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KU School of Music welcomes three new faculty for fall semester

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

The KU School of Music is pleased to announce the addition of three new faculty members for the fall 2020 semester.

New faculty appointments are Julius Kyakuwa, assistant professor, music education; Eric Zuber, visiting assistant professor, piano; and Sam Um, lecturer, percussion.

Julius Kyakuwa standing outside wearing a dark suit Julius Kyakuwa received his Ph.D. from Louisiana State University, and both his Bachelor of Music Honors and Master of Music, cum laude, in Music Education from The University of Pretoria (UP) in South Africa. Prior to joining UP, he pursued undergraduate studies at Makerere University in Uganda, his native country. Kyakuwa is a seasoned music educator having taught general music for several years in Uganda and in South Africa. As a world music performer and educator, he has conducted workshops and master classes to music educators around the globe on integrating the arts in music classrooms and teaching music from a multicultural perspective. Kyakuwa also taught African music theory and practice, ethnomusicology, and world music to undergraduate and postgraduate students of music education and music therapy at UP.

Dr. Kyakuwa’s research interests include community partnerships with schools, arts integration and creative teaching of music, multicultural and culturally responsive pedagogy, and music teacher education and professional development. He has presented his work at state, national, and international conferences, including the Society for Music Teacher Education Symposium, National Association for Music Education’s Research Conference, the American Education Research Association Annual Meeting, International Society of Music Education Conference, the Pan African Society of Musical Arts Education conventions, and at music education conferences in Louisiana. Kyakuwa’s publication activity includes a single-authored book chapter, a multi-authored article in the Journal of Research in Childhood Education, a second-authored article in the Arts Education Policy Review, and short essays in The Qualitative Report.

Eric Zuber sitting on a stool and wearing a light colored suitEric Zuber, earned his degrees from Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University (BM, AD, DMA), the Juilliard School (MM) and the Curtis Institute (diploma).

Hailed as an "irresistibly fluid" and "illuminating" pianist by the New York Times and the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Eric Zuber has established himself as one of the leading American pianists of his generation.

Zuber is a recipient of major prizes from many of the world's most prestigious international piano competitions including Arthur Rubinstein, Cleveland, Seoul, Sydney, Honens, Dublin, and the Piano-e-Competition. He was awarded Gold Medals in both the Hilton Head and USASU Bösendorfer International Piano Competitions, and was named a Laureate of the American Pianists Association Fellowship Awards.

In addition to a busy performing career, Zuber is a devoted teacher, dedicated to helping the next generation of pianistic talent. He has held previous faculty positions at several universities including Memphis, Ball State, Columbus State, and Bucknell, and has toured extensively throughout Europe and Asia as both a teacher and performer.

Sam Um walking outside in an industrial settingSam Um is a percussion artist, performer, and educator. Um has been featured in many music series and festivals such as YellowBarn, Musical Masterworks, Nasher Sculpture Center and has appeared on the stages of renowned halls such as Carnegie Hall, Cite De la Musique of the Philharmonie de Paris, Shanghai Symphony Hall, and the Kennedy Center.

Um is an active artist in community outreach and community engagement programs performing internationally in Spain, Mexico, Costa Rica, and the United States with programs such as the YellowBarn Music Haul, and The New Life Foundation. Sam has also been featured with the United Nations Chamber Music Society’s children’s concert to help to fund Teach the World Foundation.

Um earned his Master’s degrees at the Yale School of Music as a Havemeyer Scholarship recipient under Robert van Sice. He earned his bachelor’s degree at the Eastman School of Music with the Howard Hanson Scholarship and John Beck Scholarship under Michael Burritt and was honored with the prestigious Performer’s Certificate. Um is currently pursuing a doctoral degree at the Peabody Conservatory.

School of Music Calendar
Music students present hundreds of public concerts every year
Students perform in KU choirs, concert bands, pep bands, ensembles, symphony orchestra, and jazz combos
The school owns one of the greatest jazz record collections in the world
KU Wind Ensemble performed the world premiere of the symphony "In the Shadow of No Towers" at Carnegie Hall
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.