Arts & Culture

UK Wind Symphony Performs 'October' Concert Featuring Pianist Jacob Coleman

image of UK Wind Symphony's "October" poster
UK Wind Symphony returns to the stage this weekend for a very special "October" concert.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 14, 2021) The University of Kentucky Wind Symphony will present its second live concert of the 2021 Fall Concert Season with a program titled “October,” featuring compositions by Carolyn Bremer, Eric Whitacre, Adolphus Hailstork, David Maslanka and Dmitri Shostakovich. The concert will begin 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 17, at Singletary Center for the Arts.

Two works from this weekend’s concert program are titled “October” — by Eric Whitacre and Dmitri Shostakovich respectively. Whitacre’s composition is a beautiful pastoral setting that is inspired by the composer’s fondness for the month of October and the changing of light and colors during fall season. Concluding the concert will be Dmitri Shostakovich’s "October, Op. 131.” This work is the only “symphonic poem” by Shostakovich, composed for the 1967 celebration of the 50th anniversary of the October Bolshevik Revolution — symbolizing “an ideal New World of freedom and fellowship” and the spirit of the revolution as it existed in the minds of Russians across the political spectrum.

Heralded African American composer Adolphus Hailstork composed “American Guernica” in 1983 and it is dedicated to “Carol, Addie Mae, Cynthia, and Denise — the four little girls killed by a bomb explosion at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama in 1963.” The work’s title refers to the famous mural by painter Pablo Picasso, which depicts the bombing of the Basque village Guernica by Nazi German and Fascist Italian warplanes on April 26, 1937, a tragic slaughter of mainly women and children. Hailstork’s score employs spatial notation and extended techniques to recount the bombing, outrage and aftermath of the American tragedy. Two gospel piano interludes, performed by Jacob Coleman, UK pianist and School of Music faculty member, serve to unify this work that is violent, spiritual and always compelling.

The UK Wind Symphony program will also include Carolyn Bremer’s “Early Light” — a quasi-overture/fantasy based on the Francis Scott Key’s “Star-Spangled Banner,” that will be conducted by graduate student Joshua Gillen. David Maslanka’s “Traveler” will open the second half of the concert, with a special dedication to the late Fred Schroeder, D.M.D., of Lexington, Kentucky.

Tickets are $12 for adults and $5 for students. Free tickets for UK students can be purchased in advance up to the day before the concert. To purchase tickets, contact the Singletary Center for the Arts ticket office at 859-257-4929, visit online at or visit the ticket office in person.

The Singletary Center is preparing to welcome audiences to events this semester but requests that everyone, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, remain masked at all times. The safety policy applies to students, faculty, staff and community visitors.

The School of Music at UK College of Fine Arts has garnered a national reputation for high-caliber education in opera, choral and instrumental music performance, as well as music education, music therapy, composition and theory and music history.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.