Music Programs

Southwest Virginia Community College Music Program

From workshops and events featuring some of the nation’s finest musicians to numerous opportunities to participate and enjoy the sounds of the SWCC Ensembles and the Community Chorus, the Music Department at Southwest is a pleasure for all music lovers.

For information about the Music Programs at SWCC contact:
Dr. Joseph Trivette, Community Center, Room 171, 276.964.7381,
AA&S, General Studies in Music, Program Description
Career Studies Certificate in Traditional Music, Program Description

Ryan Dye SWCC Music Program

Ryan Dye, SWCC Music Program Graduate & Transfer Student to VT

SWCC Music Student & Virginia Tech transfer, Ryan Dye, reflects on performances over his last year at Southwest Virginia Community College
Performance is a vital component of any music major’s education,” states Joseph Trivette, Southwest Virginia Community College’s Albert Endowed Chair of Music. In fact, Dr. Trivette has a sign on his office wall that says “students learn to play music by playing music.” Recently, a 2015 graduate of the Southwest Music Program, Ryan Dye researched and made a list of the “gigs” he has performed at in the last year as a music major under Dr. Trivette. The results were a shock to him and Trivette alike.

A gig,” states Trivette, “is a shortened version of the word ENGAGEMENT. When musicians perform, many times we just simply say I’ve got a gig or I’m going to a gig,” Trivette elaborates. Many of the performances Dye noted were ones that he had taken part in as a member of Southwest Music Program ensembles: the Community Chorus, the Jazz Combo and Ensemble, the Jazz Vocal Ensemble, and the SWCC Brass Quartet (conducted by Dr. Andy Necessary).“In total, the number of performances that Ryan participated in for the 2014-2015 academic year soared to over 60 – quite an accomplishment,” states Trivette. “I am proud of Ryan and I hope that all the performances he has been involved with, along with all the other training and educational opportunities that he has received at Southwest will lead him to success as he transfers to the Virginia Tech Music Program in the fall and throughout the rest of his career.”
Some of the performances Dye and Trivette remembered included:

  • SWCC Faculty Meetings
  • numerous Christmas performances on and off the Southwest Campus
  • High School Senior visits
  • Tazewell Music Club
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Luncheon
  • SWCC Valentine’s Dinner/Dance
  • Luncheon performances at Heartwood in Abingdon
  • his and other student music major recitals
  • singing with the Knoxville Symphony (as part of the SWCC Festival of the Arts)
  • numerous performances at area schools, churches, and nursing homes
  • playing the National Anthem at a Bluefield Bluejay’s game
  • Tazewell County Air Show
  • and many private functions.

SWCC Music Program Continues Perpetuating Excellence

music graduates

SWCC students transferring to prestigious university music programs this year are: (left to right): Joshua Aguiar, Amber Cox, Emily Rose, Ryan Dye.

Dr. Joseph Trivette, Southwest Virginia Community College’s Gaynelle Lockhart Albert Endowed Chair of Music, is proud to announce that the music program at Southwest is continuing its line of excellence by transferring students to Appalachian State University and Virginia Tech in 2015.

I am very proud of the work these students have completed in this program and look forward to seeing how they conquer the challenges that await them in their next musical and academic endeavors” stated Dr. Trivette in reference to the students finishing the Associates Degree Program in 2015.

In its history, the Music Program at SWCC has transferred students to Appalachian State, Bluefield College, University of Miami, James Madison University, West Virginia University, East Tennessee State University, University of Georgia, Virginia Tech, University of Virginia at Wise, and Radford University. This year, four students will be going on to study music at prestigious university music programs.

Joshua Aguiar is from Bluefield, WV.
During his years of study at SWCC, he has sung in Southwest Virginia Community Chorus and Jazz Vocal Ensemble and played bass and piano in the SWCC Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Big Band. His major instrument is piano, at which he was a beginner when he started in the program at SWCC. His musical skill and knowledge have grown to be quite impressive in just three short years. His fondest memories of his days at Southwest include summer theory classes and travel for performances. He will be attending Appalachian State University this fall majoring in Music Education and Theory Composition.

Amber Cox hails from Honaker, VA.
She has been participating in facets of the music program for seven years dating back to when she was a freshman in high school. During those years, she has developed into an accomplished trumpeter. During her study at SWCC, she has played lead trumpet in the SWCC Brass Quartet, Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Big Band and sung in Southwest Virginia Community Chorus and Jazz Vocal Ensemble. Having the opportunity to come and participate as a very young musician and have great musicians influence her through this program are things she credits as having changed her life. Amber will be studying Music Performance at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC this fall.

Ryan Dye is a native of Richlands, VA.
After briefly attending Bluefield College, he found his niche in the Music Program at SWCC. During his study at SWCC, he has played lead trombone in the SWCC Brass Quartet, Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Big Band and sung in Southwest Virginia Community Chorus and Jazz Vocal Ensemble. Ryan is also the main “techie” in the music department because of his proficiency with technology and electronics. Ryan appreciates the opportunities to learn in practical ways by participating in all facets of musical performance, from rehearsing to setting up for performances and then performing on his trombone as well. Ryan will be attending Virginia Tech this fall and majoring in Music Technology and Music Education.

Emily Rose is a graduate of Richlands High School.
While there, she enjoyed playing with the Chamber Music Ensemble and Honors Band at SWCC. This influenced her decision to attend the Music Program there. During her study at SWCC, she has played lead clarinet and saxophone in the SWCC Clarinet Quartet, Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Big Band and sung in Southwest Virginia Community Chorus and Jazz Vocal Ensemble. Her talents have grown and developed greatly through her studies at Southwest. Her greatest memories at Southwest include playing with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra, which helped enhance her ambition to be a performer. Emily will be attending Appalachian State University this fall, majoring in Music Performance and Music Education.

To find out more about the SWCC music program, contact Dr. Joseph Trivette at 276.964.7381.

SWCC Community Chorus and Children’s Choir

The Community Chorus begins practice each fall in September and is active in providing choral programs for holiday and special events in the Community throughout the year. Enroll in MUS 137, Chorus, a 1 credit class.

The Chorus meets for practice beginning in September each Monday from 7-9 pm, Music Room, King Community Center

The Community Chorus and the Children’s Choir will perform on Sunday, December 7 at 3pm in the King CC Gym.


SWCC Community Chorus

Childrens Choir

Southwest Virginia Children’s Choir


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