Fri. Jun 21st, 2024

On Thursday, Nov. 13, a group of WCU students presented new poetry from their compilation CD, “An Evening in Winter”. The project consisted of original poetry written and read by Luke Stromberg, Adam Wassel, Zach Burkhart, Luke Bauerlein, Matt Stromberg, and Dan D’Aprile. All of the verse was read over original music composed and performed by Adam Wassel on keyboard and accordion with Andrew Baraneck on guitar and keyboard.

According to Luke Stromberg, the idea for a compilation of original poetry set over keyboard music had come into consideration approximately two summers ago.

“We thought that the idea would die out over time, but it stayed with us until we eventually got together and set to work on the project,” Stromberg said. The result of the collaboration was a recording of 20 poems by six student writers. All of the poetry was read by nine different voices and accompanied by Baraneck and Wassel’s original musical compositions.

The student project was funded by a College of Arts and Sciences grant for Student Research which allows students to pursue independent academic research or creative projects.

Faculty members from the WCU College of Arts and Sciences, department of English, and the Poetry Center provided the support and motivation for the students’ project. The final result, a CD entitled “An Evening in Winter,” was engineered by Hear the Ocean studios and released by Sire Press.

The performance given on Thursday was a release party celebrating the cumulative efforts of students, faculty members, and personal mentors who all played a part in the creative project. Poetry like “The Litany of the Bone” and “A Few Small Things about John Benson” proved that the project reached across spectrums of drama, literature, and music as the accompanying soundtrack emphasized the themes of personal strife and self-discovery.

This program was truly unique, the multidisciplinary emphasis found in An Evening in Winter proved creative potential of students from a variety of fields. Overall, the release of the CD “An Evening of Winter” displays the positive effects of creative collaboration between students, alumni, faculty members, and advisors at WCU.

Jen James is a second-year student majoring in English with a minor in music. She can be reached at

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