Strings Area


The CSU string area seeks to empower students with the knowledge, skills and experience needed for a successful career in music. One-on-one training with artist/scholars, chamber ensemble coaching sessions, rehearsals and concerts with the University Symphony and Sinfonia Orchestras promote the intellectual, creative and artistic growth of each student. We believe that total musicianship involves training the artists of the future to have a breadth of knowledge. Professional musicians today are performers, scholars, educators and active supporters of the cause of music. Our string program guides the aspiring musician towards the fulfillment of these goals.

Pedagogy = The Art of Teaching

Did you know there are currently extraordinary opportunities for a career combining performance and teaching? Let us prepare you for the high professional demands of this rewarding field. At Colorado State University, we emphasize the importance of performing AND teaching.

Focus on Private Studio Pedagogy

This track prepares you to teach violin, viola, or cello in a private studio setting or music school. The curriculum follows guidelines established by the American String Teachers Association and includes comprehensive training in methods developed by renowned pedagogues such as Robert Gillespie, Paul Rolland, and Phyllis Young. Our award-winning, internationally recognized faculty will observe and guide you as you gain valuable experience teaching beginning and intermediate students.


Study With

Ronald Francois

Coordinator of Strings Area
Associate Professor of Violin
Chamber Music

(970) 491-3160

Leslie Stewart

Special Assistant Professor of Violin
Director of Master of Music, Music Education Conducting Specialization
Chamber Music

(970) 219-5985

Margaret Miller

Special Assistant Professor of Viola
Coordinator of the Graduate String Quartet Program

(719) 660-0878

Barbara Thiem

Special Assistant Professor of Cello
Chamber Music

(970) 491-3276

Forest Greenough

Associate Professor of Double Bass
Music Theory

Strings Events

Pre-College Chamber Music Festival

March 23, 2018 - March 24, 2018 at 12:00 AM

Classical Convergence, Borromeo String Quartet (SOLD OUT)

March 23, 2018 at 7:30 PM
This event is SOLD OUT. Thank you for your interest! With Special Guest Joel Bacon, Organ The Borromeo String Quartet is joined by Organ Professor Dr. Joel Bacon for an extraordinary concert celebrating the 50th anniversary of Colorado State University’s renowned Casavant Organ. The visionary performances of the Borromeo String Quartet have established itself as [...]

Pre-College Chamber Music Festival Concert / FREE

March 24, 2018 at 3:00 PM
The region’s best high school string quartets from the pre-college program perform after two days of intense sessions with the acclaimed Borromeo String Quartet.

Student Recital: Samantha Boies, Trombone

March 24, 2018 at 5:30 PM

Student Recital: Javier Elizondo, Clarinet

March 24, 2018 at 7:30 PM

Guest Artist: Kemal Gekic, Piano / FREE

March 29, 2018 at 7:30 PM
Flamboyant, daring, provocative, exciting, seductive and sensitive are some of the words used to describe one of today's most formidable pianists, KEMAL GEKIC, whose playing has been acclaimed worldwide by public and critics alike. PROGRAM Scherzo, No. 1 in B-minor, Opus 20 / CHOPIN (1810-1849) Ballade No. 1 in G-minor, Opus 23 Nocturne in C-minor, Opus [...]

Virtuoso Series Concert, Stephen Dombrowski, Tuba

April 2, 2018 at 7:30 PM
CSU faculty artist Stephen Dombrowski is joined by three Colorado Symphony Orchestra colleagues for a recital of solo pieces for tuba and works for low brass ensemble. Musicians include John Sipher, principal trombone; Paul Naslund, 2nd trombone; and Greg Harper, bass trombone.

Student Recital: Hayden Holbrook, Saxophone

April 3, 2018 at 7:30 PM

Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute) by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

April 4, 2018 at 7:30 PM
Directed by John Carlo Pierce, Conducted by Wes Kenney Ticketed Performances: April 4, 6, 7:30 p.m., and April 8, 2 p.m. Free performance for elementary and middle schools (45 minutes): April 5 10 a.m. Die Zauberflöte was a great success at its premiere in 1791 and has never left the repertoire of the world's operatic [...]

Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute) by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

April 6, 2018 at 7:30 PM
Directed by John Carlo Pierce, Conducted by Wes Kenney Ticketed Performances: April 4, 6, 7:30 p.m., and April 8, 2 p.m. Free performance for elementary and middle schools (45 minutes): April 5 10 a.m. Die Zauberflöte was a great success at its premiere in 1791 and has never left the repertoire of the world's operatic [...]

