The Music Department’s performing ensembles include choruses and instrumental ensembles for which college credit is offered. The Franklin & Marshall College Chorus concentrates on the masterpieces of the choral repertory. The select Chamber Singers performs music of many styles and periods for smaller vocal ensemble. The choral ensembles each perform at least twice a year and are open to all members of the College community by audition at the beginning of each semester.
Instrumental ensembles include the Franklin & Marshall Orchestra (combining the strengths of the student body and the Lancaster community) and the Symphonic Wind Ensemble (which performs literature for both the full ensemble and chamber groups). In addition, the Jazz Band and Chamber Music Society provide opportunities for exploration of more specialized repertoires appropriate to their respective instrumentation and style. Each ensemble performs at least three times a year. The instrumental music program has a commitment to performing music from a variety of periods, with particular interest in premieres of new music. The department also offers a pep band for athletic events. All the ensembles are open to those who are willing to make a commitment and have an interest in making instrumental music.
In addition to private lessons for academic credit, the Music Department administers the Artist-Teacher Program to provide co-curricular private study in applied music. The teachers perform on campus and assist students in the presentation of solo and group recitals. For more information and to ensure a place in the program, students should contact the Music Department before the semester begins.
The Poor Richards is a group of students who sing mixed chorus arrangements. In addition, the Chessmen, an all-male a cappella group and Sweet Ophelia, an all-female a cappella group, both sing a variety of songs that are often arranged by the student members. The groups perform regularly on campus, locally before alumni and civic meetings and at other colleges and universities.
The F&M Players, a student group, directs its own musical comedy.
Sound Horizons, a concert series, offers a broad musical spectrum from the classical repertoire. Programs are held in the Ann and Richard Barshinger Center for Musical Arts in Hensel Hall.
Each year, Franklin & Marshall sponsors theatrical performances that are impressive in scope and quality. Performances may be professional or may be student work sponsored by the Theater, Dance and Film Department.
The Roschel Performing Arts Center is the main-stage theater for the Department of Theater, Dance and Film. Performances in the Schnader Theater presented in the Roschel Center are directed and designed by faculty members, with cast and crew selected by audition from the student body. The Green Room Theatre presents productions by both students and faculty, usually in a less formal, experimental context. Course credit is available for some participation in theater productions.
Franklin & Marshall’s Dance Programs sponsors full-scale dance productions throughout the year in the Schnader Theater, Roschel Center and Green Room Theatre, as well as performance exchanges with dance programs at other area colleges.
Residencies by major guest-artists include six to eight Master Classes in various dance styles throughout the year, workshops in dance reconstruction, lecture-demonstrations and guest performances. Two dance studios in the Roschel Center serve as classrooms and rehearsal spaces and the larger studio doubles as a fully functional theater for small dance productions. Additionally, the Franklin & Marshall Dance Company, Dance Club and Dance Team offer numerous opportunities for student choreography, performance and support of dance activities.
In addition to the regular video production courses offered by the Film Program, a student video/media club sponsors and supports extracurricular student video production with its own pool of digital equipment. Student video productions are shown in the Green Room Theatre. Other opportunities for video production include live multiple-camera recordings of all main-stage productions, regular stage-screen and dance-video collaborations and a pioneering community media laboratory.
Prolog is Franklin & Marshall College’s Literary and Arts Magazine, open to submissions from any students enrolled at the College. It bi-annually publishes works of fiction, poetry, creative non-fiction and art. The student editorial staff elects published authors and professional artists to choose outstanding submissions for awards.
Plume is Franklin & Marshall College’s Foreign Language Literary magazine, open to submissions from any members of the College and its community. It publishes a magazine each spring containing poems and short stories in diverse languages with English translations accompanying each.
Visual Art Displays
The Phillips Museum, located on three floors of the Steinman College Center, houses four distinct galleries. The Nissley Gallery, at the main entrance of the Museum features objects from the permanent collection; the Dana Gallery, also located on the street level, exhibits contemporary solo shows; the Rothman Gallery, located on the level below, features traveling exhibits and student shows; and the Gibson Gallery, on this same level, offers both students and faculty a flexible space to display as well as to examine and study art, and at times features exhibitions curated from the permanent collection.