during the East Austin Studio. Initiated last year, the Tito’s Prize is the largest cash prize granted to an Austin visual artist.
Daniel Madrid (M.M., Music, 2013) has been hired as the Executive Assistant to the General Manager of the Metropolitan Opera House.
Jonathan Santore (M.M., Composition, 1987) has been awarded the 2018 Distinguished Teaching Award at Plymouth State University, where he's taught since 1994. He previously received the PSU Award for Distinguished Scholarship in 2011.
Hank Hehmsoth (M.M., Applied Music/Voice/Piano, 1976) has been awarded a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for his ongoing project, Reminiscences of NEA Jazz Master Dan Morganstern. The project will capture Morgenstern’s first-hand reminiscences and decades-spanning scholarly research on Kansas City jazz and its big bands, as well as preeminent individual artists and their styles and innovations. Hehmsoth received his first NEA grant in 1979.
Alan E. Hicks (D.M.A., Music, 2009) has been appointed Director of Opera Theatre at San Diego State University in a newly created joint position with San Diego Opera. In addition to his duties at SDSU, Dr. Hicks will serve on the staff of San Diego Opera.
Claire Costin (B.F.A., Music Performance, 2004) was installed as a board director on the Alpha Phi Foundation 2018-2020 Board of Directors on June 23, 2018.
Joseph Kingma (D.M.A., Piano Performance, 2017) has been appointed assistant professor of piano at Palm Beach Atlantic University. He previously worked as the assistant professor of music at Louisiana College. Photo by Michelle Palmer.
Andrew Rudin (B.M., Composition, 1962) received an American Academy of Arts & Letters Music Award in May 2018. A grant from the Academy will support two new CD's and a March 2019 concert at The Academy will feature his music. He will be a guest composer in April 2019 at Piano on the Rocks festival in Sedona, Arizona, and in May of that same year, his opera, "Purewater" will have its premier with the Center for Contemporary Opera in NYC.
Suzanne Ramo (D.M.A., Performance, 2013) joins the Texas State University in the fall of 2018 as Assistant Professor of Voice. Previously she was Assistant Professor of Voice and Director of Opera Workshop at West Texas A&M University, where she led the opera workshop to their first national award in the National Opera Association's opera production competition with her production of Menotti’s "The Medium." She also recently performed the role of Violetta in Verdi’s "La Traviata" with Amarillo Opera, available for viewing on pbs.org. (photo by Kristin Hoebermann)
Hai Zheng Olefsky (M.M., Applied Music/Voice/Piano, 1990), assistant professor of music at Southwestern University, was honored by Austin Mayor Steve Adler and the Austin City Council with a special proclamation on Thursday, May 10, 2018 for her 18 years of community work as Artistic Director for the Young Musicians Festival Competition at the Asian American Cultural Center.