Millersville University Percussion Ensemble | 2013 – 2014 Year in Review

James Armstrong, professor and instructor of percussion Millersville University Department of Music

The Millersville University Percussion Studio was extremely active during the 2013-2014 academic year. From performing concerts and recitals to hosting guest artists for events to being involved in community programs, the year proved to be successful in all areas. Here is a brief recap of the year’s activities:

The 2013-14 performance schedule began on September 8 with a faculty recital, given by Instructor of Percussion James Armstrong and titled “From Bach to Batá and Beyond.” This eclectic program included original and arranged works for solo vibraphone, including the U.S. premier of Armstrong’s “Tomorrows Never End,” traditional afro-Haitian and afro-Cuban religious music for solo batá, congas and vocals, and the electroacoustic classic “Temazcal,” for amplified maracas and electroacoustic sounds.

On September 20, for the close to the Music Fridays program, the percussion studio facilitated the very first “percussion parade” in downtown Lancaster in collaboration with Music For Everyone. This event catered to hundreds of music enthusiasts of all ages, parading the streets to the sounds of samba. In November several members of the percussion studio attended PASIC, the International Percussive Arts Society Convention, in Indianapolis, Ind.. On November 18-21, MUPE (Millersville University Percussion Ensemble) hosted New York-based percussion duo LOOP 2.4.3. Their brief residency included master class, duo performances and ensemble collaborations for the annual Fall Percussion Extravaganza. The fall semester closed with Glorious Sounds of the Season, where MUPE performed a holiday classic set to a Caribbean arrangement, as well as collaborated with the University Chorus.

Following intense early spring semester 2014 performance preparations, MUPE performed as guests at the inaugural Lancaster Bible College Percussion Festival, held on March 24. LBC hosted four percussion ensembles, with the event concluding with a collaborative effort with all ensembles on stage for the closing number. On March 29 percussion students Luke Helker (M.B.T.) and Rich Klimowicz (B.A.) presented solo recitals as part of their degree requirements. In their fourth season hosted by the MU music department and percussion studio, the Lancaster All Star High School Percussion Ensemble (James Armstrong and Stephen Goss, directors) traveled to Syracuse, N.Y., to participate in the Central New York PAS “Day of Percussion,” held on April 12.

The next day on April 13, MUPE hosted the annual “Percussion Ensemble Showcase,” that included performances by MUPE, Portal Percussion and the Lancaster All Stars. The event highlighted newly composed percussion ensemble literature, including the premier of Adam Silverman’s “Carbon Paper and Nitrogen Ink,” performed by the Lancaster All Stars with Temple University’s Phillip O’Banion as marimba soloist. That evening percussion student Matt Bracciante (B.A.) performed a solo recital. The Chamber and World Percussion Concert took place on April 25, featuring members of MUPE in small chamber ensemble settings and the debut of the West African Music and Dance Class, directed by James Armstrong.

MUPE then hosted the Pennsylvania PAS “Day of Percussion” on April 26. This prestigious event included several regional high school and college percussion ensemble performances, clinics by guest artists Darren Hazlett (West Chester University drumline), Colleen Clark (New York-based drumset artist) and Rolando Morales-Matos (Lion King, Ron Carter Quartet). Highlights of the day included a lunchtime “host” concert performed on the Winter Center loading dock, featuring James Armstrong and Portal Percussion, and an evening gala concert, featuring MUPE, the Lancaster All Star Ensemble, Portal Percussion, Steve Weiss Percussion Ensemble, solo performances by James Armstrong and Erik Forst (Messiah College) and a finale collaboration with MUPE, the Lancaster All Stars and guest artists Colleen Clark and Rolando Morales-Matos.

Following the end of spring semester, members of MUPE returned to facilitate another percussion parade to kick off Music For Everyone’s Music Fridays summer series. Studio members paraded the streets of Lancaster and then presented a short concert at Binn’s Park. The year’s activities came to a close on June 28, as the inaugural Summer Music Camps celebrated great success with James Armstrong as artistic director. Apart from all of the activities mentioned above, members of MUPE performed regularly on department recitals and audition days, performed with many Millersville University ensembles, taught applied lessons in the prep-division, collaborated and taught at various high school programs and participated in many recruitment and showcase events within the department.

