My favorite place on campus is wherever our students are performing. I'm fortunate to direct groups in both the magnificent Moss Arts Center and Lane Stadium. The Moss Arts Center is a world-class acoustical space where our students grow as comprehensive musicians. Their ability to hear themselves more clearly and respond accordingly to the sounds around them has raised their performance level dramatically.
Playing in Lane Stadium is still a thrill! Keeping the Hokie Nation pumped up and supporting the football team - win or lose - is great fun. The Marching Virginians are truly "The Spirit of Tech" and having the opportunity to lead this fabulous group of student-musicians is a dream job!
Over my career, we've also had the opportunity to showcase the MVs in bowl games and NFL stadium across the country, including the Sugar Bowl, the Orange Bowl, and more Gator Bowls than I ever thought possible. Watching the eyes of our students light up is truly magical, whether on the concert stage or on the football field!
There really isn't one moment in and of itself - it is the complete process, beginning with the first step onto the rehearsal field or the first note in the rehearsal room, and ending with the final step or the release of the final chord at the end of the football season or concert performance.
I love watching our students go through the process, experiencing the highs and lows of learning the notes, cleaning the steps, and mastering every element of the performance. If our goal is to touch the listener, every step along the way helps the performers reach that goal together.
As an ensemble director, my job is lead the student-musicians toward the most effective performance possible. That's the most satisfying moment for me!