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Music Ensembles

Last updated January 16, 2019

he music department at Morningside College offers numerous ensemble opportunities for singers and instrumentalists. All Morningside College students are welcome to participate in music ensembles regardless of major.

Instrumental Ensembles

The music department at Morningside College provides a wide range of playing opportunities for students who want to participate in instrumental ensembles. Music majors and non-majors are welcome to perform in any ensemble.

  • Collaborative Piano: Qualified pianists may receive academic credit for performing collaboratively with other student musicians. This may include chamber ensembles using piano, solo accompanying, and large ensemble accompanying. Piano performance majors may use up to six credits of Collaborative Piano to meet ensemble requirements.
  • Morningside Pep Band: The Pep Band provides entertainment at all men's and women's home basketball games. The band is made up of volunteer participation. Members recieve a stipend for their participation. 
  • Instrumental Jazz Ensemble: The Jazz Ensemble performs music of various jazz styles through the use of big band and combos. It rehearses two days per week throughout the fall and spring semesters. One of Morningside’s most visible groups, the Jazz Ensemble regularly performs in venues throughout the community, while also hosting two on-campus concerts per semester. In recent years, the Jazz Ensemble has participated in competitions throughout the midwest. The group is open to any student who wishes to play jazz and improve their improvisation skills. Membership is determined through audition.
  • Marching Mustangs: The Marching Mustangs provide high energy and spirit during home football games with drum corps style halftime performances. The band weaves together a variety of music and innovative visual effects, creating an inventive and entertaining product. Winds, color guard, pit and marching percussion, synthesizers, and bass guitar are some of the Marching Mustangs’ key components. The band traveled to Rome, Georgia, in the fall of 2012 to join the Mustang Football Team at the NAIA National Championship game. All students are welcome to participate. The season begins with a camp one week prior to the start of fall classes. When classes are in session, the marching band rehearses three times per week. Prior membership in band/color guard is recommended.
  • Orchestra: The Siouxland Youth Symphony consists of college string, wind, brass, and percussion players along with top high school instrumentalists of the Siouxland area. Students may also be offered paid positions in the Sioux City Symphony Orchestra, providing valuable professional work experience and additional income.
  • String Chamber Ensembles: Qualified string players perform in small string ensembles coached by string faculty members.
  • Symphonic Wind Ensemble (SWE): The SWE is Morningside College's concert band. The objective of the ensemble is to bring the finest traditional and contemporary wind literature to their audiences as well as representing Morningside College in the community. The band performs regular concerts and tours throughout the academic year. No audition is required for membership in SWE, but previous band experience is recommended, and membership may be at the discretion of the director. An audition at the beginning of each semester will be used for seating placements and for the purpose of identifying soloists. All students enrolled in the Symphonic Wind Ensemble perform in the Marching Mustangs.
  • Wind, Brass, and Percussion Chamber Ensembles: Morningside offers chamber music opportunities as well as large ensembles, including Brass Quintet/Ensemble, Woodwind Ensemble, and Percussion Ensemble. Each performs a wide variety of literature written for their respective instrumentation. Membership in these ensembles is through audition and/or recommendation with the respective directors.

Vocal Ensembles

Students at Morningside have the opportunity to perform in The Morningside College Choir (mixed chorus), Choral Union (all choirs combined), Vocal Jazz Ensemble, Musical Theatre, and Opera Theatre. All vocal ensembles are open to all students, regardless of major.


  • The Morningside College Choir: The Morningside College Choir is an auditioned choir of approximately 35 students which performs frequently both on campus and off. The ensemble tours every year; the most recent tour was a trip to Italy in the spring of 2012 where they performed in Rome, Venice, and Florence. In the spring of 2011, the ensemble traveled to New York City where they performed at Carnegie Hall. Other recent trips abroad include a 2008 tour in China and a tour of Eastern Europe in 2005. The Morningside College Choir regularly performs major choral/orchestral works with the Sioux City Symphony Orchestra and as part of the Morningside Choral Union. Recent performances have included the premier of John Cheetham's Gloria, Brahms' Schicksalslied, the Fauré Requiem, The Creation by Franz Joseph Haydn, Benjamin Britten's War Requiem, and Carl Orff's Carmina Burana.

:: Verbum Caro Factum Est ... by Hans Leo Hassler
:: All That I Am ... by William Grant Stills
:: Ezek'ul Saw De Wheel ... arranged by William Dawson

  • Singing Men of Morningside/Bel Canto Women's Choir: The Singing Men of Morningside and Bel Canto Women's Choir are gender specific ensembles open to all studends. The two ensembles meet separately two times a week and perform in all major vocal concerts. The Singing Men of Morningside, Bel Canto Women's Choir and The College Choir perform together on masterworks concerts as well as Christmas at Morningside. The two ensembles are open to all Morningside students and membership does not require an audition. 
  • The Morningside College Opera Theatre: Music majors and non-majors alike enjoy performing in this ensemble. Singers form small ensembles (trios, duets, etc.) to perform staged scenes from operas and operettas. Click here to see photos of recent productions.
  • Morningside Master Chorale: is an ensemble comprising all the choral groups on campus (College Choir) . It is a large part of the annual Christmas concert entitled "Christmas at Morningside," a religious-themed concert involving many of our department's choral and instrumental ensembles. The performance has become an important tradition at the college and a must-see event for our community. Click here to see photos of recent "Christmas at Morningside" events.