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Two violinists to play special concert April 9

September 11th, 2017

NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – The annual Spring into the Arts Festival in Harvey County will be chock-full of music, including special concerts at Bethel College April 9 and 10.

Two young violinists and members of the Wichita Symphony Orchestra, Emily Bishop and Hannah Murray, will play April 9 at 4 p.m. in the Administration Building chapel at Bethel.

April 10 is an organ recital at 3 p.m. at Kauffman Museum. Both events are free and open to the public.

Bishop and Murray’s program will include eight selections from 44 Duos by Béla Bartók: “Hay Song,” “Wedding Song,” “Fairy Song,” “Dancing Song,” “Ruthenian Kolomejka,” “Rumanian Whirling Dance,” “Arabian Song” and “Transylvania Dance (Ardeliana)”; Duo Caprice for Two Violins by Peter Schickele (perhaps better known as P.D.Q. Bach); and Appalachian Duets by Maria Newman: “Heart O’ the Hills,” “Goin’ Fishin’,” “The Train,” “Mammy’s Little Lullaby” and “Granpap’s Fiddle.”

Originally from Washington State, Emily Bishop began playing the violin at age 4. She was selected as an Emerson Scholar at the Interlochen (Michigan) Center for the Arts, and was a top prize winner in the Marjorie Easley Concerto Competition and the Oklahoma Community Orchestra’s Young Artist Competition.

Bishop received a fellowship at the Eastern Music Festival in North Carolina, where she was a member of the inaugural Fellowship String Quartet. She has also attended the Marrowstone, Centrum and Evergreen Music Festivals and, this past summer, played with the Oregon Coast Music Festival.

Bishop is a member of the Wichita and Tulsa Symphony Orchestras and plays regularly with the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas and the Wichita Grand Opera.

She has a bachelor’s degree in violin performance from the University of Washington and a Master of Music degree in violin performance from the University of Oklahoma.

In addition to her performing career, Bishop taught in the Sooner Strings preparatory program at the University of Oklahoma, and she is currently the second violin coach for the top two groups of the Wichita Symphony’s Youth Orchestra program, as well as a founding member of their new Principal Chamber Program.

Hannah Murray is concertmaster of the Oklahoma Baptist and Shawnee Community Orchestra, associate principal second of the Tulsa Symphony and a member of the Wichita Symphony, the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas and the Tulsa Opera.

As a high school student, Murray received the prestigious Robert Mandura String Scholarship. She has twice been a top prizewinner in the University of Oklahoma Concerto Competition and in 2011 received third prize in the CICA International Concerto Competition.

Murray has toured Europe extensively as a member of the bands A Whisper in the Noise, WIVE and Bombee+. She has appeared at many indie rock, jazz and classical music festivals all over the country including SXSW, Marrowstone, the Jamey Aebersold Summer Jazz Workshop, the Hawaii Performing Arts Festival and the CICA International Music Festival.

She is a graduate of the Interlochen Arts Academy and has a bachelor’s degree in violin performance from the University of Minnesota. She earned her Master of Music degree from, and is currently completing her D.M.A. at, the University of Oklahoma.

Murray is on the music faculty at Oklahoma Baptist University, Shawnee, Mid-America Christian University, Oklahoma City, and the Barthelmes Conservatory of Music, Tulsa, and is an instructor with the Sooner Strings preparatory program at the University of Oklahoma.

Bethel College is the only private, liberal arts college in Kansas listed in the 2015–16 analysis of top colleges and universities in the United States, and is the highest-ranked Kansas college in the Washington Monthly annual college guide for 2015–16. The four-year liberal arts college is affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. For more information, see

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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.