Arts & Culture

Concert Exploring Percussion Dimensions Features Student Composer From UK

UK Percussion Ensemble performs "Mechanical Ballet" by Anders Koppel.


LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 6, 2017) Dimensions of time, interval, texture and space will be the focus of five extremely musical and physical works at the next University of Kentucky Percussion Ensemble (UKPE) concert. The free public concert will begin 3 p.m. Sunday, April 9, at the Singletary Center for the Arts Recital Hall.  

The UK Percussion Ensemble concert features a world premiere composition by Francisco Perez, a percussion graduate student in the UK School of Music from Pflugerville, Texas. He re-worked his own composition “Tesseract,” originally written for solo vibraphone and pre-recorded mallet keyboards, to orchestrate it for full percussion ensemble. "Tesseract," as Perez describes it, "is the result of my exploration between the multiple aural 'dimensions' unique to these instruments and the rhythmic capabilities they so naturally manifest. Rather than leading the listener through a programmatic narrative, the soloist acts as a sort of constant between the evolving layers and textures throughout, much like the tesseract serves as a point of reference to the fourth dimension."

Brian Blume’s “Scenes from the Woods” is a quartet written for a circle of marimbas. As Blume states in the program notes, "This piece is a look back at some of the special times I spent in the woods near my parents’ house: a fast-paced game of tag or hide-and-seek; the quiet moments of solitude and reflection; a mysterious, foggy evening; the sun’s rays slicing through the canopy of trees; and making the most of a rainy day."

“Tristano Tocata” by Alejandro Viñao is based on a riff by Lennie Tristano and pays homage to this innovative and influential jazz musician whom history has neglected to some extent. Tristano’s riff is longer and melodically and harmonically more complex than a typical rock riff. The music is less about "what" happens to the riff than about what happens "with" the riff at any point in time.

The UK Percussion Ensemble, conducted by James Campbell, is internationally recognized for its excellence and innovative programming and has won the prestigious Percussive Arts Society Collegiate Percussion Ensemble Contest five times.

For more information on the UK Percussion Ensemble concert, contact James Campbell, director of Percussion Studies at UK School of Music, at 859-257-8187.

UKPE is one of several ensembles housed at the UK School of Music in the UK College of Fine Arts. The school has garnered national recognition for high-caliber education in opera, choral and instrumental music performance, as well as music education, music therapy, composition, theory and music history.

photo of Francisco Perez
photo of UK Percussion Ensemble 2017 spring concert poster

UK is the University for Kentucky. At UK, we are educating more students, treating more patients with complex illnesses and conducting more research and service than at any time in our 150-year history. To read more about the UK story and how you can support continued investment in your university and the Commonwealth, go to: #uk4ky #seeblue