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Music Alumnus Named Lilly Graduate Fellow

Music Alumnus Named Lilly Graduate Fellow

Nathan Cornelius '12 earned his Bachelor of Music in applied performance for guitar, and his Master of Music in composition and guitar from the Lamont School of Music in Denver, Colorado.

The Lilly Fellows Program selected Nathan Cornelius ’12 as one of 10 Lilly Graduate Fellows for its eighth cohort. 

Cornelius graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Music degree in guitar performance. He went on to Lamont School of Music at the University of Denver in Colorado. This spring he graduated with a Master of Music degree with a dual concentration of composition and guitar performance. He is currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in guitar performance, concurrently with a Master of Music in music theory pedagogy, at the Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University. 

His performances and research focus on classical guitar music from the 20th century and how it reflects modern and postmodern cultural conceptions of time and memory. He also seeks to clearly express ideas and beliefs through music, engaging audiences in new ways, and extending his passion to other students of music. He plans to continue to compose for Nebula Ensemble, a chamber music group he founded in Colorado. 

The Lilly Graduate Fellows Program is a part of the Lilly Fellows Program in Humanities and the Arts that supports outstanding students who want to explore the connections among Christianity, higher education, and the vocation of the teacher-scholar as they pursue doctoral degrees in humanities and the arts. “One of the things I remember most from Bethel was how the faculty applied their faith to their subject matter as scholars and as persons,” says Cornelius. “They were great role models for me, and they fueled my passion, not just for the art of music, but also for the art of teaching. They also inspired me to not merely make ‘Christian art,’ but commit to making art out of the overflow of my Christian identity, and I want to share this passion with future generations of students.”

The Fellows will participate in long-distance colloquia, engage in one-on-one mentoring relationships, and participate in three conferences. All 10 are pursuing doctoral studies in humanities or the arts.

Cornelius is Bethel’s second Lilly Graduate Fellow; Yelena Bailey ’09 was a member of the Lilly Graduate Fellows third cohort.

Visit the Lilly Graduate Fellows Program website for more information.