Seton Hill Faculty, Students and Alumni Perform at New York City’s Carnegie Hall
On June 18, 2023, Mark A. Boyle, associate professor of music and director of choral and vocal activities at Seton Hill, as well as Seton Hill students and alumni, took part in MidAmerica Productions’ 40th season staging shows at Carnegie Hall. When Dr. Boyle was invited to conduct the performance, he made it a priority to bring Seton Hill students, current and former, with him to participate in the experience.
“It was truly life altering for all of us,” Dr. Boyle said. “I know the students are just as grateful as I am that Seton Hill wanted them to have this mountaintop experience.”
"The opportunity to get out of our own comfort zones that this event provided was an amazing feat," said Seton Hill student Benjamin Sanner, a social work major who is a member of the University's Una Voce Chamber Choir. "Whether that was being in New York or getting up on that stage, we all learned something new about ourselves. I think we can all take away something from that to put towards how we go about our future endeavors."
Dr. Boyle mindfully chose the work of Nunes Garcia as the focus of his performance. His intent was to bring attention and give deserved recognition to this often-overlooked South American native’s music.
Seton Hill alumnus David Emanuelson '14, vocal music director and music department co-chair at Hempfield Area High School, was able to incorporate his past experience at Seton Hill with his current work into the preparation and performance at Carnegie Hall.
“Being able to perform the premiere of that piece and work with professional, top-level musicians gave me a sense of pride in not only our music program, but in our university’s overall support towards the arts.”
“I could not be more proud of our current group of Setonians carrying on the incredible tradition of vocal music,” he said. “I was even more excited to share this with my current high school students!”
Emanuelson gave credit to his Seton Hill professors for pushing him to develop his piano skills and become the musician he is today.
Emily Hazlett '21, choral director at Greensburg-Salem High School, was another Seton Hill alumna who took part in this experience. Emily was enthusiastic in discussing what it felt like to represent Seton Hill University at this event.
“Being able to perform the premiere of that piece and work with professional, top-level musicians gave me a sense of pride in not only our music program, but in our university’s overall support towards the arts,” she said.
Emily praises Seton Hill for the opportunities it provided her during her time as a student, as well as how her experience at Seton Hill prepared her to be successful in the world post-graduation. Emily plans to take her experience from this performance to help expose students to different genres of music and to break stereotypes about who can be a composer or a performer.
Dr. Boyle expressed his pride in the Seton Hill students who were part of a massed choir of 135 voices. The students, he said, “conducted themselves as true Setonians. They are our best ambassadors.”