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.
Robert “Beto” Skiles (M.M., Composition, 1977) was inducted into the Austin Jazz Hall of Fame in April. His band, “Beto and the Fairlanes” were inducted into the Austin Music Hall of Fame in February.
Hyeyoung Song (D.M.A., Piano Performance, 2006) performed Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 23 in A major with the Fort Worth Symphony Chamber Orchestra at the Marjorie Black Alkek Performing Arts Center on April 21. Dr. Song is a concert pianist and artist-in-residence at Weatherford College.
Nicole Christine Haywood (B.M., Music Performance, 2014) won the audition for the Assistant Principal and Second Bassoon position of the Grant Park Orchestra in Chicago. (photo by Rene Hernandez)
Matt Hightower (D.M.A., Music, 2014) was appointed Assistant Professor of Tuba/Euphonium at the University of Kentucky and will begin in the fall of 2018. (photo by Arnold Garza)
Eddie Lopez's (B.M., Music Studies, 2008) company, Perform America–TX, is sponsoring the Butler School of Music alumni gathering at the 2018 Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA) conference in San Antonio. Lopez also pledged the Edward R. Lopez Endowed Scholarship in Music in 2017 for undergraduate UT music majors.
Dr. Mary Ellen Cavitt (Ph.D., Music Education, 1998) was recently promoted from her position as Professor of Music Education and Associate Dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communication to Assistant Vice President for Academic Services at Texas State University in San Marcos, Texas.
Brandon Hendrix (D.M.A., Composition, 2010) serves as director of instrumental and choral ensembles and department chair at Eastern Oklahoma State College in Wilburton, Oklahoma, where he resides with his wife and two children. In addition to teaching private lessons and conducting the college's Concert Choir and Concert Band, Hendrix is actively involved in the school's Performing Arts Series.
Altin Sencalar (B.M., Jazz Performance, 2017) was chosen for the inaugural class of Geri Allen Fellows through the Carr Center in Detroit. The Gathering Jazz Orchestra is a two-year fellowship program for 14 people between the ages of 18 and 30 directed by Rodney Whitaker, former bassist with Jazz at Lincoln Center. Sencalar earned one of the two trombone spots.
James Sclater’s music featured at Mississippi Museum of Art
James Sclater's (D.M.A., Composition, 1970) music was recently featured at the Music in the City series at the Mississippi Museum of Art in Jackson. The program included two commissioned works, Variations and Toccata on a Theme by Paganni for solo piano and Sweet Swingin' Suite for violin, clarinet and piano. The Suite, commissioned by the Argot Trio, has recently been recorded by them on the Centaur label.