All Elon University students have the opportunity to participate in a variety of instrumental and vocal ensembles. Chamber music is a vibrant part of the Music Department.
The Elon Music Ambassadors is a unique chamber ensemble consisting of a select group of music majors chosen by the music department faculty based on their musicianship, academic and leadership skills. Each semester, this ensemble creates a theme-based program that is both entertaining and educational. The students work together to select music that relates to the chosen theme and arrange the music for the unique instrumentation of the ensemble.
Throughout the semester, the program is written, rehearsed and performed within the Elon University community. The primary role of the Elon Music Ambassadors ensemble, however, is to showcase Elon University and specifically, the music department by performing for high school students throughout the southeastern United States.
The Elon Music Ambassadors, under the direction of music faculty Virginia Novine Whittaker, engages in multiple performance tours each semester. Over the past two years, EMA has visited 32 different high schools in five states, performing for approximately 4,000 high school students.
Past programs include:
"A Musical Journey through History” highlighting music from eras spanning Medieval to the present .
"One World, One Voice" featuring music from Africa, India, Italy, Ireland, Latin America, Japan and the US.
"Soul of the Cinema" celebrating the role of music in film from the silent era to modern day.
Read more about the Elon Music Ambassadors:
Elon Music Ambassadors perform throughout northern Virginia
Elon Music Ambassadors present: Soul of the Cinema
One World, One Voice
Elon Music Ambassadors return from performance tour
Elon Music Ambassadors Preview Concert
Elon Music Ambassadors encourage aspiring music students
Elon Music Ambassadors feels the ‘soul’ in new show celebrating cinema
The Percussion Ensemble performs a wide range of contemporary music for percussion including works by Chavez, Beck, Benson, and Varese. Marimbas, gongs, hand drums, and timpani blend with shakers, rattles, bells, and cymbals to form an intriguing and exciting ensemble sound. During the spring semester, ensemble members are responsible for composing or arranging all of the music to be played.
View a list of recent repertoire.
Guest artists/clinicians who have appeared at Elon include: Sandy Blocker, Christopher Deane, Mark Ford, Massie Johnson, John Tafoya, Carol Stumpf, Jimmy Finnie, Bill Rice, Arnold Sykes, Cort McClaren, Nathan Daughtry, Danny Frye, Rick Dior, and John Hanks.
Percussion Ensemble rehearses Wednesdays from 5:30-7:10 p.m. Open by audition only. Contact Jon Metzger for information about auditions.
The Elon University Saxophone quartets and quintets, directed by Virginia Novine Whittaker, perform a wide variety of musical styles and genres, ranging from baroque to contemporary. Saxophone ensembles include Elon University music majors, music minors and non- majors. Elon University saxophone quartets perform on campus each semester and have toured throughout South Carolina, Virginia and Maryland.
Saxophone quartets rehearse two hours each week. Rehearsal times are determined at the beginning of each semester and are coordinated with class schedules of the members. Please contact Virginia Novine Whittaker about auditions.
View a list of recent repertoire.
The Flute Ensemble, directed by Linda Cykert, meets each semester and is open to all students who play the flute (non-Music Majors by audition). Flute Ensemble rehearses for one hour each week and has performed at nursing homes, local churches and other venues, Elon University Music Departmentals and other campus events, benefit concerts including one for ARC of Alamance County, and an inaugural concert for the Community Center at Elon Community Church. Students may receive one credit for each semester of participation by registering for Music 106 B.
The Elon World Percussion Ensemble shares the joys of the rhythmic, musical and cultural aspects of West African, Afro-Cuban, Afro-Rican and Brazilian music. Under the direction of Jim Roberts, this performing group focuses on hand, bell and stick drum or other percussion techniques that are used in a wide variety of musical situations with a traditional and improvisational base. No experience is required and it is open to any member of the student body.
The Low Brass Ensemble, directed by Matthew Buckmaster, performs varied repertoire for mixed trombones, euphoniums, and tubas. From standard instrumentation such as trombone or tuba quartets to full mixed brass choirs, this versatile ensemble adapts to student specialties as needed. The group performs regularly on campus and in the community. It is open to all Elon students regardless of major.
The Elon Guitar Ensemble gives guitarists the opportunity to play and perform in a group - working on reading skills, musicianship and other techniques essential for playing with other musicians. Repertoire runs from Vivaldi and Bach to Santana and the Beatles - open to all skill levels from advanced beginners to advanced players. Some reading (both standard notation and tablature) ability required.