MSOE Musical Carnival 2018

April 7, 2018 at 8:00 AM
Registration will begin at 8 a.m., Workshops will be from 9 a.m.-12 p.m., and there will be an optional concert from 12:15-1 p.m. The Musical Carnival is a completely free event for middle school aged students involved in music. Music education students from CSU create and teach fun and creative workshops to inspire and expand [...]

Student Recital: MacKenzie Beeler, Horn

April 7, 2018 at 4:30 PM

Student Recital: Sarah Chicoine, Viola

April 7, 2018 at 6:30 PM

Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute) by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

April 8, 2018 at 2:00 PM
Directed by John Carlo Pierce, Conducted by Wes Kenney Ticketed Performances: April 4, 6, 7:30 p.m., and April 8, 2 p.m. Free 45 minute performance for elementary and middle schools: April 5 10 a.m. Die Zauberflöte was a great success at its premiere in 1791 and has never left the repertoire of the world's operatic [...]

Student Recital: Rawan Jarrar, Violin

April 8, 2018 at 8:30 PM

Virtuoso Series Concert, Faculty Chamber Music

April 9, 2018 at 7:30 PM
The popular faculty recital program includes George Onslow’s String Quintet No.26 in G minor, Op.67 performed by CSU faculty artists Ron Francois, violin; Leslie Stewart, violin; Margaret Miller, viola; Barbara Thiem, cello; and Forest Greenough, double bass. Maestro Wes Kenney also conducts an ensemble of faculty and graduate students on Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring.

Music in the Museum Concert Series / FREE

April 10, 2018 at 12:00 AM
NOTE: Reservations are available online only at; reservations are not available by phone or email. Thank you! Performances at noon and 6 p.m. The Gregory Allicar Museum of Art presents this series exploring the cross-fertilization between music and the visual arts, with performances by CSU Music faculty and brief historic background given by faculty from the Department [...]

Student Recital: Rebecca Stapfer, Clarinet

April 10, 2018 at 5:00 PM

Jazz Ensembles Concert w/Fossil Ridge HS

April 10, 2018 at 7:30 PM
With Fossil Ridge High School Jazz Band CSU Jazz Ensembles I and II are joined by Fossil Ridge High School's Jazz Ensemble, directed by Dan Berard, for the annual High School Invitational Concert. All groups feature outstanding student performers and improvisers playing exciting and swinging arrangements for the last big band concert of the year!

Student Recital: Kaitlin Gelsinger, Clarinet

April 11, 2018 at 6:30 PM

Student Recital: Anthony Aguayo, Clarinet

April 11, 2018 at 8:30 PM

Student Chamber Music Showcase / FREE

April 12, 2018 at 6:00 PM
Selected chamber music groups from all areas perform on this special program.

University Chorus, Mainstreet Acapella, Mountain Horns Concert

April 12, 2018 at 7:30 PM
Shine! Join the University Chorus, conducted by Nathan Payant, as they explore songs that enliven the heart and inspire us to trust that there is still light, even in difficult times. The performance includes works by J.S. Bach, Daniel Elder, Jake Runestad, Samuel Barber, Kevin Padworski, and many more. In addition, the ensemble is joined [...]

Student Recital: Luke Thatcher, Voice

April 13, 2018 at 5:00 PM

Student Recital: Zhuoer Gu, Piano

April 13, 2018 at 7:00 PM

Jazz Combos Concert

April 13, 2018 at 7:30 PM
The spring jazz combo concert highlights student compositions and arrangements. “It's always fun to see what the students come up with and help them discover their process,” said Combos Director Shilo Stroman.

Student Recital: Liz Xia, Piano

April 13, 2018 at 9:00 PM

Percussion Ensemble Festival

April 14, 2018 at 12:00 AM
The sixth annual festival features several Colorado high school ensembles, esteemed guest percussionist Eric Willie, and the CSU Percussion Ensemble. Guest clinicians work with high school ensembles in master classes and clinics, followed by an evening concert. Registration for the daytime event is free, but required.

Student Recital: William Gamache, Trombone

April 14, 2018 at 3:30 PM

*CANCELLED: Percussion Ensemble Festival Concert / FREE

April 14, 2018 at 6:00 PM
**This event has been CANCELLED, and will not be rescheduled. We apologize for the inconvenience.** With Guest Eric Willie, Percussion This traditional percussion concert caps off the sixth annual festival of high school percussion ensembles. Featuring special guest Eric Willie, this will be a high energy presentation of contemporary percussion music. Described as a "true musical [...]

