Featured Alumni: Heather Roberts

Heather Roberts graduated in December of 2019 with a Music major and an Education minor. She is now the current Choir Director for the Kewaunee School District teaching 4K and 5th-12th grade choral music.

Why did you decide to major in Music? Music was the field I had always pursued. It was simply a matter of which direction in the field to take. It was/is the craft I am fiercely passionate about; a place to grow, teach, perform, and learn (always learning.)

What academic experience or accomplishment are you most proud of?  I’ve had so many wonderful experiences, it’s difficult to choose just one! However, I am most proud of having the opportunity to conduct a choral piece with the UWGB Concert Choir at the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts. It was incredible!

The rehearsal process was one of constant learning, mentorship and guidance from my mentor/director. I gained new insight to the profession and the conducting craft. Although the moment and musical connection in that concert were fleeting, that solid sense of belonging in a choral group and being a part of something larger than myself through music will never go away.

What is an important goal or accomplishment you are currently working on? Currently, I am working on ways to stay organized, calm, and provide a quality choral education for all of my students! My goal is to continue to be there for them during these difficult times, lifting their spirits and keeping the passion for music alive. If there is ever a time where we need the arts, it is right now. My students are the ones who keep me going, and coming in to work every day. I strive to keep going, keep showing up for their sake, mine and the sake of the craft! Music doesn’t stop. Neither should we.

What do you do for fun? When I’m not teaching/working on music, I read novels, practice yoga, occasionally knit my own scarves, and ballroom dance. Ballroom dancing is a stress reliever, another form of expression. There is always something to learn and to improve on!

The most interesting part about this activity is music takes on a different role. As a life-long learner of music, it’s interesting for music to take the backseat, if you will. Although it is a crucial element amongst the different dances themselves, music is not the sole focus, much as it is in my profession. It’s refreshing to become a spectator to the music once again, in lieu of being the producer of the sound!

What else do you want people to know about you? Although, I am first and foremost a choral director, I have a passion for all music (choral AND instrumental.) In order for programs to succeed, there must be advocates for both, and each requires a tremendous deal of time, passion and perseverance to be done well.

I don’t believe in choral VS. instrumental, rather choral AND instrumental. Both instrumentalists and vocalists are considered musicians. That’s why I pursued multiple music education licenses. I couldn’t bear the thought of choosing one over the other!

Lastly, this is my favorite quote which I have followed/shared a great deal throughout my life, and it is this:

“To play a wrong note is insignificant; to play without passion is inexcusable.”

-Ludwig Van Beethoven

If we don’t have something we are passionate about, what do we have to offer to the world? What do we have to fight for?

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