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Performance Ensembles

The Department of Music’s large and small ensembles are filled with talented students, both full time music major and non-music major status. At the Josephine B. Abney Cultural Center Auditorium, the ensembles present performances regularly each semester and participate in an annual themed Collage Concert involving rapid-fire performances by the entire department. University ensembles also embark on spring tours to showcase Lander’s musical talents and to recruit quality student musicians from regional high schools who are interested in attending Lander University.


Larger Ensembles:


Chamber Strings

Lander University's Chamber Strings Ensemble is an orchestral ensemble open to the entire Lander student body, regardless of major. Community participants add a diverse mix of ages, ethnicities, and playing abilities. Music majors who participate in Chamber Strings have the opportunity to take on leadership roles in the ensemble as principal of a section or concertmaster, while non-majors and community members will find a friendly and stress-free environment where they may continue to grow as musicians.

Chamber Strings meets once a week on Monday evenings from 5:45-7:00 p.m. Even the busiest student will find that this rehearsal time easily fits into a week filled with Lander academics and activities. Amy Blackwood, full-time faculty member at Lander, serves as the coordinator for the strings area and participates in Chamber Strings as a violist. To obtain more information about the strings program or to ask about participating in Chamber Strings, please contact Amy Blackwood at

Jazz Ensemble

The Lander University Jazz Ensemble is a 23-piece big band that performs standard repertoire, including compositions originally performed by Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus, Miles Davis, Glen Miller, Count Basie, Bob Mintzer and many others. The ensemble explores a variety of different styles of jazz representing different eras of the genre including Afro-Cuban, swing, pop, bebop, cha-cha and mambo, with the idea of exposing its student members as well as the audience to various kinds of grooves, rhythms, melodies, harmonies and tempos.

The ensemble is made up of undergraduate students who are majoring in music, as well as students pursuing degrees in other fields, including biology, engineering, business, and nursing.

The students in the ensemble register for it as a class and receive elective credit. They rehearse three days a week and give concerts throughout the school year. The group is under the direction of Dr. Robert Gardiner. For additional information about the Jazz Ensemble, please contact Dr. Gardiner at

University Singers

University Singers carries on a longstanding tradition of choral singing at Lander University. The men and women of this large choir come from a wide variety of majors across the campus. The ensemble welcomes beginning and experienced singers who want to be part of a committed community of musical learners. Fast-paced rehearsals focus on great choral music of varying difficulty from the Renaissance to the 21st century. Dr. Chuck Neufeld leads this ensemble, helping students obtain necessary skills and musical knowledge for a lifetime of music making.

Auditioned choir students may join Lander University's Choir Clustered Learning Community (CLC), a residential learning community only for Lander choir members. A limited number of additional scholarships are available to choir members who are not music majors. Students who are interested in joining our choral ensembles and learning about the audition process should contact Dr. Neufeld at or 864-388-8346.

Wind Ensemble

The Lander University Wind Ensemble is the premier instrumental concert ensemble at Lander University. Under the direction of Music Department Chair, Dr. Reed Gallo, the Wind Ensemble performs two concerts a semester of challenging and audience-inspiring music. The repertoire consist of pieces by composers from the Renaissance, Baroque, Classical and Modern periods of music. The final Spring semester performance showcases graduating seniors with their own compositions, orchestration projects, or as a soloist.

Practice schedules for the Wind Ensemble are flexible for both music major and non-music major students. 

To see a concert schedule, please check both the Lander University and the College of Arts and Humanities schedule of events pages.

Those interested in the Wind Ensemble should contact Dr. Gallo at


Smaller Ensembles:


Instrumental Chamber Ensembles

Instrumental Chamber Ensembles - including brass ensembles, woodwind ensemble, percussion ensemble, and jazz combo-offer opportunities for instrumentalists to perform in smaller groups. Chamber ensembles perform on concerts and at other venues on the Lander campus and in the greater Greenwood area. The brass quintet performs for thousands at Lander Commencement each semester. Student jazz combos are in high demand both for university and city functions. Directed by qualified faculty, these ensembles provide valuable performance experience for students seeking to become professionals in the music field.

Interested students should contact:

Piano Ensemble

Piano Ensemble provides Lander undergraduate students with the opportunity to play duets (two pianists at one piano), piano duos (two pianists at two pianos), and quartets (four pianists at two pianos. Taught in a masterclass format, the ensemble is open to anyone with experience playing the piano. All participants will play at least one piano duet or piano duo with one of the piano faculty and at least one quartet with other students and faculty.

Every spring, Piano Ensemble members present a recital as part of the Lander University Keyboard Festival. Recent performances have included W. A. Mozart duet Sonatas, arrangements of Rachmaninoff Preludes, Debussy's Petite Suite for piano duet, and popular tunes arranged for two pianos by Lander Professor Emeritus Anthony Lenti. The ensemble recital has also featured students performing in quartet performances of Saint Saёns Danse Macabre, movements from Mussorgsky Pictures at an Exhibition, and Tchaikovsky Marche Slave.

Interested pianists are encouraged to contact Robert Kelley (, 864-513-1593).

Old Main Singers

Old Main Singers is Lander University's chamber choir, named for the oldest and highest tower on campus. This auditioned ensemble sings a repertoire of masterworks from plainchant to the 21st century. The men and women of Old Main Singers bring their musical skills together each semester to create thoughtful, artistic performances with notable professionalism and excellence. Ensemble members develop valuable connections with each other and with the music they perform.

Auditioned choir students may join Lander University's Choir Clustered Learning Community (CLC), a residential learning community only for Lander choir members. A limited number of additional scholarships are available to choir members who are not music majors. Students who are interested in joining our choral ensembles and learning about the audition process should contact Dr. Chuck Neufeld at or 864-388-8346.

Opera Workshop

Lander University's Opera Workshop is designed to provide undergraduate students with the opportunity to learn about stagecraft and the art of operatic singing. Students are assigned principal, supporting, and chorus roles and are exposed to techniques involving character development, stage deportment, and costuming. Weekly vocal coachings and staging rehearsals prepare students for the demands of operatic performance.

Workshop repertoire has included scenes from Barab's Little Red Riding Hood, Bizet's Carmen, Britten's A Midsummer Night's Dream, Criswell's Rhythm and Rhyme in Mother Goose Time, Delibe's Lakmé, Donizetti's The Elixir of Love, Humperdinck's Hansel and Gretel, Menotti's The Consul, The Medium, and The Old Maid and the Thief, Mozart's Cosi fan tutte, Don Giovanni, The Magic Flute, and The Marriage of Figaro, Offenbach's La Périchole, Puccini's La Bohème, and Strauss' Der Rosenkavalier.

Opera Workshop is offered every other academic year. Students are required to be concurrently enrolled in applied voice or to have had extensive vocal and acting experience. Please contact Opera Workshop director Chuck Neufeld at or 864-388-8346 for further information.

Pep Band

Pep Band has recently been recommissioned to perform at home basketball games. Reinstated in 2017-18, Lander's Pep Band is seeking new members to grow this exciting ensemble.

For further details, please contact Dr. Reed Gallo at