Student Recital: Jacob Kilford, Saxophone

April 14, 2018 at 6:00 PM

Student Recital: Keilani McConnell, Flute

April 14, 2018 at 7:30 PM

Oboe Studio Recital / FREE

April 15, 2018 at 7:30 PM
Oboe students of Andrew Jacobson perform a variety of pieces from the standard repertoire for oboe.

Wind Symphony Concert: State of Imagination

April 16, 2018 at 7:30 PM
With Guests Madeline Harvey, Dance; Tim Burns, Piano; James David, Composer; Dan Goble, Saxophone; Peter Sommer, Saxophone; and Wil Swindler, Saxophone The 2017-2018 Wind Symphony season highlights CSU’s commitment to collaboration, community, innovation, and inspiration. All of these ideals clearly connect to music, and the ensemble, conducted by Rebecca Phillips and guest graduate conductor Kevin [...]

Classical Convergence, Anthony de Mare: Liaisons

April 17, 2018 at 7:30 PM
Re-Imagining Sondheim from the Piano Liaisons is a landmark commissioning and concert project, conceived by acclaimed concert pianist Anthony de Mare, based on the songs of legendary musical theater composer Stephen Sondheim. The project has brought together 36 of the world’s foremost contemporary composers to "re-imagine" one of Sondheim’s songs as a solo piano piece. [...]

Student Recital: Andrew MacRossie, Saxophone

April 18, 2018 at 5:00 PM

Student Recital: Connor Challey, Tuba

April 18, 2018 at 7:00 PM

Graduate String Trio Recital

April 18, 2018 at 7:30 PM
Join students Ryan Foley, violin; Norma Parrott, cello; and Sicong Zhou, piano, for a program of works for piano trio.

Guest Artist: You-Seong Kim, Voice / FREE

April 19, 2018 at 7:30 PM
Dr. Kim serves as head of North Park University’s voice department and director of the vocal performance master’s program. Dr. Kim believes that music changes lives, and aims to graduate not only music makers, but also music lovers.

Student Recital: Frangel Lopez-Cesena, Violin

April 20, 2018 at 5:30 PM

Student Recital: Joseph Hoffarth, Sax & Bassoon

April 20, 2018 at 6:00 PM

Student Recital: Dominic Aragon, Voice

April 20, 2018 at 7:30 PM

Student Recital: Jake Schick, Organ

April 20, 2018 at 9:00 PM

Student Recital: Emma Stark, Flute

April 21, 2018 at 3:00 PM

Student Recital: Jonathon Wilson, Voice

April 21, 2018 at 5:00 PM

Guest Artist: Vincent Warnier, Organ

April 21, 2018 at 7:30 PM
50th Anniversary of the Casavant Organ at CSU Colorado State University’s Casavant Frères Organ was designed and voiced specifically for the university by Lawrence I. Phelps, in consultation with former CSU organ professor Robert Cavarra. Installed in 1968 in the previous music building on the Oval, it is one of the first modern mechanical-action (tracker) [...]

Student Recital: Chris Nadeau, Percussion

April 22, 2018 at 5:30 PM

Student Recital: Joe Jones, Percussion

April 22, 2018 at 8:00 PM

All Choral Concert

April 24, 2018 at 7:30 PM
All three major choral ensembles at CSU – Chamber Choir, Concert Choir, and University Chorus – perform on this final choir concert of the year. Graduate students Chelsea Kendall and Jun Terasawa present their favorite choral gems, showcasing the talents of the singers in Chamber Choir and Concert Choir, and Nathan Payant finishes his first [...]

Trombone Studio Recital / FREE

April 24, 2018 at 7:30 PM
The members of Dr. Terry Leahy’s trombone studio present a recital with a variety of solos and chamber ensembles.

Woodwind Area Recital / FREE

April 25, 2018 at 7:30 PM
A recital presented by woodwind students from the studios of Dr. Wesley Ferreira, Professor Andrew Jacobson, Dr. Gary Moody, Dr. Michele Stanley, and Professor Peter Sommer features classic and modern literature for chamber groups and soloists.

Graduate String Quartet Recital

April 26, 2018 at 7:30 PM
Join Frangel Cesena, violin; Jose Trulillo, violin; Rosa Cole Avenado, viola; and Julius Hochmuth, cello, for a program of master works for string quartet. “I admire the enthusiasm and passion these students bring to learning and performing great works from the chamber music repertoire,” said Margaret Miller, graduate string quartet coordinator.