 

Upcoming Events

  • October 30: “Unmask the World of Music, Business, and Technology” (all day event - Free for HS Students)
  • October 31 at 7:30 p.m.: CONCERT: "Jazz at the 'Ville: Trick or Treat with a Beat!" - Jazz Lab and Ensemble, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • November 2 at 2:30 p.m.: RECITAL, FACULTY: "Dueling Organists" - Ross Ellison, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • November 7 at 7:30 p.m.: CONCERT: "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus" - Choral Ensembles (Cantilena & Glee), in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • November 8 at 7:30 p.m.: CONCERT: "Music of the British Isles" - Choral Ensembles (UChoir & Chorale), in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • November 10: “Shadow Day - Spend-a-Day as a Music Major!” (all day event - Free for HS Students)
  • November 14 at 7:30 p.m.: CONCERT: "Haydn's "Farewell" " - Orchestra in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University
  • November 15 at 7:30 p.m.: RECITAL, FACULTY: "Trio Clavino in Concert" - Xun Pan & Trio Clavino The Ware Center
  • , $15 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • November 16 at 2:30 p.m.: CONCERT: "Home on the Grainger" CB/WE in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • November 16 at 7:30 p.m.: CONCERT: Fall Percussion Extravaganza in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • November 21 at 7:30 : CONCERT: Daniel Romain: Civil Rights as Democratic vistas, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $15 Gen; MU Students 5
  • December 6 at 4:00 : CONCERT: Glorious Sounds of the Season, Clair, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $16 General (Advance); $20 General (At Door); $5 Students with MU ID (Saturday Only)
  • December 6 at 7:30 : CONCERT: Glorious Sounds of the Season, Clair, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $16 General (Advance); $20 General (At Door); $5 Students with MU ID (Saturday Only)
  • December 7 at 2:30 : CONCERT: Glorious Sounds of the Season, Clair, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $16 General (Advance); $20 General (At Door); $5 Students with MU ID (Saturday Only)
  • Feburay 8 at 2:30 p.m. : SCHOLARSHIP: Vyner Competition, Steinman Hall, Ware Center. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • Feburay 20 at 7:30 p.m. : CONCERT: Jazz at the 'Ville, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • February 20: “Jazz Band Invitational” with Guest Artist Pete McGuinness
  • Feburay 22 at 2:30 p.m. : RECITAL, FACULTY: "Updated Ancients" - Anita Renfroe (with Sonia Lee), in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • Feburay 27 at 7:30 p.m. : CONCERT: "Winner's Circle" Orchestra, Steinman Hall, Ware Center. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • Feburay 28 at 7:30 p.m. : RECITAL, FACULTY: "Raising "Cane": A Devilishly Fun Single Reed Concert" - Christy Banks,in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • March 1 at 2:30 p.m. : CONCERT: "Wind Band Composition Award Winners" CB/WE,in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • March 20 at 7:30 p.m. : CONCERT: "Sing of Spring in Full-Swing" - Choral Ensembles (Women's, Glee, Chromatic Expansion),in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • March 21 at 7:30 p.m. : CONCERT: "Choral Gems of Germany, Vienna, and Venice" - Choral Ensembles (UChoir & Chorale),in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • March 29 at 2:30 p.m. : CONCERT: Percussion Ensemble Showcase (Perc Ens & Lanc All-Star),in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • April 2 at 7:30 p.m. : FACULTY RECITAL: "MU Faculty & Friends Recital" Sara Male, Jim Armstrong, Mike Vitale, Xun Pan,Ware center. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • April 17 at 7:30 p.m. : CONCERT: "Artistry and Art Works of Composer and Conductor, Dr. Timothy Mahr" CB/WE,in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • April 18 All Day : Single Reed Symposium (10th Annual), Millersville University. $15 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • April 18 7:30 p.m.: CONCERT: Jazz and Java (Jazz Bands), Gordinier, Lehr Room. $15 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • April 24 7:30 p.m.: CONCERT: Chamber/World Percussion Concert, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • April 25 All Day: WORKSHOP: Percussive Arts Society "Day of Percussion", Millersville University. $5-active PAS members; $10-general; Evening Gala Concert-$10-general/free MU
  • May 1 at 7:30 p.m.: CONCERT: "Orchestral Masterworks" Orchestra, Ware Center. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
  • May 3 at 2:30 p.m.: CONCERT: "Mostly Mozart Choral Collage Concert" - Choral Ensembles (Chorale, UChoir, Cantilena, Glee), Clair Hall, The Winter Center. $10 Gen; MU Students FREE with ID
 

If you would like to learn more about the music department, or other departments at Millersville University, please visit millersville.edu.

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