Jennifer Trost

Year:
1979
Major:
Music Education (Minor in Biology)
Graduate/Professional School:
M.Mus., Michigan State University
Residence:
State College, Pa.
Career:
Associate Professor of Music, Penn State University
In a nutshell, what do you do?
I teach voice to undergraduate and graduate students; I also teach the song literature and opera literature courses. As part of my research, I am required to perform and so I do occasional opera roles and frequent recitals.
What are you working on right now?
In addition to my academic work, I am beginning to work on a new piece called “Beethoven’s Slippers,” which was recently composed for me by Judith Cloud. It’s a monodrama (one-woman show) lasting about 25 minutes and accompanied by piano and string quartet. I hope to do the world premiere in the fall of 2016 and then take it on tour. It will have modest staging and may even have projections of the librettist’s paintings as a backdrop. It will be very exciting to create this work from the ground up.
Why do you love what you do?
I find that it is fulfilling to be able to communicate universal emotions and experiences through song. I also enjoy singing in foreign languages and being exposed to other cultures, ways of thinking, and being exposed to exotic places and history. I like having to try to improve myself and my abilities on a day-to-day basis.
How did Albion help you get there?
Albion allowed me to explore all of my interests, to explore my potential and to develop into the person I am today. I started in biology and ended up in music. Through the mentoring and instruction of caring and talented faculty, I was able to grow and put aside my inhibitions and embark on a journey, which took me beyond my wildest dreams.
For me, Albion...
...was a life-altering experience. I stood at the fork in the road during a significant chapter in my life and I chose the road less taken, and to quote Robert Frost: “and that has made all the difference.”
Anything else you’d like to add?
I am grateful for the knowledge, experience and mentoring I received at Albion. It was a safe and nurturing environment for me. I discovered my passion for music and was inspired to stretch myself and see how far I could go. Who knew it would take me to foreign lands and introduce me to people and cultures I never dreamed of being exposed to!

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