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Academy Notes

Dear Academy Family:

I hope you were able to take some time to rest and enjoy one another over Thanksgiving!  Suddenly, the calendar has turned to December, leading to lots of wonderful performance opportunities at the Academy.  Thank you, in advance, for reading the information below very carefully.

  • Thank you so much for your support of our online tutti! auction.  Between November 12 and 21, we sold more than $14,000 worth of merchandise!  If you were a donor, a sponsor, a winner, or helped with advertising in any way, we are most grateful.  All proceeds of the auction will support teacher development, tuition assistance, and Academy programs.  Please keep our generous business donors in mind as you do your holiday shopping.  Our “Buy Local” guide can be found here.
  • This is the year the Girl Choir program presents a Christmas concert.  Please join more than 300 girls in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel on Saturday, December 14th at 2 pm or 7 pm for the 2013 edition of “Yuletide Carols.”  Tickets can be purchased online.
  • Did you know we have an adult orchestra?  The LAMP (Lawrence Adult Music Programs) Orchestra will present its December concert in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel on Tuesday, December 17th at 7 pm.  Please enjoy this FREE concert…and perhaps consider joining the ensemble for second semester!
  • Several Academy string teachers will collaborate to present string group recitals on Sunday, December 15th in Harper Hall in the Lawrence Conservatory.  Please join us at 12:30, 1:45, or 3:00 for one of these free recitals.
  • Are you looking for stocking stuffers or Academy apparel?  We have Wilmar’s chocolate Santas and chocolate mints for sale in the Academy office.  We will also have a giant apparel sale (select in-stock merchandise only) in the Academy lobby beginning next week.
  • Did you miss out on the fall West African Drum and Dance class?  Fear not!  We are pleased to offer a second session (appropriate for returning students or new students in grades 5-9) beginning in January.  Please contact the office at 920-832-6632 for further information.
  • Please be sure to check with your studio teacher or ensemble handbook so that you know your lesson or rehearsal schedule for December and January.  Each studio teacher sets his or her own weeks of vacation.  Each ensemble has slightly different start dates in January.  If you have misplaced your handbook, please refer to the Academy website for further information.
  • Note that the Academy of Music is closed from December 22-29, 2013.  No lessons will be taught in the building during that time.  The offices will remain closed until January 2, 2014.

I leave you with words from Nelson Mandela:

“It is music and dancing that make me at peace with the world.”

May you and your family also find peace this holiday season.


Karen Bruno, director

Lawrence Academy of Music

Spring Concert Weekend

Had enough of Wisconsin’s never-ending winter weather? Venture out this weekend and attend an Academy concert in the warmth of the Lawrence Memorial Chapel!

The Academy will present four concerts this weekend.  Saturday’s concerts include the Academy String Orchestra (ASTRO) and the LAMP orchestra at 3 p.m., and the Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble, at 7 p.m.  Sunday the Girl Choir program presents their spring concert Here’s to Song at 2 and 7 p.m.

ASTRO, an ensemble of fifth through eighth grade string students directed by Janet Bond Sutter, will perform a variety of pieces from the traditional Swing Low, Sweet Chariot, to Beethoven’s Allegretto from Symphony No. 7. The adult level LAMP orchestra, under the direction of Rachel Richards, will present a variety of folk songs and dances. Both orchestras join in a fiddling finale, Fiddles on Fire by Mark Williams.

The middle school level Symphonic Band directed by David Hamilton performs Tichelli’s Cajun Folk Songs and Copeland’s Down A Country Lane. Michael Ross, director of the Wind Ensemble, will lead the high school level ensemble in a series of dances, including Shostakovich’s Folk Dances, Danzon No. 2 by Marquez, and Part 1 of Alfred Reed’s Armenian Dances. The ensembles join on stage in Harold Walter’s  lively Instant Concert, a compilation of 30 separate well-known melodies from symphonies, operas, folk songs, spirituals, marches…all in the space of three minutes.

Sunday’s final concert of the Girl Choir season features 330 girls in six choirs, grades 3-12, who will perform music celebrating the joys of singing. Conductors of the program include Karrie Been, Karen Bruno, Amber Evey Schmidt, Patty Merrifield, Cheryl Meyer, and Debbie Lind.

Tickets for all weekend concerts are available at the Lawrence box office, 920-832-6749.

Purchase an Autographed Donald Driver Jersey and Support the Academy

You may remember an autographed Green Bay Packer Donald Driver jersey was part of the tutti! festivities earlier this month. Well, believe it or not, we recently received another!

A  generous donor has given the Academy an autographed Green Bay Packer Donald Driver football jersey, and we would like to make it available to Academy friends and families.
We will be holding a 5-day e-mail auction, awarding the jersey to the top bidder this Friday, March 1, at noon.  All proceeds will benefit Academy programs and the tutti scholarship fund.

Jersey Details:
Donald Driver, the Packers all-time leading receiver, and 2012 winner of “Dancing with the Stars,” hand signed this Green Bay Packer jersey in black marker, along with #80 and “Go Pack Go.” The unframed jersey is green, size large.

