Inaugural North Georgia Honor Orchestra
Friday and Saturday, October 20-21, 2017

The North Georgia Honor Orchestra is a new, unique event designed to bring together the most talented pre-college string instrumentalists in and around North Georgia to focus on developing advanced technical and musical skills under the guidance of the exceptional KSU School of Music faculty. The two-day event includes orchestral rehearsals and sectionals, a faculty recital, and other activities, culminating in a performance by the orchestra in KSU’s renowned Morgan Concert Hall.


Application deadline:
Wednesday, October 4, 2017
Participation fee: $60 per participant

  • The North Georgia Honor Orchestra is an event designed for advanced-level string instrumentalists. In order to ensure a positive experience, all applicants should be comfortable performing repertoire equivalent to LGPE Grade 6. If you are unsure whether this would be appropriate for your skill level, please ask for assistance from your orchestra director or private teacher.

    Applications are submitted entirely online. Applicants must submit all information required in the online form, including a link to a video of the applicant performing the required excerpt(s) for their instrument. Excerpts are available under the "Audition Materials" tab below. Videos should be uploaded to a video-sharing site, such as YouTube or Vimeo; if your video is password-protected, please be sure to include the password in your application form.

    The $60 participation fee is due at the time of application. In the event an applicant is not accepted for participation in the event, the participation fee—less a nominal administrative fee—will be refunded.

    Please click on the link below to apply for the North Georgia Honor Orchestra.

      APPLY NOW  

    Application deadline:
    Wednesday, October 4, 2017
    Participation fee:
    $60 per participant
  • Students accepted into the North Georgia Honor Orchestra are required to pay a $60 participation fee. This fee covers their entire experience, which includes:

    • Performance in KSU’s Morgan Hall
    • Performance in collaboration with the KSU Symphony Orchestra
    • Rehearsals and sectionals led by KSU faculty
    • Masterclasses
    • All necessary sheet music
    • Lunch on Friday and Saturday
    • Dinner on Saturday
    • Event t-shirt
    • Two complimentary tickets to the performance
    • Opportunity to audition for admission to the KSU School of Music and Music Scholarships at KSU (optional)
  • Applications and auditions for the North Georgia Honor Orchestra are submitted entirely online. Applicants must submit all information required in the online application form, including a link to a video of the applicant performing the required excerpt(s) for their instrument. Excerpts are available by clicking the link for your instrument below.

    Each applicant must create an audio or video recording of themselves performing the audition materials included below. Upload the recording of your performance to a public file sharing platform, such as YouTube, Vimeo, Dropbox, etc. Copy the entire "share" link for your performance recording and paste the URL into the audio/video submission field on the online application form. Videos should be set as "public" or, if your video is password-protected, please be sure to include the password in the "Additional information" field on the application form.

    View and download audition materials:

  • Sir Edward Elgar
    Serenade for Strings, Op. 20

    Antonio Vivaldi
    Concerto in F Minor, Op. 8, RV 297 “Winter” from “The Four Seasons”
    with Helen Kim, violin

    Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Finale from Serenade for Strings in C Major, Op. 48

    Camille Saint-Saëns
    Symphony No. 3 in C Minor, Op. 78 “Organ” (2nd half)
    with the KSU Symphony Orchestra

  • Friday, October 20, 2017
    8am – Arrival and registration (lobby, Bailey Performance Center, KSU)
    9am – Event begins (Morgan Concert Hall, Bailey Performance Center, KSU)
    5pm – End-of-day

    Saturday, October 21, 2017
    8am – Arrival
    9am – Day begins (Morgan Concert Hall, Bailey Performance Center, KSU)
    8pm – Performance begins (Morgan Concert Hall, Bailey Performance Center, KSU)

    A detailed schedule will be available in advance of the event.

