For their love of music and community

November 20, 2013 | 5:58 p.m.

Students Joe Munson, Krin McMillen and Dan Sievert receive Bethel’s Performance Prize

Culture | Cherie Suonvieri

In a celebration of music, friends, family and faculty gathered in Benson Great Hall on Tuesday, Nov. 5 to listen to nine students perform musical compositions of the past and present. Bethel’s Performance Prize Competition series began in 1990 with the Bach Performance Prize, and has been held yearly since. This year’s recipients were Dan Sievert (trumpet), Krin McMillen (voice) and Joe Munson (piano).

Dan Sievert
Year: Freshman
Major: Music Education

Background:
“I started playing the piano in first grade. I am the youngest of my three siblings, so I followed in their footsteps. The trouble was that I didn't like practicing so I gave up the piano for the trumpet in sixth grade. The trumpet seemed like the instrument for me so I just stuck with it ever since.”

Involvement in music at Bethel:
I am in the Bethel Wind Symphony, the 10:20 Jazz ensemble, the 5:40 Jazz ensemble, the Bethel Chamber Orchestra, and I am also taking lessons”

Why he chose “Sonata for Trumpet and Piano” by Kent Kennan:
“The piece was actually picked out by my teacher Dr. Thompson.”

Why he makes music:
“I make music because I enjoy making music. It's something that has always been a part of my life and I can't imagine stopping."

On the value of music in community:
“Performing a piece is like giving all the hard work and dedication you've put into the piece to whoever might be listening. I think it is very beneficial to the performer because of the skills they learn. It is also beneficial to the audience because they get to support their community, and they get some entertainment out of the deal. I think it is all around a positive experience for everyone. Sharing music is sharing feelings; it's telling a story with all your friends to an audience. Have you ever tried to tell a story with five of your friends at the same time? That's sort of what it's like playing in a band. It takes a lot of cooperation and teamwork.”

Krin McMillen
Year: Junior
Major: Vocal Performance

Background:
“I have grown up around music my whole life. My mom and brother were both music education majors, and there was always music being played around the house. I was very involved in choir and professional theatre in the Twin Cities before coming to Bethel.”

Involvement at Bethel:
“I am in the Bethel Choir, I take voice lessons, piano lessons, and I am involved in the opera program.”

Why she chose “The Doll Song” by Jacques Offenbach:
“I chose to perform "The Doll Song" because it's a piece that showcases a coloratura voice well. There is extreme difficulty in the piece, as it features soaring high notes and fast malismas, which are things that I usually look for in an aria. I also love the character of Olympia (the mechanical doll) in the opera itself.”

Why she makes music:
“I love to make music because I believe it is something that God has called me to do with my life. I couldn't do any of it without Him- He is the reason that I sing. All the glory goes to Jesus Christ."

On the value of music in community:
"Music has the power to heal people and to move them, and sadly, it is usually one of the first things to be dropped in schools during times of economic struggle. Karl Paulnack said that 'Music is a basic need of human survival. Music is one of the ways we make sense of our lives, one of the ways in which we express feelings when we have no words, a way for us to understand things with our hearts when we can't with our minds.' I think that it was a huge mistake for Bethel to cut three music majors from its curriculum."

Joe Munson
Year: Senior
Major: Music - Applied Performance

Background:
“I started piano lessons at the age of eight. After a while, I questioned whether I was going to continue with it or not. Looking back, I am glad I did! I worked on classical music in high school and also played piano at my church. After this I decided to come to Bethel to pursue a music degree.”

Involvement in music at Bethel:
“I am so thankful for all the opportunities I've had to develop my musical gift here at Bethel. I've been involved in solo performing, male chorus, Bethel choir and United worship ministry.”

Why he chose “Prelude in B Minor, Op. 21, No. 10” by Sergei Rachmaninoff:
“I chose the piece because Rachmaninoff is one of my favorite composers. Few pieces have I played that have the same level of intensity as Rachmaninoff. The piece contains some very gentle parts and also some very dramatic parts, displaying the expressive capabilities of the piano."

Why he makes music:
“I make music because God gave me the gift. The least I could do to say thank you is to develop and foster that gift for Him.”

On the value of music in community:
“There is something powerful about sharing music in community. Recently, I was thinking of all the great memories I have in Benson, whether it was for Festival of Christmas, music hour or Vespers. All of these brought great joy to my life and allowed me to feel a part of the community. All those shared music events did everything from lifting up my head to bringing me to my knees. Music is very valuable to community because it brings people together and allows us to encourage one another.”

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