Community Engagement Leadership Team

If you have any questions about the Community Engagement Leadership Team or its activities, please contact CELT chair:

Keitha Hamann

Community Engagement Leadership Team (CELT) is an ad-hoc committee of faculty, staff, and graduate students who formed in 2009 thanks to an Engaged Department Grant.

CELT seeks to support and expand community engagement opportunities into the scholarship/creative, teaching, and service missions of the School of Music through:

  • Funding Support: Offered biannually, these community engagement grants provided an opportunity for faculty, or graduate students with faculty sponsors, to apply for up to $750 in funding support for a project that incorporates community engagement into research/creative activities, teaching, or service missions of the School of Music. The mini-grant program is currently paused for reflection, partnership-development, and fundraising support.
  • Ongoing Project Support: Support for projects that begin as single-project grants and grow into sustaining partnerships are eligible for ongoing project support.
  • Resource Hub for Engagement: The CELT Team serves as a conduit for community partners and School of Music students, faculty, and resources. Team members provide mentoring on an ongoing basis to participants looking to deepen and develop the engagement aspect of their research and creative activities.

Previously Funded Community Engagement Projects

Voices of Hope

Amanda Weber, DMA conducting, led a women's choir at the Minnesota Correctional Facility in Shakopee at the request of the prison's director of education. 

University of Minnesota Band Project

Professor Laura Sindberg brought together undergraduate music education students and beginning band students in an after-school instructional program. 

Fairbault High School Performance for Choral Students 

Professor Jean del Santo gave a performance for Fairbault High School choir students.

University Opera Theatre in the Schools 

Professor David Walsh provided outreach to area schools through the University Opera Theatre program. 

Duo Gelland Residency 

Duo Gelland served a residency in 2016 at the School of Music. 

Paper Days Band Composition Project 

Dennis Hawkins' band The Paper Days partnered with a collegiate band to create a new composition, and then engaged with Middle School Bands around the metro area to perform the new work. 

Other projects:

  • Educational Videos for Guitar 
  • Worlds of Improvisation (Associate Professor Scott Currie)
  • Uniting Twin Cities Sambistas for May Day 2017 (Associate Professor Scott Currie)
  • Global Voices 

The Senior Walker Project (German and French) 

Students from Professor Wendy Zaro-Mullins' German Vocal Lit/French Vocal Lit classes connected with seniors from the Walker Methodist Senior home for an afternoon of song.

The Korean Music Project 

Soo Jin Lee developed a Korean Musical Project for elementary students at a school in Rochester, MN. 

Music Therapy at the Amherst Wilder Foundation 

Eric Selle partnered with the Amherst Wilder Foundation to provide music enrichment and music-assisted movement to older adults. 

Skylark Opera

A collaboration between Skylark Opera and UMN Opera Theatre to provide live opera experiences for student operas. 

Encountering the Orchestra

Professor Kathy Romey partnered with the Mississippi Valley Orchestra for graduate choral conductors to get the opportunity to attend a rehearsal with the Mississippi Valley Orchestra and work on their conducting skills, a rare opportunity for choral conductors. 

Bluegrass Mass  

Professor Matthew Mehaffey and the University Singers invited Hopkins and Eastview High School to perform a piece by UMN alumna Carol Barnett entitled Bluegras Mass.

Henry Purcell's One-Man Opera

David Kosizek presented Purcell's One-Man Opera for students from the MacPhail Center for Music. 

Voices of Hope Women's Prison Choir

Amanda Weber started Voices of Hope Women's Prison Choir. She brought the Maroon Campus Singers and the Women's Prison Choir together for a special outreach experience.  

Drum Circles for Episcopal Homes 

Student Eric Selle partnered with Episcopal Homes in St. Paul to provide a drum circle experience for senior residents.

Osseo High School Vocal Pedagogy Project

Professor Jean del Santo and her Vocal Pedagogy class worked with Osseo High School students on vocal pedagogy. 

