Vanguard University’s Acclaimed Music Department to Rekindle the Spirit of Christmas for Orange County audiences at its Annual Christmas Concert

Christmas Fantasia 2013 will deck the halls with a medley of carols, classics, and popular music, bringing boundless energy and talent to a time-honored Vanguard University tradition

Costa Mesa, CA, October 9, 2013 – Vanguard University’s music department will present its annual Christmas concert, Christmas Fantasia, to audiences at two prominent Orange County venues in December 2013. The concert, which began in 1997 as an intimate banquet for leaders and supporters of the university, has grown to be one of the University’s signature events.

Each year, Christmas Fantasia celebrates the songs of the season with a variety of music including selections from Messiah and the Nutcracker with usually a light spoof of a major classical theme. With performances at Segerstrom Center for the Arts and St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, the Christmas concert features Vanguard University’s 150 member choirs and Vanguard’s many ensembles.
“I don’t know too many Christmas concerts where the students mix with the audience, walking in with them, seating them, and interacting with them,” said Dr. James Melton, professor of music at Vanguard University. “It showcases the relationship that our faculty has with our students and how we invest in them to help them be successful not only in college but also in the future, as world changers. At Christmas Fantasia, we let our students tell the Vanguard story.”

Vanguard’s music faculty includes educators who bring a wealth of experience as seasoned musicians to the classroom and beyond. Vanguard music students have recently completed tours of China, western Europe, and South Korea, and have performed at leading venues including Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York City. The Concert Choir and Vanguard Singers have traveled to dozens of countries throughout Europe and Asia and perform approximately 100 concerts a year in the greater Orange County area.
The evening will feature performances by the Vanguard University Concert Choir, Orchestra, Women’s Chorus, Jazz Ensemble, Guitar Ensemble, Barbershop Quartets, and the Vanguard Singers and Band.

Christmas Fantasia 2013 schedule:
Tuesday, December 3, 2013 at 8:00pm
Segerstrom Center for the Arts / Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall
Friday, December 6, 2013 at 8:00pm
St. Andrews Presbyterian Church
For more information about Christmas Fantasia 2013, visit http://www.vanguard.edu/fantasia/

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ABOUT VANGUARD UNIVERSITY
Vanguard University (www.vanguard.edu) is a private, Christian, comprehensive university of liberal arts and professional studies equipping students for a Spirit-empowered life of Christ-centered leadership and service. The U.S. News & World Report has ranked Vanguard among the best baccalaureate colleges in the west in their 2012-2013 rankings of colleges and universities and The Princeton Review named Vanguard a 2012-2013 “Best in the West” College. Vanguard is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).

Students Serve City by Participating in Annual Homeless Count

HomelessnessEarly in the morning on Oct. 17, Vanguard University students spread across Costa Mesa to count the number of homeless individuals for the annual homeless census.

Starting at Costa Mesa City Hall, Vanguard students and other adults from the community split into groups and dispersed into the city. Groups walked up and down the streets in their square mile sections recording the number of homeless individuals they found.

The combined counts from each section amounted to 109 individuals. With a margin of plus or minus five, this year’s count showed a slight decrease from previous years, which have hovered around 120 homeless people.

Since 2009, Vanguard University Sociology Professor Ed Clarke, Ph.D., has organized the annual homeless censuses. “We cover all the city. Every inch, I hope, is observed,” Dr. Clarke said in an Orange County Register article about the count.

To read the Orange County Register’s article about the count, click here.

Honor and Support Veterans at Vanguard’s Veterans Day Celebration

vet_day_invite13_v2Join Vanguard University for live music, hors d’oeuvres, camaraderie and an opportunity to honor veterans at the Veterans Day Celebration on Nov. 8.

Hosted in the Veterans Courtyard of Honor, the event starts at 11:30 a.m. and will end around 1 p.m. “The purpose of the event is to honor veterans from every generation,” Director of Veterans Affairs Brent Theobald said.

The event features keynote speaker Dr. Bill Peters, a Vietnam veteran and author of the book First Force Recon Company: Sunrise at Midnight. Dr. Peters will give “a message of hope to veterans to overcome the challenges they face and become all they were meant to be,” Theobald said.

