Sunday, April 19, 2015

HSU Percussion: Toccata, Canticle and A Woman’s Right to Drum

 HSU Percussion Ensemble breaks out all the instruments for classic works by Carlos Chavez, Lou Harrison and John Cage, and the World Percussion Group plays a traditional piece from Ghana that celebrates a woman’s right to drum, on Sunday April 19.

 Mexican composer Carlos Chavez combined Central American, Asian and European instruments in his 1942 Toccata for Percussion. “Musically, he combines exciting rhythmic passages and sudden dynamic changes with slower passages that employ exotic scales and timbres,” said Percussion Ensemble director Eugene Novotney. 

John Cage, who asked Chavez to compose the Toccata, is on the program with Second Construction  from 1940. Lou Harrison’s Canticle #3 adds flute and guitar to an array of percussion instruments. The HSU Marimba Band ends the set with folkloric music from Mexico, Guatemala and Africa. 

 Directed by Howard Kaufman, the World Percussion Group follows with a set that features “Takada,” Ghana’s traditional celebration of a woman’s right to drum. HSU student teacher Joe Bishop leads a suite of Mandeng drumming from West Africa. 

Percussion Ensemble and World Percussion Group perform on Sunday April 19 at 8 p.m. in Fulkerson Recital Hall. Tickets from HSU Ticket Office (826-3928) or at the door: $8 general, $5 seniors and children, HSU students with ID admitted free. Directed by Eugene Novotney and Howard Kaufman, produced by HSU Music Department.

Media: Eureka Times-Standard Urge, Mad River Union, North Coast Journal, Humboldt State Now.

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