Alumni Highlights - Hannah Ryan

Name: Hannah Ryan
Major at ISU: Bachelor of Music in Music Education
Graduation Year: 2003
Hometown: Ames, IA
Current Residence: Johnston, IA







What were you involved in during your time at ISU:
I was a piano major. I also sang in Cantamus, accompanied Iowa State Singers, played oboe in Wind Symphony, took piano, organ, and oboe lessons, and accompanied many vocal students. I was also an Assistant Director with the Ames Children's Choirs program for four years and even had the Chorale perform at my senior recital.

What do you currently do for a living:
I am currently one of the Choir Directors at Johnston High School. I teach Cantus, our top Chamber Choir, Cantate Treble Choir, Mixed Choir, and Synergy show choir.

Can you share a particularly interesting or inspiring story that occurred in your career?
Most recently, the Cantus Chamber Choir was selected as a performing choir for the Midwest American Choral Directors Association Convention. We performed at the convention on Thursday, February 8th in Omaha. It has been a dream of mine for many years to have a choir selected for this prestigious honor. It was an incredible experience. It was also really special to perform at St. Ambrose Cathedral on February 4th with other Iowa choirs selected to perform in the convention including Iowa State Cantamus.

Are there other ways that you participate in your community and/or hot to engage as a Citizen Artist?
Our choirs and show choirs perform throughout the community regularly. Music is thriving in Johnston and it is really special to be a part of a community that supports and encourages music and the Arts as much as Johnston does. I am honored to teach in Johnston and love working with the students we have here.

How did your time at ISU prepare you for your career?
My time at ISU prepared me very well for my career. I have always said that the music department is a hidden gem. I believe that the education I was given at Iowa State is top-notch and is so special in such a large University. It always feels like walking 'home' when I enter the music building; even 20 years later!

What was your favorite class while you were at ISU? Why?
Piano lessons with Dr. David were the absolute best! To have the opportunity to work with such a brilliant educator was a joy and an honor! I also loved singing in the choir and accompanying many friends.

How was your involvement in music and theatre beneficial in different parts of your life?
I am a huge advocate we all need music and the Arts in our lives to keep our souls happy. In a world where too much technology drives our lives, music provides a way for us to be HUMAN; to have feelings, emotions, and a way to express them.

Any words of wisdom for current or prospective students?
Enjoy your time, embrace every opportunity you are given, and keep the joy alive!