FSU’s Department of Music Will Host Percussion Ensemble in Fall Concert
Frostburg State University’s Department of Music will present its Percussion Ensemble in a virtual fall performance on Wednesday, Oct. 28, at 7:30 p.m. The concert is free to view online, click the red 'Join Stream' button at right to join the livestream. If you can't join us for the livestream our music recitals are available for viewing anytime on YouTube: Frostburg Music Department. (In-person attendance at the live concert is available for 50 members of the FSU community on a first-come, first-served basis.)
Directed by Dr. Mackenzie Jacob LaMont, the concert will feature Michael Udow’s “A Bird Whispered, ‘Your Children Are Dying,’” Anthony Cirone’s “Symphony No. 1 for Percussion” and David R. Gillingham’s “Point of Reckoning.”
Percussion Ensemble students include Ryan Barber, Jacob Hunt, Kamonte Johnson, Nora Kopit, Preston Leshinskie, Joseph Louise, Reiss Mikula, Matthew Payne and Julia Seddon.
In Udow’s “A Bird Whispered, ‘Your Children Are Dying,’” four performers playing crotales encircle the audience, accompanying an opening marimba solo, which then moves into a melodic cross-rhythmic section for chimes and four hand clappers/slapsticks. This dissolves into the final section where the quintet moves to marimba playing in the style of an African mbira (thumb piano). Retired from The Santa Fe Opera and the University of Michigan, Udow has a distinctive compositional voice, and quite often, his rhythmically engaging complex contrapuntal lines with dense timbres weave effortlessly with memorable melodic lines.
Cirone’s “Symphony No. 1 for Percussion” was written in 1971 during his long tenure as a percussionist at the San Francisco Symphony and a professor at San Jose State University. Some of his most lasting contributions to the world of percussion, besides his compositions, teaching and performance history, are his many educational method books.
Originally composed for string orchestra, Gillingham’s powerful “Point of Reckoning” has been scored for percussion ensemble by Nathan Daughtrey. Inspired by the hymn “O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing,” the work begins quite frantically and in confusion with motives of the hymn occurring sporadically. A slow, lyrical section follows, again using motives of the hymn within a texture of rich diatonic clusters. The tempo of the first section segues with the frantic confusion, returning only to be overwhelmed by a dramatic presentation of the hymn accompanied by a very rhythmic ostinato. The work progresses to a joyous coda. A professor of music at Central Michigan University, Gillingham has an international reputation for the works he has written for band and percussion.
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, musical performances before live audiences will not be held until conditions warrant. However, the Department of Music is planning a series of online presentations. Links will be posted at www.frostburg.edu/concerts. For info, contact FSU’s Department of Music at 301-687-4109.
Wednesday, October 28 at 7:30pm to 8:30pmVirtual Event
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