When Ian Goedert started his first semester at Waynesburg University, 15 credits made up his schedule. By the end of that semester, he was down to nine credits.
The reason for this was that his original major, journalism, wasn’t working out the way he had intended.
Towards the end of his freshman year, he fully figured out that original major wasn’t for him and switched to pursue a degree in the fine arts department, where he stayed for the next three years.
This past Monday, Goedert, who’s official degree will be in arts administration with a concentration in music, finished his on-stage career at Waynesburg with his senior recital.
Goedert, whose primary instrument is the cello, wanted to have his recital be somewhat of an ode to music history.
His choices ranged from the Baroque period to the 20th century, and those two eras, despite being immensely far apart, are Goedert’s two favorite time periods in music.
“I think the more eras you learn to play, there are definitely distinct styles to each of them, you definitely become more diverse as a player,” he said. “I think that’s important.”
Ronda DePriest, professor of instrumental music and director of the music program, is teaching the class confirmation that Goedert is performing for a grade in. DePriest also made note of the variety of eras and music featured in Goedert’s recital.
“He has a classical piece, a romantic piece which would be the 1800s all the way to the 20th century,” she said. “He has it kind of spread across the [history].”
While Goedert felt comfortable in his second major, the switch did bring a few challenges, with stage fright being one of the biggest. While Goedert had the benefit of prescribed beta blockers, given to him after a studio recital last year didn’t go according to plan, to help him work past his fear, simply getting used to playing in general was a big part of Goedert becoming more comfortable to doing so in front of a crowd.
“Just through playing more in front of more people more often,” he said. “The big thing was spring last year, my studio recital didn’t go so well because I was so nervous. I was literally quaking.”
Because Goedert didn’t enter the fine arts department right away, DePriest got the impression that he felt he was behind in his new major. With time though, Goedert grew aware of— and confident in— his talents. Goedert’s overall growth in fine arts was demonstrated by the fact that his senior recital was, for the most part, his creation and he was in charge of organizing it.
“He’s learned to look very realistically and realize that he does have a lot of skills, and he has a lot of intelligence, a lot of intellect…” Depriest said. “He’s come such a long way.”
Goedert’s respect for music history, his self-assurance and his overall personality, for DePriest, will lead him to a successful career after Waynesburg.
“I think he’s a great guy to be around,” she said. “He really is eclectic with the types of music that he likes, and I think that will serve him well in this area as his well. I think he’s found confidence in himself that should translate very well in a career.”
Looking back, had Goedert not made the switch from writing to music, he’s not sure if he’d have lasted at Waynesburg University.
“I honestly don’t know if I’d still be here,” he said. “First semester freshman year, I came in with 15 credits and came out with nine. That’s how bad it was. So it was pretty rough, but I think switching really did save me, honestly.”