Faculty Biographies

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Dr. Janet Nepkie, SUNY Distinguished Service Professor, Legal Issues in the Music Industry and Music Industry Internship, Catskill Symphony.


Year Hired: 1970

Tenure Status: Tenured 1977

Degrees Earned:
Ph.D. in Related Arts from New York University
M.M. in Music Performance from The University of Michigan
B.M. in Music, Certificate in Music Education from The University of Michigan

Dr. Janet Nepkie started SUNY Oneonta's Music Industry program in 1982 and is its principal designer. She is a SUNY Distinguished Service Professor and Coordinator of the extensive Music Industry Internship Program. She has been nationally profiled as one of the leading Music Industry Educators in ROLLING STONE magazine and was interviewed for Pollstar Magazine.

She is active in the development of Distance Learning initiatives and policies and has taught online and hybrid classes to an international audience. She developed and taught a course on virtual promotion and event production in the virtual world, Second Life.com. She has taught an online course for the SUNY Learning Network entitled Copyright for Higher Education.

She has presented four conferences to national audiences on Teaching and Technology: Copyright for Higher Education. She enrolls in Music and Entertainment Industry seminars on a yearly basis with the Practising Law Institute and has completed a seminar at Cornell University entitled "Computer Law and Policy."

Dr. Nepkie developed and taught the first Honors course for the Music Department and she served on the college-wide Honors Committee. She has served as Chair of the University Faculty Senate Undergraduate Academic Programs and Policies Committee, Chair of the Senate Ethics and Institutional Integrity Committee, Chair of the Senate Programs and Awards Committee and Chair of the Senate Ad Hoc Committee on Grading Authority. She is past-President of the Music and Entertainment Industry Educators Association, an international organization of music educators and business executives.

She is the SUNY Oneonta Teaching, Learning, and Technology Fellow for Copyright Inquiry and Implementation.  She is the Chair of the SUNY Faculty Advisory Council on Teaching & Technology and she chairs the FACT2 Task Group on Intellectual Property. She is a member of the Copyright Society of the USA and has served on the Board of Trustees of that organization. She is principal 'cellist with the Glimmerglass Opera Company, the Catskill Symphony Orchestra and she also works with numerous symphonies, chamber ensembles, and in recording studios where she has performed on recordings of albums, movie soundtracks and jingles.

Dr. Timothy Newton
, Associate Professor ,(2007)
(on leave 2011-12); promoted fall 2012; tenured fall 2013


Courses taught:
MUSC 170: Beginning and Intermediate Class Piano
MUSC 248: Survey of Music Theory II
MUSC 249: Music Theory I
MUSC 250: Music Theory II
MUSC 270: Private voice and piano
MUSC 280: Chamber Orchestra
MUSC 280: Chamber Singers
MUSC 280: Women’s Choir
MUSC 280: Michael Jackson Choir (Fall 2013)
MUSC 307: Western Music to 1750: Part I
MUSC 308: Western Music to 1750: Part II
MUSC 309: Western Music from 1750 to Present: Part I (Fall 2013)
MUSC 310: Western Music from 1750 to Present: Part II (Spring 2014)
MUSC 371: Applied Conducting
THTR 190/290: Music Director for staged musical productions

Music Director, Apollo Music Club opera and operetta productions
Independent studies in voice, conducting, score and formal analysis

Conductor, area all-state and summer music festivals in New York and Illinois
Conductor, community orchestras and choral organizations in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, New Hampshire, and New York

B.M. cum laude, Ithaca College School of Music,piano performance (1985)
M.M. Ithaca College, conducting with focus in opera/music theater coaching (1988)
D.M.A. University of Illinois, choral conducting and literature (2004)
Dissertation: A Study and Critical Edition of Samuel Capricornus’s Theatrum musicum (1669, 1670), and Continuatio theatri musici (1669)

