Students in the SOTA music program can choose to study audio production where they can acquire a clear understanding of the fundamentals of sound, their physics, and how they apply to the creative process of audio production, music recording, and live performances.
Students receive hands-on experience creating audio productions, music recordings, and livestreams in conjunction with other students at SOTA and other colleges within the university. This cooperative process enhances the student’s experience and overall learning while fostering interpersonal skills and leadership in the community.
The ever-changing landscape of recording and media technology requires a teaching approach that empowers students' flexibility and adaptation. Rather than focusing on how to use a specific piece of equipment or software package, students receive the theoretical background that will help them approach novel situations and the latest technology with confidence and expertise. Students can apply their knowledge and skills to develop their own techniques and creative solutions.
This track is ideal for students who aspire to work in the commercial music industry as a composer, arranger, or producer in studio and live music settings. The track provides significant training in music theory with experience both in traditional and commercial approaches.
Students in the SOTA music program can choose to minor in audio production where they can acquire a clear understanding of the fundamentals of sound, their physics, and how they apply to the creative process of audio production, music recording, and live performances.
Adam Pleiman is a creative director, chief engineer, and multi-instrumentalist. He has worked in music and sound in many capacities since 2001, including studio recording, audio post-production, live reinforcement, and strategy. He believes in the ability that music and sound possess in conveying emotion and strives to help others understand this connection.
Adam's career in audio has earned notable credits in multiple disciplines. As a music engineer he has worked with bands including Coldplay, 30 Seconds to Mars, and The Collingsworth Family who's 2017 release "Best of the Collingsworth Family" earned a roots gospel album of the year Grammy nomination. As a composer and producer he has written and produced music for Gillette, John Frieda, Secret, and ADM among others. In audio post-production he has landed credits for dialog work on films including Disney's Frozen as well as The Hunger Games.
John Zappa, MM
John Zappa is a performer and educator. At Northern Kentucky University, he teaches trumpet, Jazz Theory, Arranging, Jazz History, Composition, Improvisation and Jazz Appreciation as well as coaching a variety of ensembles. As an educator, Zappa has written a text book for Jazz Appreciation and developed Jazz Theory and Arranging courses to fit the needs of the students at NKU. He also developed a course called Composition For Commercial Media which blends composition with technology. Many of Zappa’s former students have gone on to successful performing careers and some as successful music educators. His trumpet students range from serious jazz players to lead/commercial players and classical players looking for better technique.
He also maintains a performing schedule and has appeared throughout the United States, Asia and Europe. Zappa’s professional credits as a trumpeter run the gambit of musical styles and ensembles. While primarily a jazz trumpeter appearing regularly with several big bands and jazz combos, he also plays with salsa bands, concert orchestras, pit orchestras, and show bands. John is also an accomplished studio musician recording music for theme parks and T.V. commercials as well recording for various album projects which have included the Grammy nominated “When Bullfrogs Croak” by Zach Morgan and “We Want the Funk” by Bootsy Collins for the movie “Undercover Brother.”
Zappa has recorded his own music on albums including “Not Too Slow, Not Too Fast” and “Moon and Shadow” with famed and legendary Cuban drummer, Ignacio Berroa. Another album called “Now Hear This” is also the name of his band that features his original compositions and arrangements that explore world beat rhythms in a contemporary jazz setting. John has worked consistently as a band leader fronting dance bands of different sorts as well as jazz groups for 22+years. One such group featured the drummer of Woody Herman and Stan Kenton fame John Von Ohlen.
John has performed a variety of concerts with headliners including Don Rickles, Eddie Money, Wayne Newton, Leslie Gore, The Temptations, The O’Jay’s and Frankie Vallie, in addition to jazz concerts with well-known artists including Joe Henderson, Clark Terry, Ignacio Berroa, Jimmy Heath, Lew Soloff, Terell Stafford and Jeff Coffin.
Kurt Sander, DMA
Kurt Sander's compositions have been performed in 15 countries on five different continents. Much of his choral and instrumental work takes its inspiration from the sublime dimensions of the Eastern Orthodox faith and the richness of its artistic traditions.
His sacred choral work has been recorded and performed by professional ensembles throughout the world including Cappella Romana, the Kastalsky Choir (RUS), the Cincinnati Camerata, the Cantata Singers of Ottawa (CAN), the St. Romanos Cappella, the Clarion Choir, Archangel Voices, the Patriarch Tikhon Choir, and The Orthodox Singers (RUS) and the PaTRAM Institute Singers.
In 2017, he received a commission by the Patriarch Tikhon Russian-American Music Institute (PaTRAM) for a new English-language setting of the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom. This 90-minute work was recorded by the PaTRAM Institute Singers under the direction of Peter Jermihov and released as a 2 CD set on Reference Recordings label in 2019. The CD of this work was nominated for a Grammy in 2020 under the "Best Choral Album" category.
Sander was one of five featured composers on the collaborative composition "Heaven and Earth" which was commissioned by the St. John of Damascus Society and will be recorded in 2021 by the renowned choral ensemble Cappella Romana under the direction of Michael Boyer. The CD is scheduled for international release in 2022 on the Cappella Recordings label.
Sander has also acquired notoriety for his chamber and orchestral writing. He was recently named a finalist in the American Prize for his song cycle "Ella's Song" about the life of St. Elizabeth, Grand Duchess of Russia. Other instrumental works have been performed by the Transylvania State Philharmonic Orchestra, the Kentucky Symphony Orchestra, the Brasov Philharmonic (Romania), the Pleven Philharmonic (Bulgaria), the Cleveland Chamber Symphony, Synchronia, the Corbett Trio, the Solaris Wind Quintet, and the St. Petersburg Quartet.
Sander currently serves as Professor of Music and Coordinator of Music Theory and Composition at Northern Kentucky University. He holds degrees in composition from Northwestern University, the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and Cleveland State University where he studied with Bain Murray, Alan Stout, Rudolph Bubalo, and Andrew Imbrie.
Sander's music is published through Musica Russica and Media Press, Inc.