CSU Stanislaus to Host Blind Alumna Soprano

Courtesy of California State University, Stanislaus|

Talented California State University, Stanislaus alumna Rachel Grider will perform a recital of 19th-century Russian songs and arias in the Bernell and Flora Snider Music Recital Hall at 7:30 p.m. March 14. Included in the performance will be works by Cui, Glinka, Rachmaninoff, Rimsky-Korsakv and Tchaikovsky.

“I think if more people knew about these works, more people would sing them,” Grider said. “These songs have a lot of beautiful text painting. Even though the lyrics are in Russian, you can hear what’s happening in the music – the burning of a letter or the sound of a waterfall.”

Grider’s passion for music and desire to help others has propelled her to strive for excellence in spite of hardship. Although she is blind, she has built a successful academic and professional career, and only continues to grow as a performer.

“Even when I am faced with challenges, I can find new opportunities to grow and learn,” she said. “I feel quite accomplished now that the faculty who gave me my first serious music education consider me a professional and have invited me back to give a vocal recital.”

Grider graduated from CSU Stanislaus in 2011 with degrees in vocal performance and composition. She went on to complete her master’s degrees in voice performance and music theory pedagogy at the Peabody Conservatory at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.

While still a student at CSU Stanislaus, Grider received the CSU Trustees’ Award for Outstanding Achievement as well as recognition as a Rogers Scholar. Her vocal prowess also gave her the opportunity to perform a leading role with the Townsend Opera of Modesto while only in her junior year.

Grider’s passion for Russian music was sparked in sixth grade when she bought an album of Rachmaninoff’s piano concertos. Her impending recital will feature some of the first songs that inspired her love for the genre.

Tickets – which are $12 for general admission and $8 for students, CSU faculty and staff, seniors and military – are available online at www.csustan.edu/music/calendar. Free parking will be available in Lot 3.

For more information, contact the School of the Arts at (209) 667-3959 or soa@csustan.edu.

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