SOU Music Passes Over to New Band Manager – Medford News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News


Christine Lundahl is the new group director at SOU and assistant professor of instrumental music. She also took the reins as artistic director of the Rogue Valley Symphonic Band. Photo by Richard Craig.

Derek Keller joined the SOU Music Faculty as an Assistant Professor, teaching music industry and production, theory and skills, composition, and guitar. Photo by Bernadette Mondok.

When face-to-face classes resume at Southern Oregon University this fall after a long pandemic hiatus, there will be two new faces at the Oregon Center for the Arts at the SOU Music Program.

Christine Lundahl has been appointed Assistant Professor of Instrumental Music and Conductor. And Derek Keller, also a new assistant professor, will teach music industry and production, theory and skills, composition and guitar.

Lundahl was hired in April after earning a doctorate in musical arts in wind conducting from the University of Michigan.

“I’ve been working ever since,” she said, “making plans for the fall and getting to know the local music school and band directors.”

She will be running a brass camp the first week of August and will begin face-to-face classes when school starts on September 22.

In addition to teaching, she will conduct the harmony orchestra (wind ensemble) and jazz orchestra at SOU and has taken the reins as artistic director of the Rogue Valley Symphonic Band.

“There is something to be excited about,” she said. “I am grateful for the opportunity to create live music with my students in person and to connect with an audience again. “

Lundahl hopes to expand the band’s program by hosting a variety of new events in Rogue Valley and at schools across the state, promoting what SOU has to offer music students.

“I will also focus on more diverse composers in our performances and build strong relationships between SOU and local band programs,” she said.

The ensembles will hold concerts at the Oregon Center for the Arts Music Recital Hall on South Mountain Avenue. Events scheduled this fall include a Halloween concert by the Rogue Valley Symphonic Band on October 24, complete with costumes and candy, and the December 9 concerts by the SOU Wind Ensemble and the Jazz Band.

While at the University of Michigan, Lundahl conducted concert and symphony orchestras, assisted with the undergraduate conducting streak, worked with track orchestras, and was director of the Alumni Concert Ensemble of the UM Band.

Prior to her graduate studies, she spent four years as a conductor at Liberty High School in Kissimmee, Florida, and two years as a conductor and conductor at Westridge Middle School in Orlando.

Lundahl plays the trumpet and has performed with several Florida wind and brass groups.

“I am delighted to be moving to Ashland,” she said, “and to join such a fantastic community with a history of supporting the arts.”

Keller, the new commercial music teacher, is an award-winning composer and performer. His music explores the interweaving of contemporary concert music, jazz and rock.

He started working at SOU in January.

“And what a year that has been,” he said – “new classes, new equipment, a new ensemble and two EPs (extended recordings) released in six months.”

Part of his job is leading the music industry and SOU’s production program, renamed MUSIX. In the program, students are grouped into a variety of ensembles to write, perform and produce original music, drawing inspiration from the sphere of popular music.

Additionally, the university will launch a new program to include sequential courses in audio and music production, leading to certification for students.

“I also teach music industry classes,” Keller said, “such as music industry studies, publishing, licensing, and copyright.”

He enjoys producing multimedia pieces in which he is the creator of everything from music to images, audience interactivity and programming. “Each piece is a new universe,” he said.

MUSIX’s debut EP, which includes four tracks, is available on A second falls on June 28.

Keller holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in music from the University of Georgia and a doctorate. from the University of California, San Diego.

He is an accomplished guitarist and singer. His music and performances are available on the Tzadik and Centaur labels.

Contact Ashland writer Jim Flint at [email protected]

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