Music

Students who are a part of Simpson University's music department are prepared for careers in music ministry, music education, and music performance. The music department also serves the greater community through performance opportunities and cultural enrichment. Visit simpsonu.edu/musicevents to view a list of upcoming concerts.

The Music Department is characterized by highly skilled and caring educators, who are passionate about music and about our students’ holistic development.

To apply for a music scholarship, through audition with the Music Department, please complete the Entrance Scholarship Application. During the application process, each applicant should work closely with an admission counselor to apply, prepare for the audition, and set up a time to visit campus.

Music Department Mission

To develop musicians through comprehensive study of the musical enterprise and to prepare students for professions or graduate studies in music ministry, music education, composition or performance. The music department also serves the greater community through performance opportunities and cultural enrichment.

Simpson University's Music major is designed to provide professional preparation for a number of musically related professions: composition, performance (voice, piano, or another instrument), and worship ministry. You can also receive a Music Liberal Arts Emphasis degree. This major is designed for students who would like to pursue a music degree but are not seeking preparation for the music professions of performance or church music.

Composition

A professional degree designed for students with strong theoretical and compositional skills who wish to become professional composers or theorists and continue their education at the graduate level.

Performance

A professional degree designed for students with strong performance skills who wish to become professional musicians, college and university teachers, or private studio teachers.

Worship Ministries

A professional degree designed for students who wish to assume positions of leadership as musicians in the Church and to continue their ministry preparation at the graduate level.

Music Liberal Arts

A professional degree designed for students who would like to pursue a music degree with a broader liberal arts emphasis and more elective options.

Dan Pinkston, D.M.A.

Professor of Theory and Composition
Music Department Chair

dpinkston@simpsonu.edu
530-226-4721

Profile:

Prior to coming to Simpson in 2001, Dr. Dan Pinkston taught music at Dallas Baptist University and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Born to missionary parents, he grew up in the Ivory Coast, returning to the U.S. to attend college and graduate school.

Dan has published many original works and won numerous composition awards, including annual ASCAPPlus awards for composition from 2000-2007. In 2010, his first commissioned symphony ("Symphony No. 1") was performed by the North State Symphony in Chico and Redding, Calif. A longtime fan of the band U2, Dan presented a paper exploring parallels between U2 and 20th century composer Igor Stravinsky at an international U2 conference in 2009. 2012 saw the premier of Pinkston's "Symphony No. 2," a commission by the Shasta Symphony Orchestra.

Dan is also the composer of Simpson's official university hymn, “Lead Us, O Lord.”

Dan and his wife, Lori, have two daughters. Dan is also an avid runner who regularly competes in triathlons.

Educational Background:

  • D.M.A., Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
  • M.A., Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
  • B.A., Ouachita Baptist University

Courses Taught:

  • Music Theory
  • Composition
  • Technology
  • Worship Leading

Links:

Dwayne Corbin, D.M.A.

Associate Professor of Instrumental Music

dcorbin@simpsonu.edu
530-226-4175

Profile:

Conductor, percussionist, and educator are three ways Dr. Corbin has proven himself to be a successful and integral part of Northern California’s music community. As conductor of the Shasta Symphony Orchestra he has led inspiring and often sold-out traditional orchestral concerts, as well as pops, chamber music, and choral/orchestra events. He has commissioned and premiered four new works for orchestra from local and mid-west composers, has grown the orchestra and its funding, and continues to position the Shasta Symphony as a key educational/artistic organization in Shasta County and the surrounding region. He also serves as the Resident Conductor of the North State Symphony, a regional professional orchestra, as well as the 2014-2015 Assistant Conductor of the Juneau Symphony.

Dr. Corbin is Associate Professor of Instrumental Music at Simpson University, responsible for the Percussion Ensemble, Applied Percussion, conducting courses, and world music. In the past, Dr. Corbin conducted ensembles at Wheaton College and the University of Cincinnati, in addition to directing the Cincinnati Youth Wind Ensemble. Dr. Corbin regularly adjudicates regional festivals, gives clinics to regional schools, and guest conducts ensembles such as the Juneau Wind Ensemble in 2013 and the Southern Oregon University Symphonic Band in 2010. In 2007, he led the University of Cincinnati Chamber Players as part of the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensemble conference in Killarney, Ireland. In addition to his work at the college/university level, Dr. Corbin also taught public school band in the greater Seattle and Chicago areas.

