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Visual and Performing Arts Faculty

Visual Arts Faculty

Dr. Richard Bay


When I teach, I walk a fine line drawn between my practice as an artist and my passions as an art educator.  Until recently I wasn’t aware of how important the combination of these factors are: my skills as a painter; my talent to redefine a moment/idea; my intuitive use of color and line; and, my ability to communicate these pieces as a whole to a broader audience are the reasons I teach the way I do.  The creative dialogue that I take part in every time I stand I front of the blank canvas is carried over to the way I view my students work and revel in their thinking.  Finding and sharing common experiences, giving pupils options for exploration and developing a mutually respected visual language becomes critical to the evolution of their skills.
What I love about teaching is I'm afforded insights that help me establish realistic objectives and trust with my students through their interpretations of problems and the artworks they create.  Classroom assignments that indulge my students’ imagination and allow for the translation of the individuals’ experiences offer opportunities for students to learn about their potential through the visual arts.  This can occur in any genre, using a variety of mediums or techniques that encourage students to offer their ideas and experiences to others in our program and myself.  The student’s responses can be driven by a formal lesson or may arise out of the personal need to create.  What is critical is that the response of the individual is found in the definition to the experience, not of it. Remember from adjudication, Risk equals REWARD!  
Dr. Bay (the ARTGUY) has shown his own work throughout the country and in Europe. he is represented in major museum and corporate collections. His current show: "Stuff and Art Too! Will open May25, 2013 in Lucas, Kansas as part of the Grassroots Art Museum Summer Festival.
What you can bring: You imagination and a willingness to GO OUTSIDE THE BOX! My class is a way of looking at materials and what you create in new and innovative ways. Remember the artworld today is not about technique it is about innovation it is my hope by the end of our 4 weeks you will find fluency in a new language you create with all of us in the class. Bring any material you enjoy and like working with. However, please NO: Spray paint or any aerosols, heat guns or other electrical equipment, and any materials that need solvents to clean or activate them. PS: You may be surprised what you can do going "retro" with materials! One other thing: A sense of humor is highly encouraged!

Drew Dodson


Drew  Dodson is an associate professor of art at Radford University where he has taught for 10 years.

"Prior to coming to Radford University, I taught at Maine’s Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts in the art outreach program. Before I discovered my passion for teaching, I was fortunate to study with many talented art professors. They were strong role models for me, and they showed me how to use art as a means of self-expression. Everyday, I strive to help my students experience the joy and fulfillment of this self-expression through creating unique art in clay."

Alison Pack


Alison Pack’s work is based on telling stories through imagery that pursues stereotypes, misconceptions and clichés of womanhood. Often parts of the female anatomy morph with ordinary functional objects to create humorous fantasies with sexual overtones.  As a traditional southern girl, tools were considered inappropriate and unfeminine. Ironically, the development of her hand-skills through sawing, filing and forming proved to be powerful expressions of her femininity and sexuality as well as commemorative pieces enabling her to re-live some of her life experiences. Her small copper and sterling silver sculptures are created by the traditional metal working processes of shell forming, raising, and fabrication. She employs color on metal techniques using Prismacolor pencils and acrylic paints to allude to decorative surfaces such as fabric and icings.

Her work has been displayed nationally and recently was featured in “Refined VII: Inspiration” 2012, The Seventh Biennial Exhibition and Competition for Artists working in the metalworking and jewelry field, at Stephen F. Austin University. She also received a Juror award for the 25th annual Materials: Hard & Soft exhibition 2012 at the Greater Denton Arts Council, in Denton Texas. The Juror was Monica Moses, editor in chief of American Craft magazine. Also her work has been featured in several books, Humor in Craft, Art Jewelry Today 3, Art Jewelry Today 2 and About Art. She is an associate professor of metalsmithing and jewelry design at Radford University, where she has been since 2003. She is included in Who’s Who Among American Teachers and Educators.  She is an active member of the Society of North American Goldsmiths and the Southwest Virginia Metal Arts Guild. She holds a BS in art education with teaching certification form Appalachian State University and an MFA in metalsmithing from East Tennessee State University.

