Bruce J. G. Kotowich, DMA, Associate Professor, Director of Choirs, Vocal Area Supervisor
Courses: Chamber Choir, University Singers, Conducting, Class Voice, Theory III, Special Topics courses
Dr. Kotowich is an Academic Advisor for Music students.
Shahida Nurullah, Special Instructor, Jazz / Pop Voice
Studio: The Armouries
Deeply steeped in the generations of great Jazz and Blues that centers the rich musical legacy of Detroit (which includes Kenn Cox, Donald Walden, Marcus Belgrave and Thomas “Beans” Bowles), Shahida Nurullah is one of the motor city’s premier and most treasured jazz vocalists.
Her outstanding musical intelligence is vibrantly reflected through a versatile repertoire that includes blues, jazz, samba, bossa nova, show tunes and more. Shahida has performed at the Detroit International Jazz Festival on a number of occasions including with Charlie Gabriel of the Preservation Hall Band and with clarinetist Eddie Daniels in a jazz version of Vivaldi's “Four Seasons”. Shahida performed in the inaugural festival with Kenn Cox and the Guerilla Jam Band. She performed an “American Songbook” concert with the Windsor Symphony Orchestra and as a guest vocalist with the Preservation Hall Band at Preservation Hall New Orleans, LA. Shahida and her trio regularly play at clubs throughout southeastern Michigan, including The Dirty Dog Jazz Café and Cliff Bell’s.
Shahida recorded and performed with internationally lauded pianist Geri Allen’s band “Open on All Sides,” throughout Europe. The New York Times lauded her performance with Allen at New York’s Knitting Factory and she is a recipient of the Spirit of Detroit Award.
Shahida’s latest recording “The Ruby and the Pearl” is the culmination of a lifetime of music and incredible experiences. Its intimacy, detailed craft and joyful rendering serves as a tribute to great songs and her never-ending search for material equal to her vocal skills. She is indeed a lovely pearl adorning the musical firmament.
Dr. Jennifer Swanson, Voice, Vocal Techniques
Assistant Professor, MusicOffice: Armouries, AM 234
Tel: (519) 253-3000 ext. 2798
Known for her compelling delivery and connection with audiences, soprano Jennifer Swanson has performed art song, opera, and oratorio repertoire in a wide range of settings. From an intimate concert in an abandoned quarry on Pelee Island, to opera programs for thousands of young people in Florida, to recitals and collaborations with ensembles in Ontario, Minnesota, and Iowa. Her repertoire ranges from Handel, Larsen, and Purcell, to Poulenc, Harbison, and Strauss. Special projects include the premier and subsequent performances of Nattsanger, a group of seven Norwegian songs composed for Jennifer by American composer Abbie Betinis.
“I love discovering layers of possibilities in the music,” Jennifer says, “exchanging ideas with other musicians, and finding myself in the process.” No matter what the program or setting, her aim is to connect with her audience so that together they can share the experience of transforming text and sound into meaning.
Discovery is also at the heart of her teaching. In the private studio, Jennifer helps students discover their authentic sound, a force that is wholly unique to each individual. In the classroom, she’s created Teaching Labs for her Vocal Pedagogy classes, so that vocal and instrumental majors can teach each other, discovering strengths they didn’t realize they had.
Jennifer has taught voice as well as courses in pedagogy, diction, music appreciation, and music history. Formerly on the faculty at Bemidji State University in Minnesota and then Loras College in Iowa, Jennifer joined the faculty at the University of Windsor in Ontario in 2016. She holds degrees in vocal performance from the University of Illinois, New England Conservatory, and the University of Minnesota.
“The collective, shared experience with an audience reminds me that we’re all in this together.”
Updated: January 29, 2020