Corbin has held the position of Principal Percussionist in the North State Symphony since 2006, regularly presents jazz and classical recitals, and has played percussion on internationally- released albums such as Kim Walker Smith’s 2012 CD Still Believe. Dr. Corbin’s composition Cage for One won first place in the 2009 Percussive Arts Society composition contest and is published by C. F. Peters. He performed a suite of 1920’s xylophone rags with the Juneau Symphony in June 2011, after studying with percussion master Bob Becker. Since 2011, Dr. Corbin and his wife, Caryn, have led the Shasta Percussion Workshop, a summer percussion immersion experience for high school and college students.

Corbin earned a Doctorate of Musical Arts in conducting from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, a Masters of Music in percussion performance from Central Washington University, and a Bachelor’s of Music Education from Wheaton College. He resides in Redding, Calif., with his wife and their two sons, Andrew and Peter.

Educational Background:

  • D.M.A., University of Cincinnati
  • M.M., Central Washington University
  • B.M.E., Wheaton College

Courses Taught:

  • Conducting
  • Applied Percussion
  • World Music

Links:

Cyril A. Myers, D.M.A.

Assistant Professor of Choral Music

cmyers@simpsonu.edu
530-226-4952

Profile:

Dr. Cyril A. Myers Jr., the Director of Choral Studies, directs both the select Simpson Chorale and the Trinity Repertory Singers, a community chorus. Meyers also teaches classes within the Music Department. Holding degrees from Andrews University, Western Michigan University, and a Doctorate of Musical Arts in Choral Conducting from Michigan State University, the multi-talented singer, conductor, and educator has participated in music performances nationally and internationally for the past 25 years.

Over the course of his career Dr. Myers has taught elementary through collegiate choral and instrumental ensembles, classroom music, community choirs and professional choirs. Before joining the Simpson Faculty, Dr. Myers taught as Voice Faculty at Southwestern Michigan College where he coached the choirs and taught vocal dictation and music appreciation. Other academic appointments have included Walla Walla University and Indiana University Purdue University in Ft. Wayne, IN. As a master teacher his students have won awards associated with NATS, Metropolitan Opera, and Seattle Opera. He has been invited to music adjudicating, clinics, coaching, master-classes, and presentations world-wide.

As a singer Dr. Myers is an alumnus of Oregon Bach Festival Chorus, Male Ensemble Northwest, Gaechinger Kantorei in Stuttgart, Germany, and the Dogwood Chorale. A versatile low bass baritone, his solo singing style includes opera, oratorio, art songs, spirituals, and jazz.

Educational Background:

  • D.M.A., Michigan State University (DMA in Choral Conducting)
  • M. M., Western Michigan University (M. Mus in Choral Conducting)
  • B.M.A., Andrews University (B. Mus. Vocal Performance)

Courses Taught:

  • Music History

 

Lois J. Nichols, M.M.

Assistant Professor of Music

lnichols@simpsonu.edu
530-226-4159

Profile:

Lois Nichols has a passion for music literacy through education and performance. In addition to being a music instructor and giving piano lessons at Simpson University, she also has her own private studio of piano students and does extensive accompanying for solo and ensemble recitals (both instrumental and vocal).

Lois plays with the worship team at Neighborhood Church in Redding, serves as accompanist for the community choir Trinity Repertory Singers, and has played for rehearsals and performances of the Northstar Opera Repertory Theater in Redding. She and her husband, Tim, have three sons, who all graduated from Simpson.

Educational Background:

  • M.M., Kansas State University
  • B.M., Wichita State University

Courses Taught:

  • Piano
  • Children's Music
  • Introduction to Music
  • Handbell Choir

Cleveland Bonéy

 

Adjunct Professor of Music

cboney@simpsonu.edu

Profile:

Cleveland Bonéy

Educational Background:


Courses Taught:

  • Jazz Ensemble

Kendra Davis, M.M.

