News + Events

Recording Academy and GRAMMY Foundation Name FHU Professor Quarterfinalist

Henderson, Tenn. - May 05, 2015

The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation have named Dr. Richard England, Freed-Hardeman University music professor, a quarterfinalist for their annual Music Educator Award. He is one of 213 music teachers from 194 cities across 42 states to be selected.

The Music Educator Award was established to recognize kindergarten through college educators who have made a significant contribution to music education and who demonstrate a commitment to maintaining music education in the schools. The award will be presented at the Special Merit Awards Ceremony and Nominees Reception during GRAMMY Week 2016.

The next step in the process requires England to submit a video for the selection committee. It will include him teaching his Music for Children class, which has a combination of 25 pre-college students ages 5 through 10 in an after school music activity, and college level students enrolled in the course. Students Aaron Washington, Booth White, Midly Jadis and Brett Gieselbach in his Digital Music class are writing original music and editing the video for submission to the GRAMMYs. Theater major Abby Lambert and music major Kaytlin Gonzales are also providing assistance with the video.

“I told my students at the beginning of this semester that, if they went into the music business, things like this could happen, where they would have to work quickly with absolute deadlines,” England said. “But I wasn’t expecting something like this to happen. So they volunteered to put together the videos for submission to the Grammy Foundation.”

The quarterfinalists were chosen from more than 4,500 nominations. The field will be narrowed to 25 semifinalists and then ten finalists who will be announced in September. The eventual winner, chosen from that list, will receive a $10,000 honorarium and be flown to the host city to attend the GRAMMY Awards ceremony. Other finalists will receive $1,000 honorariums. The schools represented by all 10 finalists will receive matching grants.

England teaches courses in music appreciation, music education, music history and piano at FHU. He has performed in a variety of venues both nationally and internationally as a solo pianist, and has worked with musical theater productions including “Little Shop of Horrors,” Rogers and Hammerstein’s “Cinderella” and “The Secret Garden.” In addition, he has performed as the keyboardist with the Makin’ Music Showband at FHU and served as an accompanist for student recitals.  He has composed original music for FHU productions of “A Winter’s Tale,” and “The Miracle Worker,” as well as music for independent films.