  • Dr. Nathaniel Parker

    Dr. Nathaniel Parker, conductor
    Director of Orchestral Studies and Assistant Professor of Music

    A talented and dynamic musician, Nathaniel F. Parker joins the Kennesaw State University faculty as Interim Director of Orchestras and Assistant Professor of Music in the fall; he will also serve as Interim Conductor of the Georgia Youth Symphony Orchestra’s Symphony Orchestra. Equally at home working with professionals and training future generations of musicians, Dr. Parker has conducted orchestras in the United States, Peru, Russia, Poland, and the Czech Republic. His recent guest conducting engagements include appearances with the Jackson Symphony Orchestra (Michigan), the Connecticut Music Educators Association All-State Orchestra and the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association District 9 String Fest. Also an active scholar, Dr. Parker’s writings have been published by the Conductors Guild and the College Orchestra Directors Association (CODA). He has presented research at the College Orchestra Directors Association’s national and international conferences and currently serves as Editor of the Journal of the Conductors Guild. In 2015 he received a Citation of Excellence in Teaching from the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association.

    Prior to his appointment at Kennesaw State, Dr. Parker served as Director of Orchestral Activities and Assistant Professor of Music at Marywood University (Pennsylvania) where he was Music Director and Conductor of the Marywood University Orchestra and taught courses in conducting, instrumental methods, musicology, and analytical techniques. Other previous positions include Assistant Conductor and Production Manager of the Jackson Symphony Orchestra (Michigan), Music Director and Conductor of the Jackson Youth Symphony Orchestra, Director of the Jackson Symphony Orchestra Community Music School, Graduate Conducting Intern at Michigan State University, Music Director and Conductor of the Mason Orchestral Society’s Community Orchestra and Youth Symphony (Michigan), Assistant Director of Music at Xaverian High School (New York), Conductor of the New Music Festival of Sandusky Orchestra (Ohio), and Graduate Assistant Conductor and Teaching Assistant at Bowling Green State University (Ohio).

    Parker earned a Doctor of Musical Arts in Orchestral Conducting from Michigan State University, where his primary instructors were Leon Gregorian and Raphael Jiménez. He earned a Master of Music in Orchestral Conducting from Bowling Green State University, where he studied with Emily Freeman Brown; his other conducting mentors include Stephen Osmond, Gary W. Hill, and Timothy Russell. In addition to his training in academia, Dr. Parker participated in numerous conducting master classes and workshops, conducting orchestras under the tutelage of nationally and internationally renowned conductors and conducting pedagogues including Christoph Eschenbach, George Hurst, Arthur Fagen, Markand Thakar, Mark Gibson, David Itkin, Jorge Mester, and Paul Vermel. Parker began his collegiate education at Arizona State University, where he studied bassoon with Jeffrey G. Lyman and graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Music in Bassoon Performance.

    Nat resides in Woodstock with his wife, Melody, their son, Jacob, and their dog, Sammy.

    KSU Orchesta Invitational

    Prof. Helen Kim
    Professor of Violin

    Helen Kim joined the music faculty in 2006 at Kennesaw State University with a stellar performance background. She made her orchestral debut with the Calgary Philharmonic at the age of six, and has gone on to become a respected and sought-after artist. Read more

    She has appeared as a soloist with the Boston Pops at Boston's Symphony Hall, as well as with the Milwaukee and Atlanta Symphony Orchestras.

    Ms. Kim earned her Master's Degree from the Juilliard School, where her teachers included Cho-Liang Lin and Dorothy DeLay. She is the recipient of more than one hundred national and international awards. In 1992, she won the prestigious Artists International Competition in New York and, as a result, gave debut recitals at Carnegie Weill Hall and the Aspen Summer Music Festival.

    A native of Canada, Ms. Kim has been engaged by many of Canada's leading orchestras, including the National Arts Center Orchestra, Montreal Metropolitan Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony, McGill Chamber Orchestra, and the Windsor, Regina, Victoria and Prince George Symphonies. She has also appeared with the Cobb, Georgia Symphony Orchestra, DeKalb, New Orleans, Aspen and Banff Festival Orchestras, and with orchestras in the United Kingdom, Germany and Poland.

