The Belmont Percussion Ensemble is comprised primarily of graduate and undergraduate percussion majors from the School of Music.

The purpose of the ensemble is to provide students with an opportunity to explore the world of chamber music through modern percussion composition. Performance repertoire ranges from mainstream percussion ensemble standards to new compositions and premieres. Stylistically, the ensemble covers a wide range of material featuring compositions from classical, jazz, rock, and world music categories.


John Jay Hooker — Liberty & human dignity

What are our legal rights to a civil death?

A lawyer in many high profile cases, John Jay Hooker has brought his training and personal charisma to bear on important social issues.

"It is the ultimate civil right," John Jay said, "to be able to die with dignity, while you still have some choice in the matter."

As a legal mind, he is responsible for bringing to pass the famous Baker vs. Carr case that resulted in the law of the land known as “one man, one vote.” 

Running for governor of Tennessee at the height of the civil rights movement, he encountered opposition to his fight for civil rights that has made him a living legend.


Patricia Glaser Shea — Ending the silence that gives violence power

How can we work to end violence against women and girls by engaging men and boys?

Patricia Glaser Shea has always had a passion for justice and equality.

So it’s no wonder she found herself leading the YWCA of Nashville & Middle Tennessee, whose mission is eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. In her nine years at the helm, Pat has helped shape conversation on the epidemic of domestic violence, expanded services to women and children, and ensured the financial stability of the 117-year old non-profit.


Chris Crumbly — Our Journey to Mars

How can  past innovations in transportation show us the path to Mars?

Chris Crumbly manages the Spacecraft/Payload Integration and Evolution Office of the Space Launch System (SLS) Program.

In this capacity, he is responsible for managing the development of SLS spacecraft and payload interfaces, as well as technical innovations that will increase the performance and decrease the cost of America’s next-generation heavy-lift rocket for human and scientific exploration beyond Earth’s orbit.


Joel Dinerstein — Why cool matters

What is the definition of 'cool' and why is it essential to social innovation?

Joel Dinerstein is the author and curator of American Cool: a photography and popular culture exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution.

Dinerstein has been writing and lecturing on the concept of cool for more than a decade and for 15 years he has taught a course entitled, "The History of Being Cool in America." Joel is the Clark Endowed Chair in American Civilization and the Director of American Studies at Tulane University.


Sally Taylor — The beautiful dilemma of our separateness

What is the nature of human perception and expression?

In 2012, Sally Taylor founded Consenses, a global, multidisciplinary, artistic collaboration involving 140 artists from around the world.

It is the mission of Consenses to promote tolerance, empathy, creativity and peace by providing art as a language and a lens through which to see ourselves, each other and our world more compassionately and expansively.


Jenna Jordan — Leadership targeting of terrorist organizations

Why doesn't 'decapitating' the leadership of terrorist organizations destroy them?

Jenna Jordan is an assistant professor in the Sam Nunn School of International Affairs at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Jenna received her Ph.D. in political science from the University of Chicago in 2011, M.A. in Political Science from Stanford University, and B.A. in International Relations from Mills College.


Emily Sider – Bringing radio to the digital age

What makes radio worth sharing?

Emily Siner is a journalist who tells stories about how people experience the world and how things work.

She is an enterprise reporter at Nashville Public Radio, where she covers a wide range of topics, including business, higher education and technology. She has also reported for NPR, the Washington Post and the Chicago Sun-Times.


Kristine LaLonde & Yiaway Yeh – Officers of Innovation for Nashville & Davidson County

How can a city build infrastructure for innovation?

Kristine LaLonde & Yiaway Yeh are Co-Chief Innovation Officers of Nashville and Davidson County.

Yiaway Yeh’s career has taken him from Africa to Silicon Valley, from boardrooms to latrine construction sites. All the while, he has been driven by a desire to see communities and government work together to build the collective good. 

Kristine LaLonde supports creative ideas and people as they solve community challenges. She builds teams that combine passion and pragmatism to create lasting change has been the driving force in Kristine LaLonde’s career in politics, government, and teaching.

Derri Smith – The importance of being human

How do we interrupt the the inhuman cycle of human trafficking?

Derri Smith is the Founder and Executive Director of End Slavery Tennessee (ESTN).

ESTN is an anti-human trafficking organization working to promote healing of human trafficking survivors and strategically confront slavery in the state of Tennessee.


Eddie George, Emcee


Millions know Eddie George as a record-setting superstar who distinguished himself at The Ohio State University, for the Tennessee Titans, and the NFL.

Audiences also know his work as an actor who made his stage debut in Amun Ra Theatre’s ‘God’s Trombones,’ performed at Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC), and as the title roles in ‘Julius Caesar’ and ‘Othello’ for Nashville Shakespeare Theatre.



Chatterbird is a Nashville-based alternative classical music collective, dedicated to exploring uniquely orchestrated chamber music.

Celebrating genre-bending works featuring alternative instrumentation and interdisciplinary collaboration, chatterbird strives to create meaningful concert experiences that connect with every listener.