University of Illinois Nicholas Temperely Award for Dissertation in Musicology (2004)
ACDA Julius Herford Dissertation Prize for Choral Music Research (2004)
Recognized three times for excellence in teaching by students as Graduate TA at University of Illinois (1997, 1998)

Honor Societies
Pi Kappa Lambda
Phi Kappa Phi

Conducting, accompanying, musical preparation, Pittsburgh Opera (1989-90)

Previous college positions: staff accompanist, Ithaca College (1986-88); Lecturer at Grace College (1990); Visiting Assistant Professor, Huntington College (1991); Lecturer, Indiana-Purdue University (1991); Assistant Professor, Moody Bible Institute (1992-96); Graduate Teaching Assistant in Conducting, University of Illinois (1996-99); Conductor and Visiting Assistant Professor, Dartmouth College (1999-2003); Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Choral Conducting, Grinnell College (2005-7).

Professional Experience:

I am a choral and opera conductor, choral singer, accompanist, and voice coach for singers. I specialized in both conducting and choral literature and minored in musicology during my doctoral studies primarily under the tutelage of Fred Stoltzfus, Chet Alwes, and John Walter Hill. I have straddled the worlds of opera, choral and orchestral music, mainly as a teacher in higher education, though also as professional musician. Additional training has included postgraduate time at the Conductor’s Institute under Harold Farberman at the Hartt School of Music, Chorus America’s Saranac Lake Conducting Symposium, the Oberlin Baroque Performance Institute, Eastman Summer Session, Royal College of Music, and have conducted in choral and orchestral masterclasses under Helmuth Rilling, Elmer Iseler, Margaret Hillis, Vance George, Thomas Baldner, Harold Farberman, and others. My experience as a symphonic choral singer in London has afforded me opportunity to watch several conductors prepare opera and choral/orchestral repertoire including Antonio Pappano, Colin Davis, Charles MacKerras, Roger Norrington, Lorin Maazel, Jeffrey Tate, Richard Hickox, Daniele Gatti, Peter Maxwell Davies, Stephen Cleobury, Marin Aslop and others. I have sung as a member of the London Symphony Chorus, the BBC Symphony Chorus, continue to sing regularly with London’s critically acclaimed Philharmonia Chorus, first under Robert Dean, and now under Berlin chorus master, Stefan Bevier.

Teaching Philosophy:

I love to ignite students’ creativity. My motivation comes from the joy of inspiring students to consider things that they haven’t, re-considering things they have assumed without question, and bringing thoughts to bear on music by building connections to things they already know.  As an undergraduate student, I had the privilege to study with a host of inspirational professors including Mary Ann Covert, Susan Youens, Garry Brodhead, Arthur Ostrander, Edward Swenson, and Donald Boomgaarden at Ithaca College, and pianist John Barstow at the Royal College of Music. I try to awaken enthusiasm for fluent technical and musical achievement in my students. Having absorbed John Walter Hill’s views during my research in music from the 17th century, I encourage my students to consider musical systems as continuously evolving within any period, while attempting to shed anachronistic views that condescend from our present place in history or suggest our artistic systems are better or somehow more advanced. I have also devoted several years studying paradigms of mentoring outside musical contexts and believe the learning process benefits most from individual mentors and coaches. I have worked and apprenticed under several generous professionals in their own work environments and believe this is a vital link in the fusion of ideas and technique, of knowledge and raw talent, ultimately preparing the transition from student to contributing professional with a mind set on growth for life-long study and learning. My musical heroes are numerous and include Claudio Abbado, Antonio Pappano, Simon Rattle, Helmuth Rilling, Georg Solti, Maurizio Pollini, Mitsuko Uchida, Martha Argerich, Anne-Sophie Mutter, James Levine, Placido Domingo, Rene Fleming, Kiri Te Kanawa, John Eliot Gardiner and others whose compelling artistry provides inspiration to work from day-to-day.



The SUNY Oneonta Music Department is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music.
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