Student Recital: Matthew Chanlynn, Trumpet

April 27, 2018 at 7:00 PM

Dalcroze Workshop: Dare to Dabble with Dalcroze Eurhythmics

April 28, 2018 at 8:30 AM
Swiss music educator Emile Jaques-Dalcroze (1865-1950) believed in movement as our “sixth sense.” This workshop introduces participants to Dalcroze Eurhythmics, where, through movement, sound is experienced in an entirely new way. The workshop is designed for K-12 music teachers, applied music instructors, anyone who teaches or performs music, and is a sample of content for [...]

Student Recital: Theresa Bunger, Flute

April 28, 2018 at 3:00 PM

Student Recital: Courtney Pham, Flute

April 28, 2018 at 5:00 PM

New Music Ensemble Concert

April 28, 2018 at 7:30 PM
It Could Be Anything What happens when CSU’s new music ensemble members combine their energy, talent, and vision? It Could Be Anything! Under the direction of Andrew Jacobson, the group showcases growth and change in music by focusing on trends in the global arts world.

Freshman Voice Studio Recital / FREE

April 29, 2018 at 2:00 PM
A recital featuring students from CSU’s voice studios, including the Freshman Voice Studio.

World Percussion Concert

April 29, 2018 at 4:00 PM
This concert features CSU’s three steel bands, the Ragtime Marimba Band, and the Civil War Rope Drum Ensemble. “This concert is always fun with wide range of musical styles,” said Eric Hollenbeck, percussion area coordinator.

Concert Orchestra and Concert Band Concert #2 / FREE

April 29, 2018 at 7:30 PM
With Guest Gary Moody, Bassoon The Concert Orchestra performs The Czech Connection, conducted by Leslie Stewart. The program opens with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s first symphony, written when he was only eight years old. Although he travelled as a child prodigy, Mozart didn’t go to Prague until a few years before his untimely death in 1791. [...]

Guest Artist: Alex Iles, Trombone / FREE

April 30, 2018 at 5:00 PM
The American trombonist teaches at the California Institute of the Arts and California State University, Northridge. He has toured as lead and solo jazz trombonist with the Woody Herman and Maynard Ferguson big bands, and performs and records as a regular member of many of the top big bands and jazz groups in the L.A. [...]

Violin Studio Recitals / FREE

April 30, 2018 at 5:00 PM
Violin students of Dr. Ron Francois perform a variety of pieces from the standard repertoire. “This event provides a great performing experience for the students...a great learning experience too,” exclaims Francois!

Virtuoso Series Concert, Michelle Stanley, Flute

April 30, 2018 at 7:30 PM
With Guest Jeff LaQuatra, Guitar Performed by CSU faculty artists Michelle Stanley, joined by Jeff LaQuatra, the recital creates two firsts: music from the flutist’s latest album Nouvelle Vie, and the world premiere of a newly commissioned work for flute and guitar by Bryan Johanson and James McGuire. The new album, released by Navona Records, [...]

Violin Studio Recitals / FREE

May 1, 2018 at 5:00 PM
Violin students of Dr. Ron Francois perform a variety of pieces from the standard repertoire. “This event provides a great performing experience for the students...a great learning experience too,” exclaims Francois!

Symphonic Band Concert 2

May 1, 2018 at 7:30 PM
The Symphonic Band, conducted by Richard Frey, presents music of both traditional and contemporary genres.

Brass Area Recital / FREE

May 2, 2018 at 7:30 PM
A recital presented by brass area students from the studios of Dr. John McGuire, Professor Caleb Hudson, and Professor Stephen Dombrowski features repertoire for chamber groups and soloists.

Farewell Recital: Dr. John Seesholtz / FREE

May 3, 2018 at 6:00 PM
After 6 wonderful years at Colorado State University, John Seesholtz bids farewell with this performance. For the concert, he is singing with both current and former students, showcasing over half a decade of successes at CSU. The students joining him are Marissa Rudd, Noel Von Behren, Pablo Romero, Ryan McPeek, Miranda Bashore, and Sarah Sanborn. [...]

University Symphony Orchestra Concert: A Last Dance

May 3, 2018 at 7:30 PM
With Guest Tiffany Blake, Soprano The University Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Wes Kenney, plays two dance inspired works: Edvard Grieg’s Symphonic Dances and Igor Stravinsky's iconic Le Sacre du Printemps (The Rite of Spring). Stravinsky's ballet score is famous for the riot that ensued at the premiere. The work for a gigantic orchestra – including woodwinds [...]

Student Recital: Christian Gibbs, Voice

May 4, 2018 at 5:00 PM

Student Recital: Anyaleen Bradley, Voice

May 4, 2018 at 7:00 PM

University Symphony Orchestra Concert: A Last Dance

May 4, 2018 at 7:30 PM
With Guest Tiffany Blake, Soprano The University Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Wes Kenney, plays two dance inspired works: Edvard Grieg’s Symphonic Dances and Igor Stravinsky's iconic Le Sacre du Printemps (The Rite of Spring). Stravinsky's ballet score is famous for the riot that ensued at the premiere. The work for a gigantic orchestra – including woodwinds [...]