How to win:

  • Minimum opening bid is $150.
  • If you are interested in bidding on the jersey, send an e-mail to with your opening bid by Wednesday, February 27 at 8 a.m.  Include your name, phone number, e-mail address and bid.
  • Anyone who places a bid by Wednesday 8 a.m. will be included in any follow-up e-mail bidding notifications. The only information that will be sent to participating bidders is the current top bid amount. Your name and contact information will not be shared.
  • We will send notification of the top opening bid to everyone who placed an opening bid.
  • After notification of the top opening bid, you may continue to place bids via e-mail through Friday at noon. We will copy anyone who is in the bidding for the jersey when we receive additional bids.
  • Bidding will close at noon on Friday, March 1 at noon.

Winning bidder may purchase the jersey with cash, credit card or check payable to Lawrence Academy of Music.

Academy Fleece

Show your support of the Academy with a new fleece jacket! The Academy is offering zippered fleece jackets and headbands for families, alumni, and friends.

The outwear is available in navy blue with a white embroidered Academy logo, or red with the white Girl Choir logo.  Orders are being accepted through October 29. The order form is attached, or may be found online at .

Items will be available for pick-up at the Academy office after November 19. Shipping is available for an additional fee.

Appleton Christmas Parade participants are encouraged to wear their new fleece on the parade route.

Order your fleece today!



Fall Registrations Now Accepted

Pre-registration forms for private instruction in 2012-13 were recently mailed to current Academy families.  The form should be filled out in its entirety and returned with a deposit; this non-refundable deposit will be applied to next year’s bill (it is not an extra fee).  Pre-registration ensures a place in your teacher’s studio for next year, so families are encouraged to take care of this promptly (due June 1st).  Families with a current balance due will need to settle the account before fall pre-registration is accepted.

If your child has auditioned for a large ensemble or is about to do so (Girl Choir, Wind Ensemble, Symphonic Band, ASTRO), we thank you for your patience.  We will get letters out to everyone who auditioned by the end of this month.  It is quite a complex process to track and prepare the correct information for every student we hear!  In addition, some programs may be growing or changing slightly; we want to be sure you have correct information from the start.

Thank you for your continued support of the Academy programs!

New Academy Tuition Assistance Process

A new tuition assistance application and award process has been announced at Lawrence Academy of Music. The process will ensure the ongoing fiscal stability of the Academy while providing assistance to those who need it.  All students who were registered in an Academy program in 2011-12 who wish to apply for tuition assistance (either through the DPI or tutti! scholarship funds) will need to have a complete application turned in to the Academy office by June 15th.

In order to ensure access to as many students as possible, the Academy will limit the funding for each individual student per year.  A student may receive tuition assistance for private instruction on one instrument only.  If s/he wishes to augment that instruction with one large ensemble OR one class such as theory or aural skills, s/he may receive tuition assistance for one additional experience.  As before, students enrolled in an ensemble (ASTRO, girl choir, Wind Ensemble, Symphonic Band) but not enrolled in private instruction will be granted tuition assistance if the family qualifies.

Please note the new Teacher Recommendation Form that is part of the application.  An Academy teacher is required to fill this out for each student who was enrolled in an Academy program in 2011-12.  Teachers may return this form directly to the office; families need not collect it before submitting the rest of the application.  Tuition assistance applications are available now in the Academy office or online.

Welcome From New Academy Director, Karen Bruno

You may have heard that Fred Snyder, esteemed Academy of Music director for nine years, retired this spring. As an Academy employee for thirteen years, I was sad to see him go and wondered who would step into this important position. As I pondered the question, I realized that I had a vision for the Academy as well as a passion for its programming , staff, and students. I decided to apply… and am both honored and humbled that I have been selected to serve as the director of the Academy. I began work on July 1st, and I now know how much I still have to learn!

Some of you may know me through the Academy’s Girl Choir program. As I assume the role of director of the Academy, please know that I will continue to work with the young women and staff of the Girl Choir program. I remain passionate about teaching, and “my girls” feel like an extension of my own family.

Please bear with me as I navigate this new landscape! Fred Snyder was able to accomplish a good deal during his tenure; I hope to continue to move the Academy forward with the assistance of our talented and dedicated teachers and office staff.

Speaking of transitions… we have just been notified that Lawrence University plans to close its post office box on September 1st of this year. You may have noticed, on our catalog and other brochures, that our address has changed. Please make note of our new address, as mail sent to the post office box will be delayed by up to two weeks when it is forwarded:
Lawrence Academy of Music
711 East Boldt Way, SPC 4
Appleton, WI 54911

In addition, we recently realized that the original date of our annual scholarship benefit, tutti!, is in conflict with other community events. Please save the new date:
Friday, February 4th, 2011
6:00 – 9:00 pm
Warch Campus Center, Lawrence University

Our scholarship committee is already working hard to ensure an event that will be fun for adults and youth. If you would like to assist with this important event in the life of the Academy, please contact us at 832-6632.

Thank you so much for your continued dedication to the Lawrence Academy of Music. I look forward to serving the Academy community of students, parents, and staff… wish me luck!


Karen L. Bruno, Director
Lawrence Academy of Music