Other projects: 

University of Minnesota Band Project

Professor Laura Sindberg brought together undergraduate music education students and beginning band students in an after-school instructional program.

Music on Campus

Professor Laura Sindberg partnered with the Minneapolis Public Schools to bring high school music students to campus for a day of mini-classes and seminars, showcasing the opportunities awaiting students at the college level.

Start Up Steel

As part of her doctoral thesis, Marilyn K. Clark Silva (percussion DMA) partnered with the music teacher at New Prague High School to write a book for beginning steel band for students and teachers who have no prior teaching experience, creating a fun, accessible, and affordable music experience for students who may not have access to more traditional school ensembles.

Performer’s Role in New Music

Jeremy Johnston (percussion DMA) partnered with Chicago flutist, Stefanie Abderhalden, to perform as the Apollo-Duo, presenting their recently-commissioned contemporary pieces followed by Q&A sessions to high school music classes across the mid-west.


DMA Voice Candidate David Kozisek partnered with teachers at Westview Elementary School to design SingOut!, a classroom vocal music curriculum designed to expose middle school students to the vocal arts while teaching them phrasing, breathing, internal energy and mental harmony, and emphasizing the importance of music as a lifelong endeavor.

Integrating Tai Chi Principles into Piano Playing

Jing Chang, an alumna of Professor Shaw’s piano studio, partnered with the Stirling Tai Chi Society and Master Stirling Levine to explore, in the form of a seminar, how the principles of Tai Chi of phrasing, breathing, internal energy, and mental harmony apply to piano performance.

Shifting Perspectives

Saxophone Doctor of Music Arts (DMA) alumnus, Tyler Cessor, partnered with the Bedlam Theatre and Twin Cities artists of diverse disciplines to produce “Shifting Perspectives” a series of thought-provoking performance pieces that brought to light ideas and conversations on race, gender, ethnicity, and art. 

Twin Cities Fringe Opera Presents "Hansel and Gretel"

Brian Dowdy and the Twin Cities Fringe Opera presented Engelbert Humperdink’s Hansel and Gretel at North Minneapolis’ Capri Theater.

Osseo High School Vocal Pedagogy Project

Professor Jean del Santo and her Vocal Pedagogy class worked with Osseo High School students on vocal pedagogy. 

New 21st Century Electro-Acoustic Chamber Works in Concert

Kyle Hutchins brought innovative chamber works with technology to performances at various off-campus venues with his chamber ensemble AVIDduo. 

Star Studio! Children's Hospital Performance

Jennifer Runck and Lisa Perry brought their clarinet duo to perform in the Children's Hospital. 

University of Minnesota Brass Symposium in Alexandria, MN 

An opportunity for brass students and faculty to interact with students from Alexandria and the surrounding areas. 

CMW Presents: New Music by UMN Composers for Dal Niente 

CMW, in partnership with the UMN graduate student composers group, Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies, and Dal Niente of Chicago, presented workshops and a concert for young composers and performers during Dal Niente's University of Minnesota School of Music residency from July 27-29, 2015.

Bringing Classical Music to Suburbs of Minneapolis-St. Paul

UMN School of Music students Neil Nanyi Qiang and Minjie Bao brought chamber music ensembles to the suburbs of Minneapolis and St. Paul.  

Other projects:

  • Mobile Music Concert Start-up (Associate Professor Jerry Luckhardt)
  • Teaching Artists from the Twin Cities (Associate Professor Keitha Hamann)
  • Brazilfest Family Carnaval (Associate Professor Scott Currie)
  • Drum Line Worskhop with Minneapolis Public Schools (Associate Professor Laura Sindberg)
  • Experience Korean Rhythms!

Inclusive Environments for People with Learning Disabilities

Caroline Hand (conducting DMA alumna) partnered with Opportunity Partners to perform a chair-and-stick and small wind ensemble for people with learning disabilities and members of the University Wind Band at the final concert in Ted Mann Concert Hall. 

