The St. Edward High School Performing Arts Programs provide students with opportunities to explore and refine talents in music and theater arts, develop character and acquire leadership skills. Students improve in areas of self-awareness, creativity, confidence and artistic sensitivity while learning to master the skills necessary to present outstanding collaborative performances in a supportive environment.
ROBERT W. BURNS, DIRECTOR OF PERFORMING ARTS
Mr. Robert Burns has a Bachelor of Music Education Degree from Baldwin-Wallace College and a Masters of Music Education from VanderCook College of Music where his major instruments were clarinet and saxophone. He has taught at St. Edward for 24 years. Under his direction the marching band has earned “Superior” ratings in OMEA State Finals seven times and the concert band earned a rating of “Superior” in national competition in New York City. In 1998 he reintroduced choir into the curriculum, a program that has consistently grown in size and quality even since.
Mr. Burns currently directs the Theatrical Presentations, Orchestra, Men's Chorus, co-directs the Concert Band and serves as Fine Arts department Chair. He has directed 43 stage productions at St. Edward, composed music for the concert band and marching band (including several competition shows), and is experienced in using music sequencing, recording and notation software. His interests outside music include photography and cinema - especially silent and foreign films.
ANGELO KORTYKA, ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF PERFORMING ARTS
Angelo Kortyka, St. Edward Class of 1998, is the band director at Saint Edward High School. His duties include directing the Marching Band, Concert Band, Symphonic Band, Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Combo, Pit Orchestra and teaching Music Technology and Music Theory. Prior to this appointment, he was director of bands at Chattanooga Central High School in Harrison, TN. Mr. Kortyka has also worked as faculty at Pecos High School, Woodward High School, Sul Ross State University, Lee University, and Xavier University. Furthermore, he has worked with numerous school band programs in Ohio, Texas, Tennessee, and Georgia, and had an active career as a tuba player with numerous ensembles.
Mr. Kortyka attended Tennessee Technological University (B.M.), University of Cincinnati – C.C.M. (M.M) and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (M.M.Ed.) In 2013, he received the status of Board Certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. Some of his primary teachers and mentors include: R. Winston Morris, Joe Herrman, Dr. William Lee, Tucker Jolley, and Dr. Timothy Northcut.
Since beginning his career as a band director, Mr. Kortyka has been an active arranger and drill writer for marching bands, initiated commissions for new concert band works, and has been an advocate for the arts in schools. He is an active member of O.M.E.A. and A.S.B.D.A. He strongly believes in the power of an education steeped in the arts, and the value of teaching aesthetics to people of all ages.
LISA HIRZEL, DIRECTOR OF LITURGICAL CHOIR
Mrs. Lisa Hirzel has a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education from Bowling Green State University and a Master’s Degree in Education from Cambridge College. Her undergraduate major was Choral Conducting/Voice. Mrs. Hirzel taught 22 years in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District where she directed concert and marching bands, concert and show choirs, and school plays and musicals. She is a graduate of St. Joseph Academy, and a product of the SEHS Performing Arts Department as well.
At St. Edward, Mrs. Hirzel directs the Liturgical Choir, Assists with the Marching Band, and works on the Edwardian Players’ Productions. She enjoys choral arranging and performing onstage in local community theatre. Her husband, Tim and their four children are also graduates of the SEHS Performing Arts Program.
The music program includes Concert Band, Marching Band, Jazz Band, Orchestra, Men's Chorus and Indoor Percussion Ensemble. Click here for the Music Program page.
The Edwardian Players, the SEHS drama troupe, present two shows each year. It is one of the school’s largest extra-curricular activities. Students are involved in all aspects of production. In addition to performing on stage, students participate as members of stage crew (building and managing sets and props), technical crews (running lights and sound) and performing in the pit orchestra. Click here for the Theater Program page.