Library's Noonartsound Series Begins Tuesday, March 5

The O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library and St. Thomas faculty members Dr. Shelly Nordtorp-Madson, Art History, and Dr. Chris Kachian, Music, invite the campus community to noonartsound – a series of noontime talks on a variety of periods in art, sculpture, painting, costume history and more – coupled with guitar performances of period music from the 400 years of history covered by the series.

Nordtorp-Madson and Kachian have been performing full-length concerts together for 10 years, and the O'Shaughnessy-Frey Library is thrilled to announce this new series. The campus community is invited to enjoy their unique style and humor, along with beautiful, satisfying, yet “unstuffy” presentations of their art.

All of the presentations are from noon to 1 p.m. in the O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library.

Schedule for noonartsound

Tuesday, March 5 –  O’Shaughnessy Room (108)
“parlor 1590-1890”
Features the design, art and music – in what we call the living room, or the parlor.

Tuesday, April 2  –  Great Hall, north end, second floor
“queens prefer”
Highlights the sights and sounds of England in the late 16th century.

Tuesday, May 7 –  Great Hall, north end, second floor; or Room 108 (TBD)
Spotlights the look, feel and touch of the Latin American world.

Tuesday, Oct. 1 –  O'Shaughnessy Room (Room 108)
"all that jazz”
Brings you the art and music of the Jazz Era.

About the artists

Dr. Chris Kachian

A guitarist and professor of music at the University of St. Thomas, Kachian has performed throughout Europe, the Americas, South and Central America and the Far East as a recitalist, chamber musician and concerto soloist.

His American performances have included a significant number of works written in the past 25 years, many of them commissions. These include more than 30 works for guitar, including 20 concerti.


Your hosts for noonartsound: Shelly Nordtorp-Madson and Chris Kachian.

He has written Composer's Desk Reference for the Classic Guitar in consultation with more than 25 composers, published by Mel Bay Publications. He has been heard on Minnesota Public Radio, National Public Radio and American Public Media, including several appearances on “A Prairie Home Companion.”

Since 1984 Kachian has directed one of the largest guitar programs in the United States at the University of St Thomas. He has lectured in music of Europe, the Americas, the 20th century, the world, the United States, film, protest, mathematics, and guitar pedagogy and guitar literature.

He is the founder of St. Thomas' music business, recording arts and popular music degrees. From 2001 to 2005 he served as director of guitar studies for the Minnesota Music Teachers Association, for whom he led, wrote and edited the nation’s first comprehensive, multigenre guitar pedagogy syllabus.

In 2011 he wrote the film score for “Per Bianca,” which won Best Film at the Minnesota 48-Hour Film Festival and won a screening at the Cannes Film Festival.

Recent notable American premiere performances are Astor Piazzolla’s "Double Concerto" and Franz Schubert’s "Arpeggione Sonata." An ongoing series of baroque concerts, with keyboardist David Jenkins, with the Society for the Doctrinal Affectation of Baroque Music, an early music ensemble, and the Arpeggione Duo, a Stockholm-based cello and guitar duo specializing in new folk music, round out his concert career.

In 2012 he received national recognition from the Sigma Alpha Iota International Music Fraternity as a national arts associate and distinguished member.

Dr. Shelly Nordtorp-Madson

Nordtorp-Madson is the chief curator and a member of the clinical faculty in the Department of Art History. She holds an M.A. in medieval art history, a Ph.D. in design histor, and a technical diploma in dress design and draping. At St. Thomas she designs and mounts exhibits in O'Shaughnessy Educational Center and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in medieval art and dress history.

After spending four years on a nine-month language immersion program in Denmark, she moved to Minnesota, where she wandered around accumulating degrees and returning to Scandinavia whenever possible. Having worked at St. Thomas in a possibly record-setting number of positions, she now (in addition to curatorial work and teaching) presents papers annually on medieval dress and her most recent obsession: shape-shifting in the medieval period, particularly relating to otters.