Logan Thoennes ’21, Grand Rapids, Minn.
Major: Vocal Music Education
Please tell us about yourself.
My name is Logan Thoennes and I am a junior vocal music education major from Grand Rapids, Minn. Some of my favorite things to do are cooking, hanging out with friends, and jamming to some gospel music. I mainly spend my summers working. This past summer, I worked at Aldi, a grocery store, with the intent of saving up some money for the next year. When I’m not working, I try to spend time with family or play some casual golf. This past summer, I was able to go back to my high school in Grand Rapids and work with the choirs there. I was even given the opportunity to conduct a piece in the spring concert! It was a Beatles mashup of “Golden Slumbers”/“Carry That Weight” arranged by Mac Huff. It was such a phenomenal experience; one that I will remember for the rest of my life.
Why did you choose Concordia?
I came to Concordia when I was a sophomore in high school to watch a Christmas concert. I was so overcome with excitement for what the Christmas concerts were, and what they meant to the community, that I told myself, “That is where I am going to college.” So when it came time to start applying for colleges my senior year, Concordia was the first one I applied to, and when I got my acceptance letter, I knew I was heading to a place where I belong.
What motivated you to want to study music?
It was actually my high school choir director. He let me lead the choirs in warmups and sectionals, as well as being the person who would take over and lead rehearsals when he was gone for the day with an illness. I was also the choral manager my senior year there and was able to spend a lot of time in the office and work with choir finances for fundraisers, tours, and end of the year payout for the seniors. My director pushed me to develop my musical techniques and told me that I really have an ear for music and that I should look into pursuing music as a vocation. So I did and that’s why I am here!
What do you love about music?
Music allows me to express my emotions and thoughts, which is something that I want to use music for when I am an educator. My hope is to let music be a way for students to express themselves and use it as a way to be able to find contentment, stress relief, and to find solidarity in the company of their peers; not thinking of music as a competition between one another but as it is everyone working together to accomplish one goal, to make something beautiful.
What is your favorite aspect of Concordia?
Two things. The first being the environment that Concordia students bring with them. My fellow music educators especially bring such a positive, supportive, and welcoming environment that you can feel at home and know that you can make a mistake without being criticized or judged for it. The other is the choral program. As you can kind of guess, music is my passion and I love being able to share that love of music with other fantastic musicians.
What advice would you give Cobbers interested in participating in the music program?
Do it! While it is tough at times, don’t get discouraged by stress or frustration. You get to make beautiful music with amazing people every day, and the moments that you create with these people are precious and cherishable.
What’s next for you after college?
I hope to teach a choral program in either a high school or middle school and help that program grow. After some time, I would like to go back for my master’s degree in either conducting or voice pedagogy (I obviously have a little time to figure that one out) and potentially going for a doctorate degree further down the road and teaching at the collegiate level.