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PE - 4/2/14 - Butler North

 Youngstown State University

Percussion Ensemble


Dr. Glenn Schaft – Director of Percussion Studies

Bryan Teeters – Graduate Teaching Assistant

2 April 2014

Butler North, 8 P.M.





Normandy Beach – 1944                                                                David Gillingham (b. 1947)

            On June 6, 1944, at dawn, British and American forces landed on the beaches of Normandy in an elaborate amphibious operation. A total of 425,000 American, British, and German men lost their lives in the ensuing conflict. Normandy Beach - 1944 was composed in commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of this important, yet tragic day that changed the course of World War II. The work is cast in three sections. The first is dark and mysterious characterizing the preparation and eve of D-Day. The bowed marimbas allude to distant bugle calls. Gathering momentum, the second section depicts the tragic conflict on D-Day including references to the "Star Spangled Banner" and "America, the Beautiful." All motion ceases and the final section or epilogue suggests the tragic aftermath.

            Normandy Beach was commissioned by James Coviak and the North Farmington Hills High School Percussion Ensemble and was premiered at the 1994 Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago. Notes by David Gillingham



Music for Five Pieces of Wood (1972)                              Steve Reich (b. 1936)

            Music for Pieces of Wood is scored for five sets of tuned claves and consists of three sections each systematically decreasing in length. Reich’s composition technique involves a slow process, whereby each player successively adds to the original rhythm. The three sections consist of a shorter rhythmic cycle – section one = 12 notes, section two = 8 notes, and section three = 6 notes. Each player begins with a one-note pattern and adds notes, one at a time, until a complete pattern results. This process is then repeated with successive players. The music allows the listeners to perceive various tempi and rhythmic patterns. Notes by Glenn Schaft



Un Misterio (1993)                                                              traditional Guatemalan

                                                                                                            arr. William Cahn


Jesusita En Chihuahua (1995)                                          traditional Guatemalan

                                                                                                            arr. Steve Chavez

Mexican and Guatemalan Marimba Selections

Since the late 19th the marimba has served as icon and instrument in Mexico’s southernmost state Chiapas, as well as it southern neighbor Guatemala. The marimba is heard in many different contexts such as fiestas, restaurants, civic and even religious functions. In fact, it is difficult to walk down any street without hearing the sound of las maderas que cantan (the wood that sings). During the early twentieth century Chiapan marimba ensembles began to tour the United States and Europe. Their repertoire was quite eclectic and remains so to this day. As there are no symphonic or string/wind chamber groups in Chiapas, the marimba serves the dual function of performing (and thereby sustaining) traditional music of the region and nation, as well as performing arrangements of the repertoire that a symphony orchestra or concert pianist might perform elsewhere. Above all, the marimba unites the people of Chiapas and Guatemala. Notes by Glenn Schaft.




Selections from Forms Of Things Unknown (2011)                         Dave Morgan

            Airy Nothing


            Better Angels

            The Flow



            Unknown Unknowns

“Forms Of Things Unknown” reflects my contemplation of the artistic possibilities inherent within various dichotomies, including pitched and “non-pitched” percussion, strict notation and improvisation, metal and wood, sticks and hands, harmony/melody and rhythm, loud and soft, tradition and innovation, cerebral and visceral, and space and time.  A wide variety of music and artists are reflected and referenced in the piece, including ritual music of Northern Brazil, the Congo, and Egypt; global percussionists including Glen Velez and Nana Vasconcelos; jazz vibraphone artists such as Dave Samuels, David Friedman, Gary Burton, and Mike Manieri; the Minimalism of Terry Riley and Steve Reich; and seminal percussion works by Western composers including Iannis Xenakis, John Cage, and Toru Takemitsu.  Notes by Dave Morgan

“Forms” was commissioned in 2011 by the Youngstown Percussion Collective, a YSU student organization advised by Glenn Schaft, was recorded in 2012, and subsequently released on and CD CD’s are also for sale in the lobby during tonight’s concert. Notes by G. Schaft



Raptures Of Undream (1998)                                     Bruce Hamilton (b. 1966)


Generally, the music I compose reflects my wide-ranging musical interests. My aesthetic involves a balance: a mixture of musical ideas, concern for pure sound and energy, and aspects of theater and humor. Naturally, being a percussionist has had a major impact on my approach to rhythm and gesture. Often, my pieces integrate my experience with rock, funk, jazz, and Latin music into a modernist framework. Raptures of Undream was written for the Indiana University Percussion Ensemble. The piece is scored for six players, armed each with a floor tom tom and a cymbal. The work is divided into four sections delineated by tempo. Rhythmic/melodic motives are presented and developed through a series of divergent textures and rhythmic guises. A prominent theme is the contrast between contrapuntal sections and unison passages. Essential to the piece is the sense of “groove” which serves as the underpinning to the sometimes wild (and rapturous) rhythmic excursions. Notes by Bruce Hamilton

Percussionist and composer Bruce Hamilton was born in 1966 in Philadelphia and grew up in New Jersey and currently lives in Bellingham, Washington. He received a BM in percussion performance and Performer’s Certificate from Indiana University and completed a doctorate in composition there. Hamilton performances focus primarily on recently composed music and he is an active music educator. Notes by Glenn Schaft.





Charles Battaglia, Warren, OH

Aaron Graneto, Canfield, OH

Cory Grant, Victor, NY

Matthew Hayes, Coshocton, OH  

Shayna Jarvis, Salem, OH

Roger Lewis, Youngstown, OH 

Nathan Negro, Wooster, OH

Damon Poole, Mayfield Heights, OH 

Nicholas Sainato, Boardman, OH

Kevin Scales, Riverdale, GA

Troy Schaltenbrand, Allison Park, PA    

Bryan Teeters, Knox, PA 

John Guido Vitullo, Austintown, OH  


Special thanks to Avedis Zildijian, Remo, ProMark. Dynasty, and Black Swamp Percussion for their product and artist support.


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