Musical variety fills fall schedule

Semester offers festive events, shows featuring crooners


Denis Perez / The Advocate

Music department Chairperson Stephanie Austin (left) directs music major Laurena Alm (right) during Vocal Chamber Music class on Monday.

By Efrain Valdez, Advocate Staff

The music department at Contra Costa College is preparing for big events and trips for the 2016 fall semester and 2017 spring semester.

Music department Chairperson Stephanie Austin said she is “very excited” for all the events coming up. Her excitement peaked when she mentioned recent auditions.

“We just had our auditions to determine the Jazzanova and Jazz-ology teams for this year,” Dr. Austin said. The results of the auditions were posted on her office door on Tuesday.

Students were very anxious and excited to find out which team they would be placed on.

These groups will have their first performance on Nov. 4 in Morro Bay at the Cuesta Festival.

The day before the Cuesta Festival, the music department will also be hosting its first Contra Costa College High School Chorale Festival on campus.

Austin said, “We’ve invited (high) schools from around the area to come and perform, receive comments and tour our facilities.”

In addition, the music department is also working on a big event for the spring.

“We’ve put together a collaboration between two orchestras and four choirs,” she said.

They will be performing a Grammy- winning album that is comprised of 12 different songs, each sung in a different language.

The work produced by students in the music department wouldn’t be possible without the fundraising done by the students.

“The students sell tickets for concerts, ads and ask for donations to pay for traveling expenses and CD recordings,” Austin said.

CCC music major Ci Ci Taylor said the sales of CD recordings, concert ticket sales and donations will be used to pay for as much of the cost for trips like the Cuesta Festival at Morro Bay, and instruments for the class.

Vocal performance major Laurena Alm praised the music department’s professors for instilling a sense of “family” and purpose among students.

“We either sink or swim together,” Alm said.

Taylor praised Austin and the rest of the faculty in the music department for being so caring and helpful to the students.

She said the work done by the music department faculty has motivated the students to fundraise money for their program.

The music department is preparing for a year full of events, trips and fundraiser that will help its students and community grow.