Student Recital: Kadi Horn, Viola

May 5, 2018 at 5:30 PM

Student Recital: Sarah Sujansky, Clarinet

May 5, 2018 at 7:30 PM

Student Recital: Dmitri Ascarrunz, Violin

May 5, 2018 at 9:00 PM

Student Recital: Ian Maxwell, Percussion

May 6, 2018 at 3:30 PM

Student Recital: Malia Odekirk, Percussion

May 6, 2018 at 5:30 PM

Student Recital: Mariah Thompson, Clarinet

May 6, 2018 at 8:00 PM

Organ Week

June 3, 2018 - June 7, 2018 at 12:00 AM
Organ Week is designed for high school students interested in expanding (or beginning) their organ study. Led by a faculty of prominent concert and church organists, the program features one-to-one instruction, masterclasses, and recitals on the finest pipe organs in northern Colorado, including CSU’s Casavant organ.

Pre College Percussion Camp

June 7, 2018 - June 8, 2018 at 12:00 AM
The Pre-College Percussion Camp includes instruction on how to prepare and audition successfully toward acceptance as a collegiate music major. The workshop focuses on the four primary percussion instruments: Mallets (2 and 4 mallet), Timpani, Snare Drum, and Drum Set, as well as insight on applications, scholarships, equipment, and student skills.

LIFT Clarinet Academy

June 11, 2018 - June 15, 2018 at 12:00 AM
The Lift Clarinet Academy is an annual summer clarinet camp hosted annually by Clarinet Professor Dr Wesley Ferreira at Colorado State University. Each participant receives his/her own practice room to support daily lessons and performance coachings. Multiple group sessions and clinics cover a variety of topics from the fundamental to the progressive. Our goal is clear: to give each participant a tailored program with personalized instruction. The academy program also includes activities such as topic and performance masterclasses, participant chamber music performances, and a faculty recital as well as social gatherings that allow students and faculty to mingle and take in some of beautiful Colorado.

Jr. LIFT Clarinet Academy

June 18, 2018 - June 22, 2018 at 12:00 AM
The Junior Lift Clarinet Academy is an action-packed five day journey, designed for students ages 13-18 who seek to expand their clarinet study within a supportive and engaging musical environment.

Guest Artist: Michael Grill, Organ

September 4, 2018 at 7:30 PM
Michael Grill is director of music at the Erlöserkirche (Our Saviour’s Lutheran) in Munich, Germany. Frequently featured on German radio and television, the recitalist has played throughout Europe, Israel, South America, and the U.S. He founded the concert series "Neue Orgelmusik München,” dedicated to contemporary organ works, as well as "Fürstenrieder Bachtage,” a festival devoted [...]

Casavant Organ 50th Anniversary Concert: Joel Bacon Solo Recital

October 15, 2018 at 7:30 PM
On the final concert of the 50th Anniversary of the Casavant Organ, CSU’s Professor of Organ Joel Bacon performs selected pieces from the organ’s 1968 opening concert program. “CSU’s Casavant organ is a remarkable instrument – a great point of pride for the university and the community, and a joy for me personally to play [...]

Strings News

It’s Leslie Stewart Day!


Whereas Professor Leslie Stewart had been the original Music Director and conductor of the Health and Wellness Community Orchestra of Fort Collins for the last 10 years and Whereas she had nurtured and created an atmosphere of life long learning, love and improved mental and physical health in the playing of Classical orchestral music for […]

Borromeo String Quartet pictured on a bridge

A Way of Playing with The Borromeo String Quartet


For 11 years, Borromeo has been in residency at Colorado State University and captivating its audiences with their contemporary take on classical music. “Only a few groups in the world can do what the Borromeo achieve; it’s an honor to be a part of that experience here at CSU,” said Ron Francois, coordinator of strings […]

Strings Blog

Our Vietnam Experience, Entry #10

  Director of Orchestras Wes Kenney and Violin Professor Leslie Stewart are spending ten days over break in Vietnam with the Vietnam National Symphony Orchestra and at the National Music Academy. These entries document their unique and exciting experience! January 5, 2018 Concert Day. We leave the hotel at 8 a.m. for a 9 a.m. rehearsal. […]

Graduate String Quartet Program


Prerequisites for Admission: Bachelor’s Degree in Music, variety of solo and chamber music repertoire.


