Department of Music

News & Events

Brass Choir Presents Dead Man's Party! on Oct. 25

It’s a dance party!  It’s a Halloween party!  It’s a Dead Man’s Party!

The UR Brass Choir, a 45-member ensemble sponsored by the College Music Department, takes the Strong Auditorium stage to present Dead Man’s Party, its 5th anniversary Spooktacular concert extravaganza, on Friday, October 25th at 8:00pm.  The group will present rock, dance, and pop music re-purposed for brass instruments, including works by Daft Punk, Cherry Poppin’ Daddies, Men Without Hats, and Earth Wind & Fire, among others.  In keeping with tradition, this concert will also feature guest low brass musicians from the Rochester community in a supersized low brass ensemble.  A host of other guest musicians will complete the roster of performers involved in this over-the-top show.  Dramatic lighting, special effects, costumes, and video interlude vignettes will add to the party atmosphere in Strong Auditorium. 

The UR Brass Choir is celebrating its sixth year of existence under founder and director Josef Hanson.  The ensemble has performed in a wide variety of venues, including Hendricks Chapel at Syracuse University and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and is dedicated to crafting performances that are a bit out of the ordinary, featuring everything from Renaissance music to fanfares to heavy metal.

The Spooktacular concert is free and open to the public, and no tickets are required.  Parking is free in university lots all day on weekends.  For more information, contact Josef Hanson at 585-273-5157 or

Orientation and Audition Information

- The music theory placement test for incoming freshmen will take place on Wednesday, August 28th at 1:00pm in Lower Strong Auditorium. If you are even considering taking music theory while at UR, you should take this test! Reservations are not required-- simply show up with a pencil.

- After the placement test, a Music Q & A session will be held, with information on lessons, ensembles, courses, practice rooms, and more.  If you are not taking the theory placement test, simply come to Lower Strong at 1:30pm on August 28th.

- Ensemble auditions will take place throughout orientation week and the first week of classes.  Visit the large bulletin board in Dewey Hall to view the options and to sign up.

- Students interested in private lessons at the Eastman School should complete the online application at  For more details, visit the "FAQ" page.

High Voltage Course Profiled by Death Metal Underground

Death Metal Underground recently conducted an interview with Josef Hanson to discuss MUR 145, High Voltage- Heavy Metal Music and its History.  Check it out here!