    Ms. Kim has toured extensively throughout Canada and the United States, including performances at Alice Tully Hall and the Sante Fe and La Jolla International Music Festivals, where she performed with Cho-Liang Lin, Gary Hoffman, Andre Previn, and the Orion String Quartet. She performed Bach's Double violin concerto with Hilary Hahn at the 2002 Amelia Island Chamber music festival.

    Ms. Kim has been profiled on national and international television and has appeared on CBC, PBS and CBS networks. Her performances have been aired on NPR and CBC radio networks. Ms. Kim served as assistant and associate concertmaster for the Atlanta Symphony for three seasons. She is currently the assistant concertmaster of the Atlanta Opera Orchestra. Ms. Kim performs with local new music ensembles, Bent Frequency, Sonic Generator, Thamyris and recently joined the Atlanta Chamber Players.

    KSU Orchestra Invitational

    Mr. Kenn Wagner
    Artist-in-Residence in Violin

    Kenn Wagner has been a first violinist with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra since 1994, and has also served as acting assistant concertmaster of the ASO for one season.

    Outside of the ASO, he has also appeared abroad as guest soloist with the Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra in China, and Christ Church Symphony string section in New Zealand. Nationally he has soloed with the New Orleans Symphony, Arlington Symphony and the Wintergreen Music Festival Orchestra. Locally, Kenn has also appeared as soloist with the Atlanta Community Symphony Orchestra, the Dekalb Symphony, Clark/Spellman Symphony, Atlanta Philharmonic, and the Atlanta Musicians' Orchestra.

    In addition to his solo work and position with the ASO, Mr. Wagner enjoys playing chamber music and performs with groups such as the Riverside Chamber Players, Leaptrott Trio (Trio in residence at Brenau University), Atlanta Chamber Players, Awadagin Pratt’s Next Generation Festival, and National Chamber Players with special guest Kenneth Slowik of the Smithsonian Chamber Players. This season he also made his debut at Piccolo Spoleto with the Orlando Chamber Soloists and also performed with members of the Grammy Award winning Cuerteto Latino Americano. Mr Wagner also performed chamber music this summer with former IU faculty member Csaba Erdelyi.

    Kenn is a graduate of Indiana University where he trained with Joseph Gingold, former Concertmaster of the Cleveland Orchestra. Before completing his undergraduate degree at Indiana University, Mr. Wagner won a position with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, with coaching from Vernon Summers of the National Symphony and former Concertmaster of both Atlanta and National Symphonies, William Steck. Kenn is very pleased and honored to be on faculty at both Kennesaw State University and Morehouse College.

    KSU Orchestra Invitational

    Mr. Paul Murphy
    Artist-in-Residence in Viola

    Paul Murphy is the Associate Principal Viola with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, having held that position since 1986. Previously he held principal positions with the Minnesota Orchestra, the Kansas City Philharmonic, the Caracas (Venezuela) Philharmonic, and was a regular player with the St. Louis Symphony.

    He has also performed as Guest Principal for the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Murphy is a native of Pensacola, Florida , where he studied with the renowned Anna Tringas. He later graduated from the Cleveland Institute of Music where his principal teachers were David Cerone and Robert Vernon. During college he also served as an assistant teacher at the prestigious Meadowmount School of Music.

    Mr. Murphy is an avid chamber music performer and has played extensively with the Emory Chamber Music Society, the Atlanta Chamber Players, the Georgian Chamber Players, and the Minneapolis Artists' Ensemble. He has collaborated with such artists as Yo-Yo Ma, Sadao Harada, Robert McDuffie, Alan Gilbert, and Robert Spano. He can be heard in chamber music performances on the Innova, GM, Arundax, and ACA labels and is a featured performer on the short children's film, "The Orchestra Gets Dressed." Mr. Murphy has participated regularly in music festivals such as the Grand Teton Music Festival, the Wintergreen Music Festival, the Highlands Music Festival, and the Pensacola Chamber Music Festival. On a different note, he has recorded extensively with the rock bands R.E.M. and Collective Soul, and has also worked with Stone Temple Pilots, Indigo Girls, and Usher, Widespread Panic, and Outkast. He has soloed with the Atlanta Symphony in works by Mozart, Rorem, Bruch, and Freddy Mercury. A dedicated teacher, Murphy has served as an Artist Affiliate at Emory University, a distinguished artist at the McDuffie Center for Strings at Mercer University, and also maintains a private studio.

