Brianna Franklin and T.J. Wisham will reign as queen and king of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette’s 2021 Homecoming.
When the COVID-19 outbreak forced the cancellation of senior music recitals, some UL Lafayette students postponed theirs. Others played for small groups of faculty. But Andrea Rivera made sure a large audience saw and heard her presentation.
Rivera, a senior music performance major from Thibodaux, La., was scheduled to give her French horn recital at an International Horn Society event in mid-March at Oklahoma City University.
The night before she and seven fellow students enrolled in a music instruction course taught by Dr. Catherine Roche Wallace were to leave for the event, it was canceled.
Dejected but determined, Rivera found another outlet. She performed inside a virtually empty Angelle Hall, Ducrest-Gilfry Auditorium on campus. She was accompanied by pianist Wenting Wu, who is pursuing a master’s degree in collaborative piano. The hour-long recital was livestreamed.
“Initially, I was pretty disappointed that I wouldn’t have an actual audience, but when I heard how many people saw the livestream, I was like, ‘That’s cool,” Rivera said.
To date, over 1,450 people have seen her recital, including 742 people who viewed it as it happened, according to Roche-Wallace, an associate professor of horn and music theory.
Rivera, who is on track to earn her degree this semester, has received a scholarship and teaching assistantship to the University of Massachusetts Amhurst. She will pursue a master’s degree in music performance.
Then, she hopes to work as a studio musician, providing sounds for movies or video games.
“That would be a dream job,” she said.
The livestream of Rivera’s recital can be viewed on Facebook.
Photo caption: Andrea Rivera, a senior music performance major, livestreamed her French horn recital after a performance planned to be held in front of an audience was canceled due to the COVID-19 outbreak. She was accompanied by pianist Wenting Wu, who is pursuing a master’s degree in collaborative piano. Photo credit: Submitted photo