  • Assistance in developing artistic and business-related aspects for a successful quartet career
  • Participation in LEAP courses is encouraged
  • Seminar Topics Include:
    • Outreach Program Development
    • Creative Programming
    • Commissioning New Works
    • Arts Leadership & Administration
    • Chamber Music literature/Pedagogy
    • Supervised Coaching Experience

Students will be Involved in the Following:

  • Daily Rehearsal Time
  • Dedicated ensemble rehearsal space in our new state-of-the-art teaching and performance facility
  • Weekly Coaching

Additional Professional Work Available:

  • Opportunities with four professional symphonies in Northern Colorado
  • Teaching Opportunities
  • Chamber Music Performances

For more information, please contact Margaret Miller.

Guest Artists


Alexander String QuartetSan Francisco State University


Cavani String Quartet, Cleveland Institute of Music;


Hugo Wolf String Quartett, Vienna;


Boris Garlitsky. Paris Conservatoire, Concertmaster of London Philharmonic


Break of Reality, cello rock,

Turtle Island,

Lysander Trio,

Minguet Quartet,

Annual Guest

Borromeo String Quartet,


Studio Overview

The CSU violin studios comprise a wide variety of students from diverse musical and cultural backgrounds.

As students of music, the focus of concentration is on the various degrees we offer, namely, the Undergraduate degrees of Bachelor of Arts, Music Therapy, Music Education, Composition, and Performance, and Graduate degrees in Performance, Education, Music Therapy, and Conducting.

Many of our violin students hail from the great state of Colo., while a good number come from states such as Md., Calif., and Wyo. Our numerous international students add to the diversity within the violin studio; students from Mexico, Korea, and China have made significant contributions to our rich musical environment.

In addition to weekly violin lessons and studio classes, violin students gain valuable experience by performing in chamber music groups such as string quartets, and mixed chamber ensembles. Participation in larger ensembles such as the University Symphony Orchestra, Sinfonia Chamber Orchestra, and Opera Orchestra adds to this wide range of activities. Master-classes by visiting professional guest artist are also a regular feature of our program.

Our students are dedicated and passionate about the violin and committed to being the best musicians they can be, proudly producing many finalists in the annual concerto competition!

 As senior member of the violin faculty, and head of the string division, Dr. Ron Francois teaches most of the violin students at CSU (by audition only), and Ms. Leslie Stewart, coordinator of the string pedagogy program, also teaches our growing body of violin students.

With this team of dedicated violin teachers, great degree programs, and a world class facility, CSU is a great place to study for a successful career in music.

Alumni and Student News

To submit your good news, click here.

  • Francisco Barradas Galvan (M.M. '14) Mr. Galvan's studies at CSU were funded by the 'Fulbright' Garcia Robles program and he completed his studies with distinction. Having lead one of CSU's graduate string quartets, Mr. Galvan has been granted admission to the D.M.A. program at the University of Western Ontario, Canada where he will study violin performance on a full scholarship.
  • Adrian Barrera Ramos (M.M.) On a Mexican study grant, Mr. Ramos took a prize in the CSU concerto competition in Spring 2014. As first violinist in the Graduate String Quartet, Mr. Ramos is already in demand as a soloist in Mexico with several invitations to perform. He will complete his MM in the spring of '15
  • Hannah Barnes (B.M. '12) Ms. Barnes held the post of Concertmaster for the CSU Symphony orchestra for three years. She also took a prize in the CSU concerto competition and is now a professional freelancer with several Colorado Symphony orchestras.
  • Patrick Weseman (B.M. '11) Patrick's flair for human relations has guided him into the new LEAP Master program offered at CSU. This “Leadership-Entrepreneurship-Arts Advocacy and the Public" degree expands on his experience as a musician, giving him the perfect background for this new exciting career.
  • Wyatt True (M.M. ' 10) Mr. True lead one of CSU's graduate string quartets and has recently completed his DMA at the University of Oregon.
  • Chris Jusell (B.M. '08) Mr. Jusell won the CSU concerto competition in 2008 and went on to earn the concertmaster position with the Greeley Philharmonic Orchestra.
  • Jesse Maurer (B.M. Ed, '07) Since graduating, Mr. Maurer has been working as music educator in the Widefield school district in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Guest Artists


Fabián López, University of North Carolina

Arkady Fomin, Dallas Symphony Orchestra

Elizabeth Pitcairn, The Red Violin;


Boris Garlitsky, Paris Conservatoire, Concertmaster of London Philharmonic; website

Claude Sim, Colorado Symphony Orchestra;


Michael Davis, Concertmaster, Louisville Symphony;

Alessandro Cervo,


Jeri Jorgensen, Colorado College

William Knuth, Duo Sonidos;


Annual Guests

Nicholas Kitchen, Borromeo String Quartet;

Kristopher Tong, Borromeo String Quartet;


Studio Overview

At Colorado State University, the members of the viola studio have a wide variety of backgrounds and share a commitment to the highest level of viola playing. Students have come to CSU from across the country to study for one of the many degrees offered by the at both the undergraduate and graduate level: performance, education, therapy and Bachelor of Arts.

