Sunday evening, I was at the home of Professor Emily Albu for the annual classics department picnic. The picnic – held to honor graduating seniors – featured wonderful food and musical performances by the students. Emily’s home is a playful replica of a Pompeiian model, featuring Greco-Roman busts, statues and fountains that left even a Greek speechless! However, the highlight of the evening was not just the house, but the students. They were some of the most amazing, smart, multitalented and cool students.
Aaron Heuckroth, a graduating senior with a double major in classics and microbiology, received citations for excellent performance in both disciplines. Aaron will also receive the College of Biological Sciences Medal next week for academic excellence. But his talents go far beyond Latin and microbiology.
Check out his blockbuster performances of what I call the “heavy-metal Caesar.” Aaron calls it “The Conquest” and “The Ides.” Both songs are on a short album titled Res Romanae (“Roman Things”) that he wrote, recorded and has performed as an independent project for the classics department. Aaron said Res Romanae is based on the famous works of writers like Vergil and Julius Caesar that he read during his studies of classics here at UC Davis and are meant to take the concepts, emotions and history of these time-tested works and present them in a modern, rock-heavy context.
I hope you enjoy the performances.
Aaron performs “The Conquest”
Aaron performs “The Ides”