2013 was full of exciting moments for me. Here’s a summary of the most noteworthy happenings/accomplishments in my life this past year, in no particular order.
1. Comedy of Errors with Summer Shakespeare
This year was my third time being in a Shakespearean comedy with the Greenville Shakespeare Company. And this year, I also wrote the original music cues for the production. You can listen to some of the sound clips.
2. Performance at Piccolo Spoleto Festival
I sang with the Rivertree Singers at the annual Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC this summer. My own piece, Jubilate Deo, was on the program and got good reviews.
3. Wrote some hymns
I started out the year by writing a few new hymn tunes for general use. It was both a writing exercise for me as well as a means of creating material for possible future arrangements. One hymn tune was MACKEY, for the text “If You Will Only Let God Guide You.” First Baptist Church of Lebanon, PA commissioned it to honor their senior pastor on the occasion of his retirement. It’s now been inserted into every one of their hymnals for them to sing in the future.
4. Remixed Eric Whitacre’s VC4 song, “Fly to Paradise”
Perhaps the most unexpected happening this year might have been the notoriety that resulted from crafting a remix of “Fly to Paradise” which caught the eye (and ears) of the composer himself, Eric Whitacre.
5. Christmas concerts with Rivertree Singers
Always a highlight of the Christmas season, the Rivertree Singers gave two concerts in Greenville (at Daniel Chapel on Furman’s campus and 2nd Presbyterian downtown) and one evening of music for guests at the Biltmore house.
6. Best of Conference presentation at HighEdWeb 2013
I went to Buffalo, NY to attend and present at a conference for higher education web professionals. Out of 70+ presentations in 6 different tracks, mine was voted Best in Conference by peer evaluations. A very prestigious honor in my industry, the award has resulted in a lot of additional attention to my work and that of my talented coworkers at BJU, particularly our work with Responsive Web Design.
7. Launched the new BJU.edu
After several months of planning, designing, programming, writing, and testing, our office launched the latest redesign of BJU.edu on December 16th – just in time to enjoy a relaxing Christmas break. Here’s some of the technical details behind-the-scenes for those interested.
8. Helped create two award-winning mini-sites
Two other mini-sites that our office created this year (LIFEatBJU and Why Choose BJU) won a total of seven eduStyle design awards this year once again bringing extra attention to the work we’re doing at BJU.
9. Emceed weddings for the third and fourth time
As a musician, you expect to get asked to play for weddings with some frequency. But, after a friend’s wedding this summer and my brother’s wedding this fall, somehow I’ve managed to emcee more wedding receptions than weddings I’ve played for…
10. Horsed around for Faculty Body
This is just a goofy one, but doing comedic sketches for a few thousand students, faculty, staff, and friends at school is pretty memorable.
11. Ran my first 10K
I took up jogging for exercise a year and a half ago and have now run a 5K and a 10K. My (somewhat ambitious) goal time was 1:00:00. I ended up crossing the finish line at 1:00:45… close enough.
Now, I’m looking forward to 2014 in which I will:
- Have the most prestigious choral performance of my life thus far
- More than double the number of pieces of music I have in print (more on that soon…)
- Act in a comedy (or two)
- Build a website worthy of a Webby Award
- Run a half-marathon