Twin Cities Sambistas United for May Day

Professor Scott Currie partnered with Batacuda del Norte to bring community expertise to the world music ensemble, preparing them to march in the Minneapolis May Day parade. 

R-Word Campaign Concert

DMA conducting alumna, Caroline Hand, partnered with Blaine High School to launch an "R-Word Campaign" concert that featured an inclusive group of the high school choir and the special education students, who were supported by a chamber group of music education and music therapy majors.

U of M Brass Symposium

Professor of Trombone, Tom Ashworth, partnered with brass ensembles from across Minnesota and the Midwest to host a weekend-long symposium of performances, workshops, and events.

Other projects:

  • Conducting Seminar Outreach Program (Professor Kathy Romey)
  • La Rappresentazione di Anima e di Corpo (Professor David Walsh)
  • Batucada Do Norte workshop with Jorge Alabê (Assoicate Professor Scott Currie)

Imuka Singers

Professor Kathy Romey led this program which used the platform of choral music to promote economic development and foster cultural ties. 

Other programs:

  • A Lecture-Demonstration Performance of Sacred Text Art Song for the Christian Service (Associate Professor Wendy Zaro-Mullins)
  • Teaching Artists in Music (Associate Professor Keitha Hamann)
  • Music, Movement, and Sign Language (Professor Matthew Mehaffey)
  • Afro-Brazilian Carnaval (Associate Professor Scott Currie)
  • UM Symphony/GTCYS Mentorship Project (Associate Professor Mark Russell Smith)
  • Lebun und Lieder (Associate Professor Wendy Zaro-Mullins)
  • Impact of the Arts on Student Engagement in Learning: An Exploratory Case Study (Associate Professor Akosua Addo)
  • Music on Campus (Associate Professor Laura Sindberg)
  • Music Composition at Avalon School
  • Twin Cities Sambistas United for May Day (Associate Professor Scott Currie)
  • Wagner Mini-Ring Project  (Associate Professor Wendy Zaro-Mullins)
  • Arts Connection Recitals
  • Cantus Residency (Professor Kathy Romey)
  • La Vie par la Mélodie (Associate Professor Wendy Zaro-Mullins)
  • Building Connections with Cooperating Teachers (Associate Professor Keitha Hamann)
  • Inspiring Young Musicians: The UMN Clarinet Studio on Tour 
  • Robert Robertson Gospel Singing Presentation (Associate Professor Scott Currie)
  • Britten War Requiem (Professor Kathy Romey)
  • Young Band Project (Associate Professor Laura Sindberg)
  • Twin Cities Youth Who Are Homeless: Make Music Together
  • Jazz I Clinic & Performance at Sartell High School (Associate Professor Dean Sorenson)
  • Opera Theatre Chorus: Die Fledermaus and Elmer Gantry (Associate Professor David Walsh)
  • Parallaxis: Composition Project with the Minneapolis Institute of Arts
  • Music Ethnography of the Twin Cities: Sounding Culture in the Somali Diaspora
  • Opera Theatre Chorus: Die Zauberflöte (Associate Professor David Walsh)
  • Lecture-Demonstration on Afro-Cuban Improvisation (Associate Professor Scott Currie)
  • Music Integration in the K12 Classroom
  • Festival of Community Bands (Associate Professor Jerry Luckhardt)
  • Studio Collaboration with Otsego Elementary School (Associate Professor Jean del Santo)
  • Sacred Singer Vocal Workshop (Associate Professor Wendy Zaro-Mullins)
  • Designing Collaborative Field Experiences for Preservice Music Educators (Associate Professor Keitha Hamann)
  • Lecture-Demonstration on Hindustani Improvisation (Associate Professor Scott Currie)
  • The Upstream Arts Collaborative Program Evaluation (Associate Professor Akosua Addo)
  • African Music Projects
  • Choral Connections: East Meets West
  • Flute & Percussion Presentation Tour
  • Contemporary Music Workshop/American India Exchange
  • Educational Outreach Through the Summer Chorus