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The most well-known music career is Performance. Performing musicians are employed in opera houses, symphony halls, musical theatres, jazz clubs, and many other venues. There are also a lot of performers who work mainly in recording studios, recording commercials, movie soundtracks and background music for popular musicians. Also, each branch of the military has a wide array of performing ensembles that employ musicians. If you are interested in this career, a degree in music performance is recommended. Many 21st century performers do not audition for jobs in professional ensembles. Instead, they market themselves as recitalists, seek grants, and fund their own performing tours. If you have the desire to pursue this aspect of a performing career, a music degree in liberal studies with an arts entrepreneurship minor is recommended.

All of APSU’s applied faculty are accomplished performers in their respective fields. Click here to access the list of music department faculty, and read more about their astounding careers as performers.

Dr. Kristen SienkiewiczDr. Kristen Sienkiewicz, Assistant Professor of Horn, is in demand as a freelance and studio horn player in Nashville and performs as principal horn of the Jackson Symphony and co-principal horn in Middle Tennessee's Gateway Chamber Orchestra. Her brass quintet, Bala Brass <>, has performed nationally and internationally and is dedicated to promoting a new standard for the brass quintet genre. Bala actively pursues and premieres current repertoire that is engaging for audiences and performers alike. The quintet has released two CDs consisting entirely of such commissions and previously unrecorded works. Dr. Sienkiewicz has taught at the notable Boston University Tanglewood Institute in Massachusetts. At APSU she teaches horn and music theory.

Dr. Jeffrey WilliamsDr. Jeffrey Williams, Assistant Professor of Voice, is in high demand across the country as a featured soloist. He recently recorded Thomas Sleeper’s series of eight operas, Einstein’s Inconsistency (available on Albany records, iTunes, and Spotify. He also recorded the first opera for Twitter, #IsOperaDEad, by Evan Mack which premiered January 20, 2015. His upcoming recording, The Death of Webern, by Michael Dellaria, is scheduled for release in late 2015. His professional website is


Dr. Sharon MabryDr. Sharon Mabry, APSU Professor of Voice has enjoyed an extensive career as a singer and as an author. Her most recent recording Modern American Artsong is available from Albany Records . She also recently authored The Performing Life: A Singer’s Guide to Survival (available from Rowman and Littlefield Publishing Company.


Dr. Stanley YatesDr. Stanley Yates maintains dual careers as APSU’s Professor of Guitar and well-known guitarist. He has published numerous guitar arrangements, teaching materials, scholarly articles, study guides and online lessons. His most recent releases include Guitaromanie: Period guitar arrangements by Ferdinando Carulli of music by Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and Rossini (2014) and Concerto Spirituel: Concertos by Vidal, Doisy and Viotti (2011); and his most recent editions include Parisian Guitar Concertos by Vidal, Doisy and Viotti (2010), and the Mel Bay Modern Guitar Method (2008). His website is available at


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