In addition to weekly lessons and studio class, violists at CSU have many performance opportunities, including the University Symphony Orchestra, University Sinfonia (which also plays opera performances), as well as chamber music for both strings and mixed ensembles. The repertoire for all ensembles is on the stands of the top orchestras and chamber music groups in the country.  There are also performances and master classes by guest artists, including the Borromeo Quartet from the New England Conservatory, which is in residence at CSU twice a year. 

The University Center for the Arts offers outstanding performance spaces and practice rooms.  There are more than 100 music events every semester, as well as theatre and dance.

Our goal at CSU is to provide the best teaching and performing experiences so that students are ready for a successful musical career. The viola studio invites you to visit!

Alumni News

To submit your good news, click here.

  • Chue Vue (B.A. and B.M., Performance '10), received his Masters in Performance at Arizona State University
  • Sabrina Romney (M.M., Performance '12), is living in Boulder, CO and is a member of the Fort Collins Symphony, the Greeley Philharmonic and the Cheyenne Symphony
  • Chealsea Bernhardt (M.M., Performance '14) is a member of the Fort Collins Chamber Music Society and is teaching privately in Fort Collins.
  • Christian Huang (B.M. in Performance and Education) is the new orchestra director at Skyline High School in the St. Vrain Valley School District, Colo.

Guest Artists


Amadi Hummings, Old Dominion University;

Larry Wheeler, University of Houston


Basil Vendryes, Lamont School of Music;

Christine Rutledge, University of Iowa School of Music

Annual Guests

Mai Motobuchi, Borromeo String Quartet;


Studio Overview

Cello studies at Colorado State University support the full range of undergraduate and graduate degrees. Our students not only participate in orchestra, but also play chamber music regularly. Most of the cello students choose to take our series of cello pedagogy classes, as well as cello literature.

Special features include the possibility of choosing a performance option for those students who are not in the performance degree, but are serious about their cello studies. We meet once a week for cello studio class and make a point of introducing our new students to the routine with a mentor program and numerous ways to connect socially.

“The cello studio at CSU is like a hodge podge family! We play for each other every week, and we all discuss, praise, and critique our performances afterwards. The first studio performances are always nerve wracking, but the camaraderie between us all makes it a comfortable and constructive environment. We have a Facebook page where we share music and ideas! All the cello [students] are very supportive and fun...I wouldn't want to play any other instrument at CSU!"

Guest Artists


Regina Mushabac, Baldwin Wallace University


Dennis Parker,

Michael Haber


Pablo Mahve-Veglia, Grand Valley State University;

Adriana Contino, Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, the College Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati, and Anderson University


Bruce Uchimura, Western Michigan University, The Merling Trio;

Annual Guest

Yeesun Kim, Borromeo String Quartet;

Double Bass

Studio Overview

The double bass studio at Colorado State University is made up of a diverse group of undergraduate and graduate students from Colo., the United States, and abroad. Double bass students represent every music major CSU offers, with many being double majors in areas such as engineering and various sciences as well. Additionally, many CSU bassists have been music minors or non-majors who have gone on to perform professionally in various capacities with music as a “second” career.

Double bassists at CSU are trained in a wide variety of performance styles, as bassists have the unique opportunity to work professionally in more genres than any other instrument. While all students receive rigorous classical training, each student is encouraged to pursue other musical styles, especially jazz. Students have the opportunity to perform in a number of CSU ensembles, including symphony, chamber orchestra, opera orchestra, wind ensemble, symphonic band, jazz big bands, and jazz combos. Many students also take advantage of performing in the flourishing Northern Colo. music scene, from jazz and classical to Ska and Bluegrass.

The mantra of the double bass studio is simply “work hard and have a great attitude!” We are a tight group working in a family atmosphere who pushes each other to improve each and every day, and are proud of the tradition of bass excellence at CSU—recently, many bassists have won CSU awards for academic and performance excellence!

