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2010.01.27 > For Immediate Release
contact: Beverly Newsam - University Relations
phone: 402.554.2129 - e-mail: bnewsam@mail.unomaha.edu

UNO to Host Second Annual BOCH Honors Festival Jan. 29-31

Omaha - More than 500 of the finest student musicians from more than 115 Nebraska and Iowa high schools will converge on Omaha this weekend for the Second Annual University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) Bands, Orchestra Chorus at the Holland (BOCH) Honors Festival.  The event will take place Friday through Sunday, Jan. 29-31, at UNO and the Holland Performing Arts Center.

Students participating in the festival were nominated by their high school music teachers and were chosen through a competitive audition process for membership in one of five festival music ensembles.  

James Saker, professor of music and director of University Bands, is the BOCH Festival coordinator.  Matt Harden, associate professor of music, is responsible for the Honor Choir.  Barry Ford, instructor of music, is in charge of the String Orchestra, and Courtney Snyder, assistant professor of music, is responsible for the Honor Bands. 

The ensembles and their guest conductors:
- Maverick Honor Band, Larry Blocher from Troy State University in Alabama;
- Durango Honor Band, Emily Thrienan from Shenandoah Virginia Conservatory;
- Honor String Orchestra, Michael Gesme from Central Oregon College;
- Honor Mixed Chorus, James Stegall from Western Illinois University; and
- Honor Women's Chorus, Greg Zielke from Grace University.

The BOCH honor groups will rehearse on the UNO campus Friday afternoon and evening, and all day Saturday.  In addition to working with guest conductors, students and their music teachers will participate in instructional master classes with UNO music faculty members and attend a Friday evening recital featuring performance faculty members from the UNO Department of Music.

On Saturday, the University Chamber Choir, Chamber Orchestra and Symphonic Wind Ensemble will present a concert for participants at 3 p.m. in the Strauss Performing Arts Center at UNO.  The concert is free and open to the public. 

Final concerts on Sunday at the Holland Performing Arts Center, 13th and Douglas streets, include performances by the Durango Honor Band and Women's Chorus at 1 p.m. and the Maverick Honor Band, String Orchestra and Mixed Chorus at 3 p.m. 

Final concert tickets cost $10 for adults and $8 for seniors and students. Tickets can be purchased online at Ticket Omaha (http://www.ticketomaha.com/) or at the Holland Ticket Office the day of the event.  One ticket admits each individual to both concerts.

Funding for the festival includes generous support from private donors.  The gift includes scholarship awards for top musicians in the groups to continue their musical experience at UNO.

For more information, contact the UNO Department of Music at (402) 554-2251 or visit http://www.unomaha.edu/music/specialevents/honorfestival.php for a complete schedule of events.

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The University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) is Nebraska’s metropolitan university. The core values of the institution place students at the center of all that the university does; call for the campus to strive for academic excellence; and promote community engagement that transforms and improves urban, regional, national and global life. UNO, inaugurated in 1968, emerged from the Municipal University of Omaha, established in 1931, which grew out of the University of Omaha founded in 1908.

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