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

  • September 8 at 2:30 p.m.: The Faculty Recital for James Armstrong, percussion, in the Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This event is $10 for general admission and free for students with Millersville ID.
  • September 21 at 4:30 p.m.: The Senior Recital for Chris Koehler, guitar, in the Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This event is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required.
  • September 21 at 07:30 p.m.: The Junior Recital for Chad Wynn, vocals, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This performance is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required.
  • September 22 at 02:30 p.m.: The Faculty Recital for Dr. Anita Boyle Renfroe, Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This performance is open to the public. Tickets cost $10 for general admission; MU students are free with ID.
  • September 23 at 3:00 p.m.: The Daniel Roumain Master Class in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Visual and Performing Arts Center. This event is free and open to the public.
  • September 28, at 7:30 p.m.: The Senior Recital for Nathanael Dazinger, piano, Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This performance is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required.
  • October 5 at 4:30 p.m.: The Junior Recital for Emma Noble and Andrea Kurnat, cello, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This performance is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required.
  • October 5 at 7:30 p.m.: The Junior Recital for Sarah Newswanger, piano, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This performance is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required.
  • October 6 at 02:30 p.m.: The Millersville University Wind Ensemble in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This event is $10 for general admission and free for students with Millersville ID.
  • October 18 2013 at 7:30 p.m.: Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Lab Band in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This performance is open to the public. Tickets cost $10 for general admission, MU students are free with ID.
  • October 19 at 4:30 p.m.: The Senior Recital for Chelsea Snow, vocals, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Visual and Performing Arts Center, Millersville University. This event is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required.
  • October 19 at 7:30 p.m.: The Senior Recital for Elina Sergeyev, piano, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This event is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required.
  • October 31 at 9:00 a.m.: Music Business and Technology Open House, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This event is free and open to the public.
  • November 2 at 7:30 p.m.: The Junior Recital for Sharon Ho, piano in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This event is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required.
  • November 3 at 2:00 p.m.: The Senior Recital for David Mengel, trumpet, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This event is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required.
  • November 3 at 4:30 p.m.: The Senior Recital for Jennifer Kelman, vocals, in Biemesderfer Concert The Winter Center, Millersville University. This event is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required.
  • November 15 at 7:30 p.m.: To the Colors with The Millersville University Orchestra, Concert Band, and Wind Ensemble, in Clair Performance Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This performance is open to the public. This event is $10 for general admission and free for students with Millersville ID.
  • November 16 at 7:30 p.m. : Faculty Recital for Jose' Garcia and Kristin Sims in Steinman Hall at The Ware Center , Millersville University Lancaster. This event is $10 for general admission and free for students with Millersville ID.
  • November 20 at 7:30 p.m.: The Fall Percussion Extravaganza, in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This event is $10 for general admission and free for students with Millersville ID.
  • November 23 at 7:30 p.m.: Choral Ensembles Concert in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, The Winter Center, Millersville University. This event is $10 for general admission and free for students with Millersville ID.
  • Note: To obtain tickets (whether it’s a paid event or free), you can stop by the ticket office in the Student Memorial Center at, 21 S. George St. (Room 103), the ticket office at The Ware Center, 42 N. Prince St., you can call 717-872-3811, or reserve them online at www.muticketsonline.com. The ticket offices are open Monday through Friday 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. The Winter Center and The Ware Center ticket offices will be open one hour prior to show time.

 

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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