Teaching Philosophy

As a diverse and exceptionally busy professional himself, Dr. Greenough believes in teaching students a diverse skillset that will allow them to take advantage of many different opportunities as a professional. Whether your goals are more specific or more general, to be a working professional in today’s market, a bassist must be able to play a wide range of styles at a high level. Even if you are primarily a classical performer, having the understanding of many styles not only improves your musicianship, but will allow you to pursue more performance opportunities as a professional. It is Dr. Greenough’s goal to develop students into functional professionals who have the skills necessary to work in today’s ever-changing music market.

First and foremost, Dr. Greenough is dedicated to helping each student develop the best physical relationship with his or her instrument possible. Instrument and physical setup issues are very unique to the double bass due to the many variables in size and shape for both the instrument and the player. Developing the most physically advantageous and ergonomic relationship with your instrument is not only important for musicianship, but also for long term physical health. Additionally, Dr. Greenough works with students to build comprehensive shoulder and core strength to prevent injury with an exercise plan developed in conjunction with the region’s leading sports rehabilitation therapists.

Dr. Greenough believes in the uniqueness of each and every student—everyone naturally has different strengths and challenges. While each student progresses through standard repertoire including solo music, orchestral excerpts, etc., the curriculum for each student is adapted to address the most needed areas first. For all students, emphasis is placed on developing strong intonation habits (through use of drone practice, scales, etc.) and developing a consistent practice routine to build stamina and dexterity. Students study from all areas of historic and modern double bass technique, from Simandl to Rabbath—while every player needs to be able to execute passagework and play musically, one student may have a better aptitude for pivot fingerings, while another may be more naturally equipped for finger extensions, for example.

Finally, above all is the consistent focus on creating music, with the understanding that everything we do is in service to music as an art. We are not merely learning to play the double bass, we are learning to create music of the highest artistic caliber.  Dr. Greenough will help you to develop your unique musical voice, with the ability to make solid musical and phrasing decisions based on the history and structure of what you are performing—playing with a nice sound is one aspect, but truly performing from a musically informed perspective is another.

Alumni News

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  • William Cubin (B.M. ’10): Willy is an active blues bassist, and teaches music at Ferguson High School in Loveland, Colo.
  • David Saccardi (B.M. ‘11): David is principal bass of the Cheyenne Symphony, assistant principal of the Greeley Philharmonic, and a section member of the Fort Collins Symphony. David is also the Director of Orchestras at Loveland High School in Loveland, Colo., as is an active clinician.
  • Jason Rosenholtz-Witt (M.M. ’11): Jason is currently pursuing his Ph.D in musicology at the prestigious Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University. Prior to leaving Colo., Jason was assistant principal bass of the Cheyenne Symphony, section bassist in the Fort Collins Symphony, and a very active freelance performer. He also was one of the most sought after private bass teachers in the region.
  • Zach Schwartz (B.A. ’12): Zach is currently in medical school following his dream of being a physician.
  • Brandon Katz (B.M. ’10, MM ’12): Brandon is an active performer and teaches many different instruments privately. He is currently the music teacher at Timberline PK-8 in Longmont, Colo.
  • Daniel Smith (M.M. ’13): Daniel is an active freelance jazz, classical, and electric bassist throughout Colorado. He is orchestra director at Lucile Erwin Middle School in Loveland, Colo.
  • Kenny Jones (MM ’13): Kenny is a busy freelance classical, jazz, and bluegrass performer and recording artist in the region.  He also teaches many young bassists in Northern Colo., and is active in the Dalcroze movement.
  • Erik Deines (B.M. ’15): Erik is currently a double major in performance and physics and won a section position in the Greeley Philharmonic at the end of his junior year.
  • Zach Bush (B.M. ’15): Zach is a junior double major in performance and education, and recently won a section position in the Cheyenne Symphony, and has attended the Marrowstone Music Festival.
  • Drew Miller (B.M. ’15): Drew is a junior double major in performance and electrical engineering. Drew freelances professionally and has attended the Marrowstone Music Festival.



Studio Overview

Colorado State University’s harp area helps students prepare for well-rounded professional careers as performers and/or teachers of chamber, orchestral, and solo repertory.

Undergraduate and graduate harp students receive thorough instruction in harp technique and repertoire, and experience in performance.


Professor Courtney Hershey Bress is continuously involved in the instruction, coaching, and performance of solo and orchestral repertory and chamber music. All harp performance majors will have one hour private lessons and will participate in studio class every week.  They will also participate in the ensembles at the school, University Symphony Orchestra, Opera Orchestra, Wind Symphony, Symphonic Band, and Concert Band.

Colorado State harp students have access to hearing many concerts each year, performed by students, faculty, and visiting artists.