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Ensembles and Performance Areas


instrumental ensembles

Make music with the Herd.

School of Music students excel when they perform in a vast array of instrumental ensembles geared toward their area of expertise.


MUSC 04100

The Symphonic Wind Ensemble is the premiere instrumental ensemble at the Purdue Fort Wayne School of Music and is open to all students through audition. The ensemble performs the most advanced literature written for the wind band medium from the Renaissance to today.  Premieres of works by Pulitzer prize-winning William Bolcom, Omar Thomas, Viet Cuong, Andy Akiho, Ana Lara, Michael Markowski, Steven Bryant, as well as future works from Zhou Tian, Jennifer Jolley, and Pulitzer prize-winning Tonia León provide a glimpse into the literature the Symphonic Wind Ensemble performs throughout the year.

The ensemble made its Carnegie Hall debut in 2015, visited Europe in 2018, where the ensemble performed in numerous grand concert halls, including in the Konzerthaus in Vienna, Mozarteum in Salzburg, and Rudolfinum in Prague, where it performed Karel Husa’s Music for Prague 1968 on its fiftieth anniversary.  Other stops included Leipzig, Dresden, Bayreuth, České Budějovice, and Gera, Germany. 

In the spring of 2023, the Symphonic Wind Ensemble will be embarking on a tour of Asia. More information can be found by contacting Dr. Daniel Tembras at [email protected].

MUSC 04000 (University Instrumental Ensemble)

The Symphonic Band is made up of both majors and non-majors and is open to all non-majors without an audition. The Symphonic Band performs cornerstone works for bands and has worked with visiting artists, including, David Maslanka, John Mackey, Steven Bryant, Jennifer Jolley, Ricardo Lorenz, and Omar Thomas, amongst others. The ensemble meets Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 11-11:50 a.m. and is open to all woodwind, brass, percussionists, string bass, and pianists.

More information on joining the Symphonic Band can be found by contacting Dr. Daniel Tembras at [email protected].

Students and Directors, click to register


2023 Clinicians

Beth A. Fabrizio

Middle School Conductor

Beth Fabrizio

Beth A. Fabrizio holds a Bachelor of Music from the Eastman School of Music in Clarinet Performance and a Masters of Music in Conducting, Education and Performance from Ithaca College. She has studied conducting with Rodney Winther and Dr. Donald Hunsberger and Clarinet with Michael Webster, Richard Waller, Stanley Hasty, William Osseck, Carmine Campione and performed in master classes with Richard Stoltzman.
Ms. Fabrizio has conducted honor bands and presented master classes and clinics across the United States, Europe, Japan and Malaysia.  Beth has taught marching bands and drum and bugle corps throughout the United States and Asia. Ms. Fabrizio has been the brass caption head with The Carolina Crown Drum and Bugle Corps, brass coordinator with The Pride of Soka from Tokyo, Japan, brass staff with Boston Crusaders, The Glassmen and Spirit of Atlanta. Beth adjudicates for DCI, BOA, WGI and numerous other state associations. She has also been inducted in to Delta Kappa Gamma, Sigma Alpha Iota and Alpha Chi Omega. Ms. Fabrizio is honored to be the founder and charter member of the newly formed Chi chapter of Phi Beta Mu and was inducted in May of 2022.


Alfred Watkins

High School Conductor

Alfred Watkins

Alfred Watkins served as the Director of Bands at Lassiter High School in Marietta, Georgia for the majority of his storied thirty-seven year career. His bands performed four times at the Midwest Clinic, National Band Association Convention, National Concert Band Festival and GMEA. The Trojan Marching Band performed four times in the Tournament of Roses and three times in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The Trojan Band was named Sweepstakes Winners in 103 of 110 competitions entered, including being named the Bands of America Grand National Champions on two occasions.
Watkins is a member of the prestigious American Bandmasters Association. He holds the unique distinction of having led bands that received the John Philip Sousa Foundation’s Sudler Flag of Honor, Sudler Shield, and Sudler Silver Scroll Awards. Watkins is Co-founder, Musical Director and Conductor of the Cobb Wind Symphony, an award-winning all-adult community band based in Marietta.

The university’s Jazz Ensemble is made up of a rhythm section and a horn section. It is conducted by Terry Fisher, adjunct professor. Student musicians play everything from big-band music to jazz standards to jazz renditions of other popular music. The group presents four to six concerts a year. The ensemble comprises approximately 20 students who play either tenor, alto or baritone saxophone, clarinet, French horn, trumpet, trombone, bass trombone, piano, guitar, bass, and drums.

Often, advanced students are organized into combos to give them the opportunity to play pieces more suitable for smaller groups and composed by jazz greats, such as Benny Carter, Art Farmer, and Thelonious Monk.

For more information about the Jazz Ensemble, student jazz combos, or the jazz minor, contact Fisher at [email protected]

The orchestra offers performance opportunities, orchestral training, and experience for music majors, nonmusic majors, and community members. We welcome string, wind, brass, harp, piano, and percussion musicians from the campus and community.

For information or to schedule an audition, please contact Kevin McMahon, visiting assistant professor in orchestra, at [email protected].

Details coming soon!

 Come Sunday by Omar Thomas


Let My Love Be Heard by Jake Runestad

Let My Love be Heard by Jake Runestad

Small ensembles

Move forward together.

Our music students have the opportunity to learn and play with groups both booming and intimate.


The Purdue Fort Wayne Saxophone Choir is open to saxophonists of all ages, including Purdue Fort Wayne students, high school students, and adults. The group performs both original music for the saxophone and transcriptions of orchestral works. A recital is presented each semester on campus.


