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Bassoonist to share knowledge on musician health, join orchestra concert

February 28th, 2020

Dr. Thea Groth

Dr. Thea Groth, bassoon, and Dr. Derek Shapiro will join Bethel instrumental groups for their concert Fri., March 6, at 7:30 p.m. in Memorial Hall.

The Bethel College Chamber Orchestra and the Bethel College Wind Ensemble welcome this special guest, the second visitor to come to campus this semester thanks to the Bethel College Women’s Association’s Carolyn Schultz Lectureship Endowment.

Thea Groth, D.M.A., is a bassoonist and adjunct professor of music at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa.

Groth's March 5 program is aimed at music students, music teachers and anyone interested in learning about musicians’ performance-related injuries and how to prevent them.

The next evening, March 6, she will perform with the Philharmonia Orchestra in a 7:30 p.m. concert in Memorial Hall.

The concert will feature another guest, Derek Shapiro, D.M.A., director of bands at Virginia Tech University in Blacksburg, Va., as well as music by J.S. Bach, Chen Yi, Tania León, W.A. Mozart and Omar Thomas.

The concert is free and open to the public, with a freewill offering taken to support instrumental study and performance at Bethel.

Adam V. Fontana, D.M.A., Bethel director of instrumental music, conducts the Chamber Orchestra and Wind Ensemble.

Groth is a bassoonist, educator and clinician based in Northfield, Minn. She has her bachelor’s and doctoral degrees in music from the Hartt School at the University of Hartford (Conn.), and a master’s degree in music from the Manhattan School of Music.

Early in her career, Groth discovered a passion for musician health and wellness. While doing her doctoral work, she studied performance-related injuries in instrumental musicians, which became the basis of her dissertation, “Musician’s Maintenance: A Scientific Approach to Healthy Practice Techniques for Optimal Performance.”

Groth regularly lectures and leads workshops on musician injury awareness and prevention.   

As a performer, Groth has played on stages throughout the United States, Canada and Brazil. Currently principal bassoonist for the Mankato (Minn.) Symphony Orchestra, Groth is a former member of Ensemble 212, the Hudson Valley Chamber Winds and a founding member of Chione Quintet.

She has made numerous freelance appearances with Greater Bridgeport Symphony, Amore Opera, Savannah Philharmonic and the Greater Newburgh, Bergen, St. Cloud and South Dakota Symphony Orchestras. She has recorded with the Hartt School Wind Ensemble, and with trombone soloist Joseph Alessi of the New York Philharmonic on Passaggi, released on the Naxos Wind Band Classics label. 

Shapiro served on the faculties at Eastern Michigan University and Georgia Southern University before taking his current position at Virginia Tech.

He has a bachelor's degree in music education from Keene (N.H.) State College, an M.M. in conducting from the University of Michigan, and a D.M.A. from the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance. 

Shapiro taught middle school and high school band for nine years in the Orlando, Fla., public schools, where his concert and marching bands consistently won top awards, including two Class 4A marching band state championships and an invitation to perform at Carnegie Hall in 2009. 

Bethel is a four-year liberal arts college founded in 1887 and is the oldest Mennonite college in North America. Known for academic excellence, Bethel is the highest ranked Kansas private college, at #12, in Washington Monthly, Top 200 Bachelor’s Colleges; ranks at #23 in U.S. News & World Report, Best Regional Colleges Midwest; is’s highest ranked Kansas small college with the highest earning graduates; stands at #57 among 829 U.S. colleges and universities listed by lendEDU as “Best for Financial Aid”; has the #10 RN-to-BSN program in Kansas according to; and earned its second-straight NAIA Champions of Character Five-Star gold award, based on student service and academic achievement, all for 2019-20. For more information, see  

About Bethel

As the first Mennonite college founded in North America, Bethel College celebrates a tradition of progressive Christian liberal arts education, diversity within community, and lifelong learning.