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Alumni Success Stories

Move them with Music

Someday, we’re likely to see Amanda Clark on Broadway. At the tender age of 25, she’s already performed at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, brought home a handful of gold medals from various World Choir Games, and sang at Carnegie Hall – twice. All of this, she said, because she started at Corning Community College.

“I knew I needed to go to college to realize my performance dreams,” said Amanda Clark, who graduated from CCC in 2011. “I am glad I started at Corning, otherwise I would not have met Professor [Loueda] Bleiler and Professor [Will] Wickham. They were both instrumental in preparing me to go to music school.”

Amanda transferred all of her credits from CCC to Mansfield University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in music, graduating in December 2014. After successfully mastering the flute, clarinet, saxophone and piano, Amanda is now perfecting her guitar-strumming skills. She is currently involved with four community ensembles, is looking for an opera internship this summer, and has just turned in her application to the Stage Hand Union so she can go on tour, working backstage.

“I think it’s important to know every facet of the profession,” said Amanda, who also completed an internship at the Clemens Center where she did a bit of everything, from running sound and light boards to assisting the stage manager to prepare the theatre for performances. “Someday, I’d like to be a stage manager. Ultimately, though, I most enjoy performing.”

Amanda’s devotion to performing can be traced to the 2014 World Choir Games, which were held in Latvia. After placing second in the spiritual competition, behind the choir from South Africa, Amanda recalls that her emotions were at a “crazy height.”

“We performed for an audience who couldn’t all speak English, and yet, we moved them,” said Amanda. “The fact that our music reached them on a level that eclipsed words is an experience that I will never forget. Music truly is the universal language.”