Instrumental Music Faculty

Robert Glarner


Dr. Robert Glarner is currently an associate professor of music theory at Radford University. He teaches courses in undergraduate theory, aural skills, and composition. He is also an active organ recitalist and composer. Dr. Glarner has taught at Central Connecticut State University, University of Texas - El Paso, Middlebury College, SUNY-Albany, and Williams College. Dr. Glarner received his Ph.D. in Music Theory from the University of Arizona, a Master's in Theory and Composition from the University of Wyoming, and a Bachelor's of Music in Dalcroze Eurhythmics from the Cleveland Institute of Music.

Kristopher Hale


Kristopher Hale is a native of Roanoke, Virginia. Currently a adjunct professor of music at both Radford University and Lynchburg College, he also teaches guitar and music theory privately throughout the New River Valley and Roanoke areas.

Kristopher began playing guitar at the age of 9 and won first place in a composition contest at age 13. Hale received a Bachelor of Music, magna cum laude in 2003 and a Master of Arts in music in 2005 with a concentration in guitar performance from Radford University. During his five years at Radford University, he studied with critically acclaimed guitarist Robert Trent, the first recipient of a Doctor of Musical Arts in guitar performance from Peabody Conservatory. While a student there, he was honored with scholarships and awards including a graduate teaching fellowship from 2004 to 2005 and three honors recital Nominations from the faculty. For the 2002-2003 academic year he received the RU Senior Excellence Award and appeared on the National Dean’s List. He has been inducted into the Theta Mu chapter of Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honors Society, Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society, and the Alpha Zeta chapter of Mu Phi Epsilon, a professional music fraternity. Hale was a founding member of the Southwestern Virginia Classical Guitar Society at Radford University and served as its president from 2003 to 2005. Fender Musical Instruments awarded him a scholarship to attend Duquesne University’s 2002 Guitar Workshop. He also received a scholarship to the St. Joseph International Guitar Festival at Missouri Western State College in 2003 and was a semifinalist in the guitar competition at the same festival the following year.

After college, Hale was appointed professor of music and director of guitar studies at Emory & Henry College in Virginia from 2005-2008. Hale has performed widely and received personal instruction from world-renowned guitarists including David Russell, Lily Afshar, Vincent Airault, Anthony Glise, Christopher Berg and Carlo Barone, among others. 

Nitza Kats


Pianist Nitza Kats is a graduate of the Rubin Academy of Music in Jerusalem, Israel, where she earned her Teaching Certificate and Artist Diploma, studying with Sonya Vallin and Pnina Salzman. During her studies there she won scholarships from the American-Israel Cultural Fund, a foundation supporting young Israeli musicians. Ms. Kats continued her education at the University of Minnesota under Professor Bernhard Weiser, where she earned a Master of Fine Arts degree, majoring in piano performance. Additional private studies were with Nadia Reisenberg, Leson Fleisher, Malcolm Bilson, Leonard Shure and Clifton Matthews, among others. Ms. Kats has performed extensively in solo recitals and chamber music concerts both in Israel (including the public radio) and the United States, in particular Minnesota, New York, North Carolina, Wisconsin, West Virginia and around Virginia.

Her long pedagogic career includes teaching in Jerusalem (at the Rubin Academy of Music) and in Haifa, Israel, at the University of Minnesota, at the Department of Music at Virginia Tech, and currently at the Department of Music at Radford University. In 1993 she was awarded a grant from the Center for Academic Enrichment at Radford University to perform and participate in the “In Search of Chopin” Festival, in Paris and in Nohant-La Châtre, France, and to attend the first annual Piano Festival of the French Piano Institute in Paris, studying the history of French pianism at the Ecole Normal De Musique de Paris. Ms. Kats has presented various workshops in Israel and in the United States and has served as an adjudicator in the National Guild of Piano Teachers, the Virginia Music Teachers Association’s Fall Festival, the VMTA Collegiate Artist Competition, the Bland Music Scholarship Contest and the International Bartók-Kabalevsky-Prokofiev Piano Competition, among other events.

Many of her students were winners or finalists in various competitions, including the Rebecca Orr Memorial Technique Festival, the Virginia Lion’s Bland Music Scholarship Contest, the Lynchburg Fine Arts Center Piano Competition, the International Bartók-Kabalevsky-Prokofiev Piano Competition, and the Virginia Music Teachers Association concerto Competition.

