Greg Ramsdell, new director of the School of Music & Theatre
Greg Ramsdell began working at Heidelberg in 2008, after a brief stint down south while earning his DMA from Kansas University and taking his first appointment at the University of Central Arkansas.
Originally from Galion, Ohio, Greg was happy at the prospect of returning home to Ohio to serve as the professor of vocal music education at Heidelberg University. After three successful years in this position, Greg was promoted to the Director of Choral Activities in the fall of 2011.
Greg’s first interaction with Heidelberg, however, was back when he was in high school. “One of my greatest influences in music was my high school choir director, Kate Keller-Butterfield, an alumna from Heidelberg who fostered my love of music,” Greg said, “When I’d tell her my ideas or things I wanted to do, she’d always tell me do it! Chase after it!”
So Greg did. A career in music involves rejection, and Greg experienced it. “I was told no, and different doors were shut for me,” he recalled. Thinking back on the encouragement Greg received from Ms. Keller-Butterfield, though, he didn’t allow himself to be discouraged for too long. “I kept chasing what I was meant to do, and now feel that I’m really doing my purpose.”
“It’s so important to me to be able to give something back to the university that gave me such an important influence in my life,” Greg explained. “It’s so meaningful to me, the power of one life, and the ripples a single person can make.”
Now, Greg is taking on the role of director for the entire school that his choir director attended. After a month on the job, Greg is ready to help the School of Music & Theatre grow and collaborate. “I always knew where I fit into the big picture, but now I’m learning where I fit into the big Heidelberg picture. I’ve met with so many people, and learned all the stuff I didn’t know!”
As Greg continues in this new role, growth and collaboration are at the forefront of his mind. “When I was young, I wanted to be able to speak with authority, stand in front of a room and just be in charge – but the longer I’ve been here, the more it’s been a spirit of collaboration and learning how important it is to be humble,” Greg reflected. “We all have to take 100% responsibility for the education, and success, of our students and ourselves to be 100% successful.”
Greg has already begun new methods of increasing clear communication, and new ideas to integrate everyone’s gifts and talents together. As we look forward to 2024 and beyond, we’re excited to see what Greg will bring as the new Director of the School of Music and Theatre.