The Purdue Fort Wayne Saxophone Quartet can be heard in recital each semester on campus, as well as in the community presenting standard saxophone quartet repertoire, contemporary compositions, and holiday tunes.

The Purdue Fort Wayne Clarinet Ensemble is an instrumental ensemble consisting entirely of instruments from the clarinet family, including the Eb clarinet, Bb clarinet, alto clarinet, bass clarinet, contra alto clarinet, and contrabass clarinet. The group performs original works for the clarinet choir and arrangements representing a variety of styles and time periods.


To request more information or if you are interested in joining this ensemble, please send a message to Kylie

Stultz-Dessent, visiting instructor in clarinet and music, at [email protected].

The Purdue Fort Wayne Guitar Ensemble is a performing ensemble focused on classical guitar repertoire and technique. Students perform a wide array of musical styles, from classical masterworks to contemporary compositions, that are representative of musical traditions and cultures of the world.


The ensemble performs in duo, trio, and quartet combinations and often collaborates with other instrumentalists and vocalists. The ensemble can be heard regularly on campus and in numerous local and regional venues. Additionally, the group is a frequent participant at the annual Mid-America Guitar Ensemble Festival. It has been coached in master classes by internationally renowned masters Jason Vieaux, the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, Duo Melis, and the Canadian Guitar Quartet.


This primary ensemble is open to music majors, minors, and classical (nylon string) guitarists. Students may join the ensemble upon completing a successful audition.


The ensemble is directed by Laura Lydy, senior lecturer in music. For more information, contact her at [email protected].

The Chancellor’s Quartet centers on rehearsals and coaching in a string-quartet setting. The group sometimes expands to include an oboe, piano, or contrabass.

Choral ensembles

Let your voice be heard.

Collaborate with our exceptional choral ensembles: University Singers, Chamber Treble Singers, and Choral Union. 


The university’s auditioned mixed=choral ensemble, University Singers—under the direction of William Sauerland, director of choral studies and assistant professor—is a 1-credit course open to all students. The group performs works ranging from choral-orchestral masterworks to a cappella pieces to sacred and secular repertoire, representing a variety of styles, genres, historical periods, and cultures. Auditions are held every spring for the following academic year.


To set up an audition or to request more information, please contact Sauerland at [email protected].

Open to all students, Chamber Treble Singers is an auditioned ensemble, 1-credit course. Directed by William Sauerland, director of choral studies and assistant professor, the ensemble performs all styles of music, from Renaissance madrigals to folk songs to jazz to contemporary music. Auditions are held every spring for the following academic year.


To set up an audition or to request more information, please contact Sauerland at [email protected].

This group is so named because it is a union of students (who may take the course for 1 credit) and members of the local community (who love to sing and are not typically taking the course for credit). If you can’t fit a daytime choir into your schedule, this is the choir for you. The group is nonauditioned and strives for excellence in choral singing.


To find out more information about joining Choral Union, contact William Sauerland, director of choral studies and assistant professor, at [email protected].

The Purdue Fort Wayne Opera Ensemble offers students valuable performance opportunities and teaches the skills necessary to pursue operatic and musical performance in the profession.


Each semester, the class produces a program of opera scenes, a full-length opera, or a musical. Opera-workshop participants frequently benefit from master classes with guest artists, including bass Anthony Offerle, soprano Laura Pedersen, composer Dan Shore, and guest directors, such as Don Bernardini.


Course registration requires permission of the instructor. For more information contact Dr. William Sauerland at [email protected].

popular music ensembles

Create new sounds.

The exciting sounds made by these musicians changes whenever new students join each group, fueled by their most unique contributions.

Music Technology



A dynamic group of Purdue Fort Wayne popular music and music industry students, 3 Rivers Electric (3RE) showcases a wide array of popular musical styles.

In the spring of 2019, 3RE embarked on a five-day tour of the Midwest with American songwriter Ryan M. Brewer. In 2020, 3RE learned, arranged, and recorded original songs by alumna Sarah Case.

This ensemble is ever changing, based on the instrumentation of those involved. Whether you are a singer, guitarist, or audio engineer, there is a place for you in 3RE.

piano performance area

Make beautiful music.

The School of Music produces many of the best solo and collaborative piano performers in the region with an exceptional faculty to guide them on their journey.

Andrew Nesler

Piano faculty are active as performers, master-class presenters, lecturers, and adjudicators.

Many performance opportunities, including an annual concerto competition, studio recitals, and a variety of large and chamber ensembles. Special campus events have included the 50 Hands Monster Piano Concert and other concerts featuring multiple pianists in various combinations.

Frequent guest artist piano recitals and master classes. Recent guests include Antonio Pompa-Baldi, Alexander Korsantia, and Boris Slutsky. Ongoing collaboration with the Fort Wayne Philharmonic brings the orchestra’s guest soloists to campus for master classes.

Graduates are active as solo and collaborative performers, independent studio teachers, school teachers, music therapists, recording technicians, and church musicians. Piano performance graduates have been accepted at prestigious graduate programs in performance in schools, including the Cleveland Institute of Music, Manhattan School of Music, and the Peabody Institute.

For information about the piano program, please contact Hamilton Tescarollo, professor and director of keyboard studies, at [email protected].

Facilities include two performance halls equipped with nine-foot Steinways, piano studios and rehearsal halls with seven-foot Steinways, and designated practice rooms with grand pianos for piano primaries.

Opportunities for precollege pianists include the Gene Marcus Piano Competition (ages 18 and under) and the Gene Marcus Piano Camp and Festival (grades 7–12).