Jeffrey L. Kresge


Jeffrey L. Kresge received his Master of Music in trumpet performance from Boston Conservatory and Bachelor's degree in music education from SUNY at Fredonia. He is a co-founder and principal trumpet of the Roanoke Chamber Brass Quintet. He is currently a member of the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra, principal trumpet of the Shenandoah Symphony Orchestra and has performed with the Lynchburg and Charleston (WV) orchestras as well as Opera Roanoke. He was an educator with the Roanoke City School system for ten years, having taught band and orchestra programs for grades 4-12. Jeff currently serves as adjunct professor of trumpet at both Radford and Hollins universities and also enjoys freelance work throughout southwestern Virginia.

Dr. Christopher K. White


Dr. Christopher K. White is currently director of the Jazz Ensemble and instructor of music education and saxophone at Radford University in Virginia. Previously he served as professor of instrumental music at Dodge City Community College (KS) where he directed the jazz groups, wind Eesemble, and taught woodwinds and jazz history. Past positions include director of bands (5-12) for the Waterville (ME) Public Schools, head of jazz Aativities for the Maine Music Educators Association, director of bands and instructor of saxophone and jazz improvisation at Colby College in Waterville, Maine, lecturer in music pedagogy, music business and woodwinds at the University of Maine, Augusta, director of music programs for the Boston University/ Chelsea (MA) Schools Project, director of bands and head of music education at Rocky Mountain College (MT), and associate director of jazz groups and instructor ofsSaxophone at the University of Louisiana - Lafayette. He holds a Bachelor of Music in saxophone performance from California State University, Northridge, and a Master of Music in instrumental conducting from the University of Southwestern Louisiana and a Ph.D in curriculum and instruction from Kansas State University.

Christopher has studied arranging and improvisation with Ladd McIntosh and Hank Levy and has performed with Cheryl Bentyne, Dionne Warwick, Ben E. King, Lou Christie, Leslie Gore, the Temptations, the Spinners, Ringling Brothers Circus, the Stan Kenton Orchestra and was active in the studio and club scenes in Los Angeles and Boston. He has recorded four albums as a solo artist or director including the recently released "Old Friends – Together Again" with guitarist Tom Hoffmann, and "In My Own Sweet Time," which was released on the ARC label in December 2011.

As a woodwind specialist, Dr. White has studied saxophone with Kenneth Radnofsky, Ladd McIntosh and William Calkins; flute with John Heitman, Angelita Floyd and Andrea Loewy; and clarinet with Charles Bay and J. Roger Cole. Christopher has also studied conducting with Lukas Foss, David Whitwell, Allan McMurray and Robert Spevacek. He has performed with orchestras throughout the nation including the Baton Rouge Symphony, Billings Symphony and Los Angeles Philharmonic Institute Orchestra.

As an educator, Dr. White has sent students to the Interlochen Arts Academy, Oberlin, Hartt and New England Conservatories, New School and Manhattan Schools of Music and numerous universities throughout the country as both education and performance majors. Christopher has many former students enjoying careers as both educators and performers with such groups as the U.S. Military Bands and the Philip Glass Ensemble.

Professor White’s educational philosophy is direct and simple: “I believe in developing thinking, feelingful musicians, not only skilled performers but literate communicators able to share their joy and passion. It is essential that I engage them in finding their own musical voice.” Christopher continues to be active as a clinician and performer, presenting workshops in jazz studies, improvisation, program building, student leadership and conducting. He lives in Christiansburg, Virginia, with his wife Rochelle and daughters Kathryn, McKenzie and Brianna.

Vocal Music Faculty

Dr. David Otis Castonguay


Dr. David Otis Castonguay is professor of music at Radford University. University choirs under him perform throughout the eastern region of the United States. The university choirs also regularly perform with professional orchestras including performances of Beethoven MissaSolemnis, Beethoven 9th Symphony, Brahms EinDeutches Requiem, DurufléRequiem, the Dvorak Te Deum, Orff’sCarminaBurana and Verdi Requiem.

