Artist Spotlight: Jordan McRae

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Before I even meet Jordan McRae, it’s not hard to figure out who he is. When I arrive for our interview at the Daily Grind, there aren’t many people passing through who don’t stop to say ‘Hey Jordan’. The St. Mary’s sophomore and Beltsville, Maryland resident is a music and English double major, with a love of playing classical music. McRae, whose musical repertoire includes classical saxophone, jazz saxophone, choir, clarinet, and “a little bit” of piano and guitar, has performed in two student recitals during his time at St. Mary’s, and hopes to be able to perform in two more by the end of the semester. His favorite piece is ‘Aria’ by Eugene Bozza. “That was a piece that I found in high school,” says McRae, “and I performed it for one of my college auditions. It’s just a beautiful piece!” Academically, McRae particularly enjoyed taking Music Theory, saying “before coming here, I really didn’t know a lot about theory, and I feel now like that’s really essential to being a musician.” He credits Dr. David Froom, professor of composition and theory at St. Mary’s, with making the class particularly enjoyable, as well as pointing out certain recitals and symposiums for Jordan to check out.

In his spare time, Jordan enjoys going to basketball games, and he says one of his favorite memories of St. Mary’s is last year’s championship. His favorite spot on campus is The Point, a spot far different from the usual scenery in PG county, as he points out. As far as what the future beyond St. Mary’s holds, he’s still trying to figure it all out, though he imagines teaching might be one of his options. “In an ideal world,” he says, “I would just practice, practice, practice and perform.” To finish up the interview, I ask Jordan if there’s anybody he’d like to give a shout-out. “Shout to my Mom and to my brother for keeping me motivated to do this and for Don Stapelton for being a great teacher.”

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