Through his years of military service, Dr. Peters received many major awards and decorations including: The Silver Star, two Bronze Stars (both with the combat “V” for valor) and the Purple Heart. Dr. Peters served as a Force Recon Platoon Commander in Vietnam where he conducted 23 long-range patrols in enemy controlled territory.

Dr. Peters commitment to success has led to many other great achievements. In addition to his bachelor’s degree from San Francisco State University, Dr. Peters has a California Life-time Credential in education, a Masters of Divinity Degree and a Ph.D. in Psychology. He also volunteers as the president of ICAN, the International Children’s Aid Network, which he and his wife co-founded.

The event is open to the community. Individuals interested in attending should RSVP by Oct. 30 to Lindsay Bodwell at lindsay.bodwell@vanguard.edu or by calling 714-966-5458.

To learn more about Vanguard’s Veterans Resource Center, click here.

 

LOCALE Magazine Features Vanguard University Senior Communications Major Kristen Achziger

VU Scholarships-13-030In its Holiday 2013 edition, Orange County’s LOCALE Magazine’s article, Shooting Star, commends Vanguard University for offering a wide selection of arts programs and features senior communications major Kristen Achziger.

In the feature, writer Korrie (Hansen ’05) Lukei says that young artists are eagerly filling up art programs ready to “put their own stamp and flare on the world.” Regarding the need for art programs, she says, “Costa Mesa’s own Vanguard University is doing its part by offering majors in film production, screenwriting, music education, performance, composition and ministry and theatre arts. Vanguard also offers art classes that teach drawing, acrylic painting, and watercolor.”

Focusing on the cinema arts, Achziger uses video and photography to put her stamp on the world. Taking the photojournalism course with Professor Chauncey Bayes especially impacted her, the article says. For the class, students were required to use photographs to tell a person’s story. Through 14 photos, Achziger captured the story of a ministry group that builds relationships with homeless individuals staying in Orange County motels.

Working for the Vanguard Office of Marketing and Communications, Achziger creates and edits videos regularly. With her bachelor’s degree almost completed, Achziger has at least 30 videos completed. These include personal projects, videos for the marketing and communications department and for the Student Government Association (SGA), as well as class assignments.

To read the entire feature, click here and proceed to pg. 159.

 

Black Student Union Club Kicks Off with A Fresh Start and Purpose for this Semester

BSUWith a new name and clearly defined purpose, Vanguard University’s Black Student Union (BSU) started the semester with a clear purpose.

“It’s a support group for African American students on campus. Our motto is heart and soul, affirmation and awareness,” Diversity intern and club coordinator Crystal Todoroff said. At the start of the semester, Todoroff worked with other Diversity leaders to change the name of the year-old club. The previous name, Alpha Phi, is the name for an already established sorority and BSU more clearly represents the club, she said.

BSU seeks to provide a place for members to affirm one another, to grow together and to promote character development while rooting their identity in Christ, Todoroff said. Coming to Orange County can be a shock for any ethnicity, Todoroff said, the club discusses the differences and encourages members to know the culture they are in and know how to be themselves in it.

On Oct. 18, the club hosted an event called “Allow Me to Reintroduce Myself” in the Cove. The event was open to the whole campus and featured two student speakers and a poem from the BSU cabinet. Students often begin college by sharing only the “ideal” portion of who they really are, Todoroff said. This event encouraged students to reveal their whole identity. The event had a great turnout and “the presence of God was there,” she said.

During Vanguard’s family weekend, BSU hosted another event, their first Diversity family reunion, with the other diversity clubs on campus. About 80 people gathered for a BBQ, games and fellowship. Todoroff said they hope to make it an annual event.

When describing BSU’s purpose, Todoroff said: “Our goal is to establish a community. Our major vision is to help people grow in their identity.” To accomplish these goals, the cabinet gathers every Monday evening to brainstorm for new events and prepare for the monthly club meetings.

To learn more about BSU and other diversity clubs, click here.