Members of the Guitar Ensemble study, perform, and record music for multiple guitars and bass from Renaissance through 20th-century composers, including American jazz and rock styles. Students learn improvisation, composition, and arranging techniques. The ensemble presents at least two performances each semester and participates in a recording session in a major recording studio. The Guitar Ensemble premiered a new music video in May 2015. The audio, an excerpt from Dave Brubeck's Blue Rondo a la Turk, was recorded at Creation Audio in Minneapolis.
Small Guitar Ensemble
This course is intended for the guitarist who is interested in the performance of music for guitar and other instruments. Typical combinations include bass, drums, keyboard, full band, and all other orchestral instruments. All styles and genres welcome. Students present a live performance at the end of each semester.
New Music Ensemble
This mixed instrumental group is devoted to the study and performance of new music. Repertoire may include non-tonal, neotonal, indeterminate, or experimental genres, collaborative improvisation, and original composition.
Members study and perform jazz in various styles with exposure to improvisation, and present formal and informal concerts on campus each semester.
Popular Music Ensemble
Student groups receive individual coaching for small ensembles on the performance of all genres and types of American popular music.
View the rehearsal schedule for all ensembles.
We teach, perform, and encourage all styles of music. We believe the guitar is the ultimate "crossover" instrument of the 20th and 21st centuries. Whether your tastes run to the electric or the ethnic, to the classic or to rock, UST Guitar Studies honors your choice and has a faculty member to serve your needs.
Ideally, yes. Specific styles most often times require different instruments -- i.e. classical and Brazilian on a nylon string guitar, jazz on an electric (although this one can go on all the guitars), folk on steel string, etc.
Yes, St. Thomas provides free loaner guitars to beginning students.
Yes, incoming guitar majors have the opportunity to audition for music scholarships. Current guitar majors may audition for scholarships during In-House Auditions (held in May). Guitar players may fulfill their Fine Arts Requirement FREE of charge by participating in Guitar Ensemble for four semesters (a tuition savings of over $4,600). Freshmen members of the Guitar Ensemble are also eligible for free 30-minute guitar lessons (a tuition savings of over $1,400).