LUCAS 0049 (1)Bethany Music Professor Mark Lucas said “Sayanora” to Lindsborg and “Konnichiwa” to Japan this week when he embarked on a journey that will take him to Tokyo, Kumamoto, Hiroshima and Miyajima, and finally Kyoto for the International Symposium on Performance Science (ISPS).

The ISPS is run jointly by the faculties of Ryukoku University in Japan and the Royal College of Music in London. Lucas and colleague Andrew Homburg, a 1998 Bethany College graduate, were selected to present a poster and symposium at the prestigious international conference. They began working together on their presentation concept after Lucas invited Homburg to Bethany as a guest clinician for the “Real Men Sing” festival and they surveyed participants about why they sing.

Initially, Lucas had chosen not to attend the ISPS because of the cost of travel, but an alumni sponsor stepped up and made the trip possible.

“I honestly never thought we would be accepted,” Lucas said. “It is an honor to be selected and to have the opportunity to attend is just amazing.”

Lucas hopes to make connections while in Japan and broaden Bethany’s multicultural base. He will be working with the choir at the Japan Lutheran Theological Seminary in Toyko and visiting the Kyushu Lutheran College in Kumamoto where he will discuss possible student exchanges.

“I am excited to continue Bethany’s long tradition of international work especially in Japan,” Lucas said.

Lucas plans to keep in touch with his Bethany students and classes while in Japan and will be writing about his journey on his blog at