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Featured Student: Blake Roach

Blake RoachExpected graduation date: May 2021

Degree objective: Music Performance

Instrument: Percussion

University highlights, achievements and awards: Creative and Performing Arts Scholarship Winner, Performer on the President’s Recital, Contemporary Music Festival Student Performer Competition Winner, Contemporary Music Festival Music Now performance with faculty chamber ensemble, Regali Winds Faculty Chamber Ensemble performance. Featured soloist during International Music and Culture Festival.

High School: Center Grove High School

Hometown: Greenwood, IN

Family ties to ISU: None

I chose to attend ISU because… My private lesson teacher from grades 6–12 earned his bachelors and masters degrees from ISU. Through him I started to build a relationship with Dr. Finnie and that helped me choose ISU.

When I have free time, I like… to listen to new music, take photos, and watch YouTube.

My favorite places on campus to study are: The library

My favorite professor is… I really enjoy working with all the professors here at ISU. They are really great at what they do and they are fantastic people. My favorite… Dr. Rohde!

If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with… The members of Sō Percussion and/or Steve Schick

If I knew I could not fail, I would… create something that’s much bigger than myself that pushes the current state of art and percussion into new realms.

After graduation, I plan to… More school! I plan on to continue graduate study in percussion performance.

The one ISU experience I will always remember is/will be… As of right now, getting the chance to play on the Music Now recital for CMF with guest artists and guest composer was amazing. I could see the upcoming faculty-led percussion ensemble trip to Thailand, Taiwan, and China this summer will be an experience I will always remember.

If I knew then what I know now, I would… work so much on technique. If you can’t play technically well then you will really struggle when trying to learn the notes.

If I could serve as a mentor for future ISU music students, I would tell them/suggest that they… It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to not just only be a music major, but to also be a regular student at ISU. Stay focused, stay close to your friends, use your resources, focus on your mental health, practice, come prepared, trust your professors, and trust the process!!