CSU Hires New Director for Schwob School of Music

COLUMBUS, GA. - After an exhaustive nationwide search, Columbus State University has hired a new director for its heralded Schwob School of Music.

Laurence Kaptain comes to Columbus State from the Conservatory of Music at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, the University of Missouri System's designated campus for the visual and performing arts. At Missouri, his titles included professor of percussion as well as vice-provost for faculty programs and academic quality.

Kaptain will officially begin at CSU on July 1, but has already become involved with the Schwob school and the Columbus community. In April, he joined a group of local music supporters who traveled to New York City to see the CSU Chorale and University Singers at an invited performance in Carnegie Hall.

'Dr. Kaptain, having attended the Carnegie Hall concert and conducted a planning retreat before joining CSU, is off to a running start in leading Schwob School of Music to a new plateau in its already distinguished history,' said Bill Chappell, dean of the College of Arts and Letters, of which the school of music is a part.

An accomplished musician, Kaptain brings a wide range of experiences and talents to Columbus. He is widely heard as a percussionist, marimba, and cimbalom (the Hungarian dulcimer) artist. Most recently he has been featured with the MET Chamber Players and the Ensemble Sospeso in Carnegie Hall, the Chicago Symphony, Canada's DuMaurier Contemporary Music Festival, Tanglewood Music Center Contemporary Music Festival, the Aspen Music Festival, Milwaukee Symphony, as well as with the Montreal Symphony in a special video recording for Japan's NHK Television Network.

A former Fulbright Scholar to Mexico, he was awarded the first Doctor of Musical Arts degree in percussion instruments from the University of Michigan. His bachelor's and master's degrees are from Ball State University and the University of Miami.

In 2003 Kaptain was named a fellow to the Society for Values in Higher Education. He also has received the University of Missouri Kansas City Conservatory of Music Muriel Kauffman Excellence in Teaching Award, named Outstanding Alumnus of the Ball State University School of Music, and the University of Missouri-Kansas City Trustees named him a Faculty Fellow.

He has served on the faculties of Drake University, Stephen F. Austin State University and held visiting appointments at the University of Michigan, the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music.

Kaptain said he was impressed with Columbus, the university and the faculty that he will soon be leading. 'Columbus State University and the people of the city of Columbus are setting new standards for supporting the arts,' he said. 'The Schwob School of Music is carving out a distinctive niche in the landscape of performing arts schools and cultural organizations. I look forward to providing leadership in collaboration with this exceptional community of faculty and student artist/scholars, the professional staff and the citizens of Columbus.'


Contacts: Bill Chappell: 706-568-2055; chappell_bill@ColumbusState.edu

Larry Kaptain: 913-262-3785, kaptainld@mac.com