Graduation year: 2019
Hometown: LeClaire, Iowa
Majors: Music performance (saxophone), French
Minor: Music composition
Activities: Augustana Symphonic Band, Jazz Ensemble, Kali Yuga free improvisation group, Saxophone Quartet, Augustana Symphony Orchestra
Post-grad plans: Attend New England Conservatory of Music in Boston for my master’s in saxophone performance
In my junior year of high school, I decided to take saxophone lessons with Dr. Randall Hall. That changed my entire life. I progressed so much in just one year that I knew I wanted to continue to study with him through college. He helped me to figure out what I want to do with my life, and I cannot thank him enough for what he has given me.
Are you where you thought you’d be when you first came to campus?
Absolutely not. I am so much farther. I came to campus as a shy first-year. I don’t think I ever expected to be at the level I am. I am going to a top-level music conservatory next year to get my master’s. That is insane to me. On top of that, I am also graduating with a degree in French, something that I didn’t expect to pursue.
Who helped you get to where you are now?
Dr. Randall Hall, Dr. Jacob Bancks, Dr. Taddy Kalas and Dr. Janina Ehrlich, to name a few. They helped me in so many ways to figure out who I am. They have also provided me with so many amazing opportunities and believed in me the whole way, even when maybe I didn’t.
Being able to attend NASA (North American Saxophone Alliance) with my saxophone studio. We’ve met so many important saxophonists from the United States as well as put Augustana College on the map as an excellent place to study saxophone. I would also say the tour to Spain we took my sophomore year with the Augustana Symphonic Band. We performed for amazing people and saw so many beautiful places. An absolutely amazing experience.
What surprised you?
That I’m not really all that shy and that I can make a difference in the music world. I came to Augustana worried that I wasn’t going to be successful in my music career, but with the help of my professors, I know I am going to be. Again, I owe them so much.
How did you use Augie Choice?
I studied abroad in Paris with Dr. Randall Hall and Dr. Meg Gillette. It was one of the most amazing times of my life. I came back from Paris with a better sense of who I was and who I wanted to be.
What will you miss the most?
My wonderful professors in the music department. They are the people who have made the most impact on my life and who I will want to stay in touch with for the rest of my life. That and the beautiful spring seasons we experience on campus. There is nothing quite like taking a walk around campus and enjoying all of the flowers and spring colors.
Advice for the Class of 2023?
Study what you love to study. You hear a lot of people saying that they only chose a major or a career path because their parents wanted them to. I think that if you have a passion for a field, you should go for it, and if your family has doubts, prove them wrong. If you have enough dedication and passion, you will be successful, and probably very happy.
“I am very proud of all Lexie has accomplished at Augustana. I am delighted that she has decided to pursue graduate studies in saxophone performance at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston—my alma mater. In addition to her performance achievements, she has also distinguished herself in other areas of music, including improvisation, composition and scholarship. As a double major in music performance and French, Lexie models Augustana’s interdisciplinary mission. I am excited to see where her career takes her.”