Castonguay has conducted festival choirs throughout the United States and has presented workshops for the American Choral Directors Association and the Music Educators National Conference. Educated at the University of Connecticut and continuing with doctoral studies at the University of Illinois Castonguay held faculty positions at Bemidji State University (Minnesota), the University of Connecticut and Spaulding High School in Barre, Vermont. Castonguay’s choirs have toured Russia, Israel and most of Europe. Castonguay continues to serve as a juror and master class clinician for three international choral competitions: Christmas in Russia held in Ekaterinburg, Russia and the Martinu Festival in Pardubice, Czech Republic and the Cornwall International Male Choir Festival in Truro, United Kingdom. Castonguay returned to Russia in September of 2010 on a U.S. State Department Fulbright and McGlothlen Foundation grant presenting master classes and public concerts with university and professional choirs in the cities of Ryazan, Izhevsk, and Ekaterinburg. Professor Castonguay is also a soloist in recital and oratorio performing annual recitals of art songs. He studied voice and vocal literature in private lessons with distinguished American singers Blake Stern and William Warfield, as well as master classes with international singing stars EllyAmeling, Arleen Auger and Sherrill Milnes. Castonguay has a strong interest in contemporary music. He has premiered works by Milton Babbitt, Ned Rorem and Charles Whittenberg. Castonguay has also been selected to appear as a member of the Robert Shaw Festival Singers. Castonguay performs solo voice recitals and presents master classes in vocal technique, solo vocal literature and song interpretation.

As a scholar, Castonguay’s articles on choral music, choral techniques and literature are published in professional journals in the US. Castonguay has published hundreds of editions of Renaissance, Baroque, Classical and Romantic choral music by Brahms, Byrd, Gesualdo, Handel, Haydn, Ockeghem, Monteverdi, Schubert and dozens of other composers. Over the past few years Castonguay has been studying the manuscripts of Igor Stravinsky’s Les Noces (Svadebka) which are held in the British Library in London and The Paul SacherStifftung in Basel, Switzerland. His new edition fixes the hundreds of errors found in the published score of this landmark ballet for four pianos, choir and percussion. Castonguay’s new edition will be published during the summer of 2011 by MusicaRussica in the United States.

Most of Castonguay’s professional career has focused on training generations of new choral conductors. He has concentrated on developing classroom materials to enhance the education of new musicians. In 2008 he published an innovative computer program to promote music literacy through individualized sight singing training Student Initiated Sight Singing. Due to its ease of use SISS gained wide acceptance and has been adopted for use by scores of school systems in Virginia and New England. A vastly enhanced program, SISS Version II was released in September of 2010. In 2011 he will publish a new computer program designed to revolutionize ear training and error detection training for young choral conductors.

Theatre Faculty

David Jennings


David Jennings is an accomplished singer, actor, dancer, writer, and producer, with an established career that spans stage, television, film, and recordings. His Broadway credits include the recent production of HANDS ON A HARDBODY, the original company of ONCE UPON A MATTRESS with Sarah Jessica Parker, BROOKLYN THE MUSICAL, and THE GENIUS OF RAY CHARLES on London's West End.  David also appeared as Coalhouse in RAGTIME, John in MISS SAIGON, Curtis Taylor, Jr. in the revival of DREAMGIRLS opposite Ms. Jennifer Holliday, and MOTOWN SALUTE TO BERRY GORDY with Stevie Wonder and Smokey Robinson.  His screen credits include guest starring on the F/X television show "The Shield," NBC's "The Tonight Show" and the films "The Sleepless" and "Burning Sands." David was nominated for a Grammy Award for the 30th Anniversary Recording of AIN'T MISBEHAVIN and is a voting member of the Grammys. David trained at the internationally acclaimed Indiana University School of Music and studied pop music with Los Angeles Vocal Coach to the stars, Seth Riggs.  David is founder of the Singers Boot Camp vocal school in New York, is a former staff member of the Vibe Performing Arts School in Los Angeles, was Vocal Coach for THE GENIUS OF RAY CHARLES, and has provided private vocal and theatre training to some of entertainment's top recording and stage performers for over a decade. Find out more about him at www.davidjenningsmusic.biz

