Improv Lab with the Cocek! Brass Band, February 2022
SLU's Improv Lab with the
Cocek! Brass Band in the Launders Underground, spring 2022

For Spring 2024, six different ensembles are open to students, three of which are also open to the community. See each ensemble's page for audition, rehearsal, and performance information. Normally, students receive 0.25 unit of credit for taking an ensemble.

MUS 021. LAURENTIAN SINGERS. A select undergraduate vocal ensemble that performs both on and off-campus through the year. Their far-ranging repertoire is drawn from traditional choral sources as well as world and popular idioms. The Laurentian Singers tour each spring break. Jason Bishop, director. Open to St. Lawrence students only.

MUS 022. ST. LAWRENCE CHORAL SOCIETY (UNIVERSITY CHORUS). Open to the entire university community and residents of the North Country, the St. Lawrence Choral Society (University Chorus) performs three to four times per year, both on the St. Lawrence campus as well as at other locations in the region. Programs feature a wide variety of accompanied and unaccompanied repertoire, along with celebrated works for chorus and orchestra. Jason Bishop, director. Open to St. Lawrence students, faculty & staff, and members of the community.

SLU String Orchestra
String Orchestra rehearsal in Peterson-Kermani Performance Hall, fall 2022

MUS 025. STRING ORCHESTRA. An ensemble that performs repertoire from the 17th century through the present. Recent concerts have included works by Antonio Vivaldi, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, James Horner, and John Williams. Christian Hosmer, director. Open to St. Lawrence students and the community.

MUS 026. WIND ENSEMBLE. This ensemble explores a range of music covering over 200 years of repertoire in a variety of styles and is open to wind, brass, and percussion players. Theresa Witmer, director. Open to St. Lawrence students and the community.

MUS 027. RHYTHM & ROOTS ENSEMBLE. This ensemble takes a particular strand of vernacular music as its focus each semester and is typically open to guitarists, fiddlers, vocalists, percussionists—in short, whatever the ensemble needs to perform that music. Recent topics of study include Hawaiian music, the music of Motown, and New Orleans rhythm and blues. Not offered Spring 2024.

MUS 028. IMPROV LAB. This ensemble provides opportunities for students to develop their interests and skills in a variety of American popular musics. Students research recordings outside of class and use them as the basis for further study in class. Rehearsals emphasize playing by ear in conjunction with using varying degrees of written notation. Tim Savage, director. Open to St. Lawrence students only.

MUS 029. SOUNDSANDBOX. Do you catch yourself drumming incessantly on tabletops, singing along with the washing machine's beat, or making saxophones out of pizza boxes and broken straws? The SoundSandBox is for you, a place to explore ways of making sound together. Skilled musicians are welcome, but all students may audition for this ensemble. Recent projects include doing a smartphone ensemble, collaborating with NYC-based percussionist Susie Ibarra, and accompanying a silent horror film on Halloween. Not offered Spring 2024.

MUS 032. FUNK ENSEMBLE. Dubbed SLUFunk by its members, the Funk Ensemble primarily performs American R&B, soul, and funk music, but has also explored styles ranging from big-band jazz to Nigerian Afro-beat. Dual-listed in the History Department, the ensemble seeks to understand the historical context and significance of the music it plays. SLUFunk is modeled on a working band: participants make decisions about membership and repertoire and take on such necessary tasks as writing arrangements, promoting performances, and lugging gear. Larry Boyette, director. Open to St. Lawrence students only.