Dr. Leslie J. Blackwell, director of choral activities and professor of music and music education, celebrates 19 years with Kennesaw State’s School of Music.
Influenced by her piano teacher, Dr. Mary Jean Simmons and Robert Shaw, an American conductor, Dr. Blackwell’s musical expertise has provided inspiration to many of the students at the School of Music.
In 2015, she was honored with a scholarship in her name by an alumnus of the School of Music. The Dr. Leslie J. Blackwell Annual Scholarship in Choral Music awards a $2,000 scholarship to one full-time student pursuing a bachelor of music in music education with a concentration on choral music each semester.
“To be a musician, you have to work hard and practice religiously,” Dr. Blackwell said. “Celebrate the Music.”
Dr. Blackwell’s accomplishments include a rare back-to-back invitational in 2013. She coordinated the choral performance of the KSU Chamber Singers at the National Collegiate Choral Organization as well as that of the Men’s Ensemble at the American Choral Directors Association National Conference, the premier choral organization of the U.S.
In January 2018, the KSU Chamber Singers are scheduled to perform at the Georgia Music Educators Association in Athens, Georgia.
“Ultimately as a director, I work on creating magic, taking the audience beyond the notes into an emotional journey through the music,” Dr. Blackwell said.
Dr. Blackwell’s current project involves preparing her students and fellow alumni for the School of Music’s 10th-anniversary celebration of the Dr. Bobbie Bailey and Family Performance Center that will take place on Saturday, Oct. 7, and Sunday, Oct. 8.
“The Dr. Bobbie Bailey Center changed peoples’ lives and the face of the School of Music.” Dr. Blackwell said.
This tremendous benchmark will hold multiple performances including choral events coordinated by Dr. Blackwell, who will conduct the Chamber Singers, Chorale and the Alumni Chorus for the Beethoven’s “Choral Fantasy” performance.