Friday, October 29, 2010

How Does COD Referendum Impact the MAC?

On November 2 , College of DuPage will ask the voters of District 502 for permission to extend its bonding authority in the amount of 168 million dollars. A portion of that money would be earmarked for the renovation and refurbishment of the McAninch Arts Center.

We think that friends of the MAC should understand what we would do with approximately 22 million dollars.
  • Replace a 25-year old roof and HVAC system
  • Refurbish the Mainstage
    o Replace 25 year old seating,
    o Improve acoustics,
    o Become more Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant
  • Renovate Photography and Motion Picture/ Television instructional areas to match technology and program demand
  • Update existing classrooms with smart technology
  • Renovate existing space into dedicated dance and theatre rehearsal rooms
  • Address general storage and classroom issues resulting from twenty years of program growth

In short we will take care of a building that is committed to artistic and cultural pursuits.

The College recently updated its Facility Master Plan which is available at

COD Referendum Fact Sheet

Be well,

Thursday, October 21, 2010

So You Think You Can Play

by Amy Calhoun

Are you a musician? Do you want the world to see you play? Are you looking for a chance to perform internationally? Here is your chance to shine.

After a successful inaugural performance in 2009 with cellist Joshua Roman, the YouTube Symphony is again taking audition videos for the March 2011 performance at the Sydney Opera House. Michael Tilson Thomas will again conduct the performance and the CSO’s composer-in-residence Mason Bates has composed “Mothership” specifically for this international event.

Invitation from Joshua Roman.

So start practicing, submit your video by November 28 and maybe you, too, could be a part of one of the most awesome orchestral events in the world.

In the meantime, join us at the MAC when we welcome Joshua Roman back to the stage with New Philharmonic and maestro Kirk Muspratt on Nov. 5 and 6.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Bigger and Better at COD

by Michael Folker
Applied Music Coordinator

Student Music at COD….it just keeps getting better and better….bigger and bigger.

I’ve been associated with the music program at COD for over 20 years. Wow….can it really be that long?

During my time with the music program I’ve seen most of the ensembles and recital offerings start from ground up. I personally started the Percussion Ensemble many years ago back in the old portable buildings by building K. They no longer exist but I still refer to them as the old “army barracks”.

When we moved into the MAC, I again initiated an ensemble figuring on an enrollment of about 5 or 6. Thus, I assumed we could meet and rehearse in my studio. However, the first semester had around 14 sign up and we quickly realized that there was no way we would be meeting in my office. We regrouped and started officially in the large rehearsal room. Our first concert was given in the lobby of the Arts Center. Now, we’re on the mainstage.

Last spring’s Percussion Ensemble concert hit a new high in attendance…nearly 150. My former instructor from DePaul University attended the concert and commented that he had never seen that many people attend a percussion ensemble concert. Likewise, he and his wife commented that it was one of the most enjoyable percussion concerts they’ve ever attended. That truly speaks volumes not only for the percussion ensemble at COD but also for the caliber of all of our musical offerings.

Over the years we’ve been treated to wonderful performances by the guitar ensemble, chamber orchestra, jazz ensembles, choirs and now our new Faculty Showcase series.

What many may not know is that we also offer noontime recitals 2 to 3 times per semester. One of the newest is the student voice recital. This came about from the fact that we have so many talented student performers that we couldn’t fit them all in just one “end of the semester” recital. I recall the last time we tried to do that. Nearly a 2 ½ hour recital marathon. To their credit, almost everyone in the audience actually stayed to the end. I realized it was time for me to create a new program and thus initiated the vocal recital.

It’s always a treat to hear the variety of styles, repertoire, and talents. Many of our students have gone on to professional careers in music. I’m always delighted to receive a phone call, email, or even personal visit from one of my own past students who has gone on to make it in the music biz. That’s a wonderful testimony to what we do here. I know I speak for all of our faculty when I say how proud we are to see these kids go on to carve out a successful career in music.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

It's a WHOA moment

By Amy Calhoun

I have a 5-year-old son and I recently showed him this video of Diavolo.

With every leap, he exclaimed “Whoa!” I enjoy sharing these “whoa” moments with him and this Saturday the two of us will be in attendance to see Diavolo on the MAC stage. He won’t see any nuances in the performance. He won’t notice the way the music fits with the movements. But, he will feel the thrill of watching the performers leap through the air and I will get to see that look of amazement spread across his face.

Not every 5-year-old is ready to see Diavolo or sit through what we deem an adult performance. But the western suburbs offers many areas where you can share a “whoa” moment with your child. Check out any of these places or go to your own favorite spot and create fun memories with your child this weekend.

Morton Arboretum
Brookfield Zoo
DuPage Children's Museum
Kuiper's Family Farm
Sci-Tech Museum
Your neighborhood park
Naper Settelment
St. Charles Scarecrow Festival
Your local library
Kline Creek Farm