When the music department chairs were deciding who would perform at CSUâ€™s first alumni concert, violin teacher Ron Francois jumped at the chance to suggest his former student, Chris Jusell.
Tonight at 7:30 in the University Center for the Arts, Jusell will give a solo violin performance for an audience filled not only with music lovers but also his proud professor.
Francois, who taught Jusell both violin and chamber music during his time at the university, has nothing but praise for his former student.
â€œChris was just a terrific student and an inspiration to a lot of people,â€ Francois said. â€œIâ€™m sure everybodyâ€™s curious to see what heâ€™s been up to.â€
During his time at CSU, 2008 graduate Chris Jusell was more than a learner â€“â€“ he was an innovator of music.
â€œHe did a lot of extra work for the (music) department,â€ Francois said.
As an undergraduate, Jusell served as concertmaster of the CSU orchestra, and he arranged music for both himself and the CSU opera â€œThe Child and the Apparition.â€
Jusellâ€™s undeniable contributions to the university made him a perfect choice to kick off the UCAâ€™s new series of alumni concerts, said Jennifer Clary, director of marketing for the School of the Arts.
Every semester, the UCA will now host a performance highlighting either one or multiple alumni of the School of the Arts, and the talented former students will show off a multitude of artistic styles.
â€œWe are open to anything,â€ Clary said.
The alumni concert series is sponsored by the alumni relations program and new Friends of the UCA, which is a membership-based program that started last fall.
â€œFriends of the UCA is a nice way to interact with not only alumni but also community members who are interested in the arts,â€ Clary said.
At tonightâ€™s concert, Jusell, who also plays violin with the local band Danielle Ate the Sandwich, will perform classical pieces including Bachâ€™s â€œPartita No. 1 in B minorâ€ and contemporary, self-arranged songs including â€œHopâ€ by Paul Lansky.
â€œI played and arranged pieces by these composers a lot at CSU and after. The pieces I am going to play are a good indicator of what Iâ€™ve been up to since graduation,â€ Jusell said in a statement made to the School of the Arts.
Tonightâ€™s concert will be held in the Organ Recital Hall, and attendees will get the chance to speak with Jusell during a â€œMeet the Artist Receptionâ€ after his performance.
Staff writer Colleen McSweeney can be reached at email@example.com.
- What: Alumni Concert, Special Guest: Chris Jusell
- Where: Organ Recital Hall, UCA
- When: Thurs., April 7, 7:30 p.m.
- Cost: $7 for CSU students, $1 for youth (2 â€“ 17), $12 for adult