 

Adjunct Professor of Music

kweick@simpsonu.edu

Profile:

Kendra Davis has a passion to see lives enriched and enhanced through music and music studies. In addition to teaching classes at Simpson, Mrs. Davis has a private studio of over 25 Suzuki violin students. She is also a member of the North State Symphony. Before moving to Redding in 2010, Mrs. Davis (Weike) was the Suzuki Program Coordinator for the Community School of the Arts in Storrs, Connecticut and a member of the Eastern Connecticut Symphony. Kendra is also a member of the worship team at Bethel Church and enjoys playing chamber music.


Educational Background:

  • M.M., University of Hartford
  • B.M., University of Denver

Courses Taught:

  • Intro to Music
  • Children's Music

Links:

JennyRebecca Winans, M.M.

 

Adjunct Professor

jwinans@simpsonu.edu

Profile:

JennyRebecca Winans is a professional opera singer, composer and voice/drama teacher. She was a Teaching Artist for the Metropolitan Opera of New York City, co-founder of the City Youth Opera Theater of New York, Vocal Instructor for the Lyric Opera of Kansas City’s High School Honors Artists Program, and has performed internationally, receiving favorable reviews from the New York Times and Opera News magazines. Ms. Winans earned her Master of Music and Professional Artist Diploma from the Manhattan School of Music in New York, New York. She has written the music and lyrics to over 400 songs, has worked and lived in Berlin, Lithuania and Florence, and is currently living in Redding working as an adjunct professor at Simpson University.

Educational Background:

  • Artist Diploma, Manhattan School of Music
  • M.M,. Manhaan School of Music
  • B.M., DePauw University

Courses Taught:

  • Studio Class Vocal
  • Private Vocal Instruction

Links:

  • Artistic synthesis: Students will be able to relate a wide range of music proficiencies to a culminating or capstone artistic endeavor.
  • Performance skill

Ensembles

Vocal Ensembles

Chorale

Directed by Dr. Cyril Myers, is an auditioned mixed ensemble specializing in advanced vocal and choral techniques and standard choral repertoire. Chorale is the touring vocal group of the university and travels in the U.S. and abroad. Past tours have visited England, France, Germany, Belgium, Spain, Switzerland, and West Africa.

Trinity Repertory Singers

Directed by Dr. Cyril Myers, is a community chorus sponsored and hosted by Simpson University. It is open to all Simpson students, faculty, and staff as well as community members. Repertoire includes a variety of chorale literature, but focuses primarily on the performance of large scale choral works. Trinity performs in conjunction with the Shasta Symphony Orchestra and Chorale.

Instrumental Ensembles

The Shasta Symphony Orchestra

The Shasta Symphony Orchestra is a collaboration between Shasta College and Simpson University and is conducted by Dr. Dwayne Corbin, assistant professor of instrumental music at Simpson. It consists of students from both institutions, as well as musicians from within the community. The mission of the Shasta Symphony Orchestra is to help students reach their artistic and educational goals by providing them with a challenging and successful performance experience, and to contribute to the overall enrichment of the arts programs within the Redding community.

Jazz Ensemble

Directed by Cleveland Bonéy, is open to all Simpson students by audition. The Jazz Consort performs on a regular basis throughout the year, and tours across the West Coast.

Wind Ensemble

Directed by Ruth Polcari, is comprised of Simpson students of any major. The group performs a variety of quality repertoire, from traditional band music, to twenty-first century compositions, to the classic chamber wind music of Mozart and Beethoven.

Percussion Ensemble

Directed by Dr. Dwayne Corbin, is open to all students. PE performs classic percussion literature, world music, and mallet ensembles, as well as combines with other instrumentalists or vocalists to present percussion-oriented twentieth-century masterworks.

Handbell Choir

Directed by Lois Nichols, consists of up to 11 students ringing a three octave set of handbells. Open to Simpson students who have no prior handbell experience.  Performance opportunities include a small ensemble concert, chapel, and local church functions.

Audition Requirements

Auditions are required for admission into all ensembles. Auditions are held during Orientation Weekend or prior to the beginning of the semester. An alternate day may be scheduled with the ensemble director. Contact the individual ensemble director for audition requirements.