Shayla Van Hal, guest organist, performs on Olivet's Ruffatti pipe organ.
Shayla Van Hal is a third-year doctorate student in Organ Performance at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University. She also serves as an associate instructor for the Jacobs music theory department and as assistant music director and organist at First Christian Church in Bloomington, Indiana. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Music from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, studying under Drs. Gregory Peterson and Brad Schultz. Her master's degrees in church music and music theory she received from the University of Kansas in Lawrence, working with Drs. James Higdon, Michael Bauer and Scott Murphy.
In her doctoral studies, Ms. Van Hal’s academic and musical interests have focused on underrepresented music from underrepresented composers, as featured by several of the works on this program. While primarily focused on the works of French Romantic and contemporary composers during her studies at University of Kansas, her master’s thesis on the little-known organ works of Armenian-American composer Alan Hovhaness sparked her interest in exploring organ pieces outside the typical canon. As she finishes her coursework this semester, her interest has been drawn to studying the unique musical and religious culture of Eastern Europe during the reign of the U.S.S.R.
When Shayla is not researching, studying, or performing, she enjoys spending time with her husband, Adam, playing games with friends, watching documentaries and historical movies and playing with her cat, Snowboots.
The Olivet Nazarene University School of Music offers comprehensive study in Composition, Education, Ministry, Performance and more. With seasoned faculty and numerous performance opportunities, every genre of music lives and thrives within the halls of the Larsen Fine Arts Center. The entire campus embraces the arts and culture with more than 500 students participating in music ensembles and chamber groups. Click here to learn more.