    KSU Orchestra Invitational

    Ms. Charae Krueger
    Artist-in-Residence in Cello

    Charae Krueger received her training in cello studies at the New England Conservatory of Music where she studied with Laurence Lesser and Colin Carr and received a Bachelor of Music degree in cello performance.

    She also holds an Artist Diploma from the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, MA. Ms. Krueger received her chamber music training with Eugene Lehner of the Kolisch Quartet, as well as with Robert Mann and Samuel Rhodes of the Juilliard String Quartet. She has also coached with such artists as Menahem Pressler of the Beaux Arts Trio, Louis Krasner, Felix Galimir and Leon Kirchner. She has played in masterclasses with Aldo Parisot, Janos Starker and Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi at the Banff School for the Arts.

    Since moving to Atlanta five years ago, Ms. Krueger has been appointed principal cellist of the Atlanta Opera Orchestra and the Atlanta Ballet Orchestra. She also performs frequently with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the Chamber Orchestra of Tennessee, where she will be featured as soloist this season. She enjoys playing chamber music with various ensembles throughout the city, performing with the Amadeus String Ensemble, the Musica Da Camera, the Chamber Music Society of Atlanta and the Lyra String Quartet. Ms. Krueger was recently appointed cello professor at Kennesaw State University and is a member of the faculty string quartet in residence there as well.

    While living in Boston, Ms. Krueger was principal cellist for ten years with the Cape Cod Symphony Orchestra and also performed with the Vermont Symphony, Nashua NH Symphony and the New England Chamber Orchestra. She was a founding member of the Arden String Quartet, a nationally managed group who, in 1996, succeeded the Borromeo and Ying Quartets by receiving the Arthur W. Foote Emerging Artist award. The Quartet was formed under the sponsorship of the Longy School of Music, where they were in residence from 1993-1996. As a member of the Arden Quartet, Ms. Krueger performed up and down the eastern U.S., playing in such venues as Lincoln Center, Merkin Hall, Rockefeller University, Brown University, the Seaside Institute, MIT, Harvard Musical Association, Tufts University and NEC's Jordan Hall. She has given U.S. premieres of works by Elliot Carter, Gunther Schuller, Herschel Garfein, Victor Ullman and Alexander Mnatsekanyan. She has also enjoyed playing chamber music in such groups as the Boccherini Ensemble, Trillium (a flute-oboe-cello trio) and the Speakeasy String Quartet (a jazz string quartet).

    Ms. Krueger plays on a cello made by Abraham Prescott in Concord, N.H. in 1830. 

    KSU Orchestra Invitational

    Mr. Joe McFadden
    Artist-in-Residence in Double Bass

    Joseph McFadden joined the bass section of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO) in September 2011, and in 2012 joined the faculty of Kennesaw State University School of Music.

    Prior to his arrival at the ASO, he was Principal Bass of the Alabama Symphony Orchestra. Mr. McFadden has also performed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Nashville Symphony. During his time with the Alabama Symphony, Mr. McFadden performed Bottesini's Double Bass Concerto No. 2 as a featured soloist.

    A native of Los Angeles, Mr. McFadden received his bachelor’s degree from California State University, Northridge, where he studied with Oscar Meza. He completed graduate studies at Indiana University under the instruction of Bruce Bransby. While in Indiana, he served as Principal Bass of both the Indiana University Chamber Orchestra and Symphony Orchestra.

    Mr. McFadden is a two-time fellowship recipient at the Aspen Music Festival and School, where he studied with Chris Hanulik and Bruce Bransby and performed throughout the summer with the Aspen Chamber Symphony. Mr. McFadden plays on a bass he commissioned from Chris Threlkeld, which was nished for him in October of 2009.

  • For more information, contact:
    Dr. Nathaniel Parker