La Verne Chamber Orchestra is Born!!

Announcing the advent of the La Verne Chamber Orchestra, our newest community ensemble located at the University of La Verne!

I first started this orchestra with the hope that it would bring people together to learn from each other and grow artistically. Every week we have been welcoming new members and it is exciting to meet new people. They in turn invite their friends and colleagues and it keeps growing.

Recent studies in the science of happiness point to the creation of such organizations as being very healthy for communities and individuals. In an article by the Huffington Post, there are several things that seem to occur when a person is in the state of happiness:

*Positive emotion
*Engagement or flow
*Meaning and purpose

Working in this orchestra, we encounter all of these on a regular basis. It is my purpose to create a positive, constructive, and comfortable environment in order for people to interact, work together, and learn from each other. So often ensembles can focus on only the execution of the music, not on the community of musicians. It is my goal to grow a quality ensemble where people can fully enjoy the artistic process in a community setting.

Recently, Campus Times did a very nice article about the orchestra:

Our first performance will be on November 9 at 7:30 pm in Morgan Auditorium at the University of La Verne in conjunction with a performance of piano and violin music with myself and my colleague Nicodemus Marucut.

The La Verne Chamber Orchestra is comprised of university students and community members. We welcome anyone from seasoned musicians and true beginners. We meet on Thursday nights from 4:30-5:50 in the Morgan Auditorium at the University of La Berne. If you are interested in joining, please call me, Dr. Danielle Rosaria Cummins at (909) 240-6416.


21st Century Group Music

Our music appreciation has completed an overview of music history from the Middle Ages to the present. In order to continue music in the 21st century, we did a class project that involved the entire musical creative process.


*took materials from nature (beans, rubber bands, class jars, voice, and our hands)

*built instruments from these materials that either had a vibrating wind column, a vibrating string, or something that was hit against something else

IMG_0918*named each kind of instrument

*had composers study the instruments and write rhythms for them

*created a score

IMG_0914*rehearsed the music

*performed the music!

I then took these sounds as material and worked with them, adding several violin parts, using the class’ music as the percussion track and brought the elements together with this video.

Creating this 21st century piece allowed students to experience first had many of the steps involved in creating a single musical work for large ensemble. We all understand music in unique yet also similar ways and its a wonderful experience when we are able to work with sound ourselves.