Lucinda McDermott


Lucinda McDermott is an actor, playwright, musician, director, and teaching artist. Acting roles include Georgia O’Keeffe in O’KEEFFE!, a one-person play she has written and premiered Off-Broadway, toured around the country, in Bermuda and Mexico. Other NYC credits include the MAC award winning THOU SWELL, THOU WITTY, THOU ROGERS AND HART, Gussie in LYDIE BREEZE, Thaisa in PERICLES, Natalya in THREE SISTERS. Regional performances include May, FOOL FOR LOVE at VA Rose Theatre. Miss Watson in  BIG RIVER,  Mrs. Bailey in A WONDERFUL LIFE, and various roles in the world premieres of THE DREAM TIME, ELVIS PEOPLE, MAGIC TO DO all at Mill Mountain Theatre.  Coach in THE SECRET LIFE OF GIRLS, and Mrs. Pinkerton in PINKALICIOUS with Roanoke Children’s Theatre; Lillie St Regis in ANNIE, and Rosemary in HOW TO SUCCEED… both at Haymarket Dinner Theatre. She has toured with Theatre IV and Celebrity Cruises, done numerous independent films, TV, commercials, voice overs. Playwriting credits other than O’KEEFFE! include FEEDING ON MULBERRY LEAVES,  RUMPUS ROOM, BRICKS, COURAGE BY THE SEA, SHATTER THE VESSEL, A MOST SILENT TRAIN, IN YOUR FACE, TAKE OUT, BETTING ON SERENTIY, DEAR VIVIAN AND RACHEL, and others which have been produced around the country. Directing credits include THE VAGINA MONOLOGUES (four productions); THE ICE WOLF, VANITIES, DARK AT THE TOP OF THE STAIRS, all at Radford University; THE INFERNO, Chrysler Museum of Art in Norfolk; CARR PARKED SIDEWAYS, Mill Mountain Youth Theatre. Teaching experience includes K—12 as an artist in residence in various municipalities, and as a Teaching Fellow with the NC A+ School Programs. She has taught at UVA, Hampton Univ., Arcadia Univ., Radford Univ., VA Tech, VCU, and Washington & Lee Univ. Lucinda lives in Radford where she and her husband play music as the americana duo Ball & Chain (www.ballnchainmusic.com). She is a member of Actors Equity Association and the Dramatists Guild of America. Lucinda holds a BFA in acting from VCU., and a MFA in Playwriting from the UVA. She studied acting in NYC with Michael Moriarty and at HB Studios.  Some of her plays are published with Playscripts, Inc. at www.playscripts.com, and Dramatic Publishing. www.LucindaMcDermott.com

Aaron Mowles


Aaron Mowles, a native of Chesapeake, VA, is excited to be leading the Improv Ensemble Workshop because his own Governor’s School experience as a student was so positive. Aaron just received his degree in theatre from Radford University where he focused on performance, stage combat, physical theatre, and improvisation. Major roles while at RU included Hysterium in A FUNNY THING…FORUM, Kip in LIFE UNDER WATER, Benvolio in ROMEO AND JULIET, Lou in SPEED OF DARKNESS, Howie in RABBIT HOLE. He has also worked professionally at the Jenny Wiley Theatre in Kentucky. Aaron is a well-rounded rounded theatre artist with experience in all aspects of the medium including technical theatre. This will be his third consecutive year as a counselor at Governor’s School in Radford.

Melissa Rayford


Melissa Rayford is happy to join the Summer Governor's School program at Radford University and have the opportunity to work with Virginia's next generation of talented artists. She is a director from Richmond, Virginia, whose directing credits include RABBIT HOLE, WIT, and TROJANS (nominated for the Richmond Theatre Critic's Choice Best Local Production award). Melissa has also assistant directed many shows including AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY, THE PILLOWMAN, COMEDY OF ERRORS and THE TEMPEST. This fall she will be directing THE ODD COUPLE (Female Version) at Chamberlain Actor's Theatre. “Mess” also has a background in acting, having performed with various theatres in Richmond as well Radford University where she received her degree in theatre. She is no stranger to Gov. School, having been the assistant to the Director of the School of Visual and Performing Arts in 2010.