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Two Graduate Percussion Recitals By Sean C. Millman SUPERVISORY COMMITTEE: KENNETH BROADWAY, CHAIR LESLIE ODOM, MEMBER MARGARET BUTLER, MEMBER THES I S PERFORMANCES IN LIEU OF THESIS PRESENTED TO THE COLLEGE OF FINE ARTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF MUSIC UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2013
S ummary of Performance Option in Lieu of Thesis Presented to the College of Fine Arts of the University of Florida In Partial Fulfullment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Music TWO GRADUATE PERCUSSION RECITALS By Sean C. Millman May 2013 Chair: Kenneth Broadway Major:Music first graduate recital explored many elements of percussion less often seen in academic recital situations. This event featured, in performance vibraphone work Fanta sy on a Shona Theme, and two masterworks in the percussion repertoire: the multi contribution to the marimba repertoire, Velocities. This recital was closed by a performance of the traditional fife and drum tune, The Downfall of Paris. While marimba and multi percussion solos are nothing new at academic recitals, hand drumming, traditional rudimental snare drumming, and African music performed on vibraphone represent a decided turn t oward the exotic. On February 28, 2013, Mr. Millman performed a recital of percussion repertoire standards, crossing divides of genre, style, and culture. This program consisted of, in performance order, Bonham a tribute to Rock and Roll drumming by Chr istopher Rouse; Losa a marimba and vibraphone duet inspired by Flamenco music by Eckhard Kopetzki, The Invisible
Proverb Emmanual marimba solo Three Variations for Solo Dancer an d the concerto, Prometheus Rapture: Seven Legends for Snare Drum by Sean Beeson. These works represent not only diverse styles of percussion playing, but also diverse styles of music from four different musical cultures.
Tiriba Kan B. Michael Williams (b. 1954) Fantasy on a Shona Theme Glenn Kotche Rebonds Iannis Xenakis (1922 2001) Velocities Joseph Schwantner (b.1943) The Downfall of Paris Traditional B. Michael Williams is Professor of Music and Director of Percussion Studies at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, South Carolina. He holds the B.M. degree from Furman University, M.M. from Northwestern University, and Ph.D. from Michigan State University. Active as a perform er and clinician in both symphonic and world music, Williams has performed with the Charlotte (NC) Symphony, Lansing (MI) Symphony, Brevard Music Center Festival Orchestra, and the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, and has appeared at several Percussive Arts Soc iety International Conventions. He has written articles for Accent Magazine, South Carolina Musician and Percussive Notes and has made scholarly presentations on the music of John Cage and on African music at meetings of the College Music Society and Per cussive Arts Society. In 2004, Dr. Williams received the Winthrop University Distinguished Professor Award, the highest honor given to a Winthrop faculty member. Bio from bmichaelwilliams.com This seven minute djembe solo draws its inspiration from the tr aditional tiriba rhythm from Guinea, West Africa. Written in 12/8, it opens with a rubato section that mimics the opening rhythmic "call" of a lead drummer. Tempo is soon established and the material seeks to replicate the complex syncopation and cross rhy thms found in an entire drum ensemble. Several sections allow the player to interpret the notation and inject some personal improvisation into the piece. At 120 bpm, the sixteenth note and sextuplet rhythms require solid technique and familiarity with the many djembe strokes and sounds. Terry O'Mahoney, April 2006 ed. of Percussive Notes Fantasy on a Shona Theme by Glenn Kotche originated from a mbira melody transposed to vibraphone. The opening right hand melody emulates the cyclical, rolling feel of Shona mbira music. A metrically ambiguous feel is retained by using melodic lines that interlock, weave, and constantly evolve. Heralded by The Chicago Tribune for his "unfailing taste, technique and discipline," Glenn Kotche's eclectic performances and original compositions have explored the creative use of rhythm and space through various projects in percussion the past 18 years. Born in 1970 in
Roselle Illinois, Glenn graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Music in music performance from the prestigious University of Kentucky Percussion Program, studying under James Campbell. Following graduation, his various stints with groups and ensembles have resulted in participation on over 80 albums to date, including three recorded solo works, the first two entitled Introducing and Next. Glenn's third solo effort of original compositions, Mobile was released on Nonesuch Records in 2006. Kotche was featured on the cover of the August 2007 issue of Modern Drummer magazine and can be seen performing on the 2006 Modern Drummer Festival DVD. Iannis Xenakis was born to Greek parents living in Romania, and his early interests included music and mathematics. While enrolled at Athens Polytechnic to study engineering, Xenakis began to pursue music in earnest. These complementary interests engineering and music led to an encounter (and later employment) in Paris with the architect Le Corbusier, who introduced him t o two leading members of the musical avant break through work, Metastaseis the composer unified architectural space (itself a manifestation of mathematics) and music. His music also reflects an interest in both elec tronic music and in Greek culture, especially folk culture and ancient Greek drama. Xenakis composed the solo percussion work Rebonds in 1987 89, and dedicated it to percussionist Sylvio Gualda. The composer has written the following note: Rebonds is in two parts, a and b The order of play is not fixed: either ab or ba without a break. The metronomic indications are approximate. Part a only uses skins: two bongos, three tom toms, two bass drums. Part b uses two bongos, one tumba, one tom tom, bass drums and a set of five wood blocks. The tuning of the skins and the wood blocks should extend over a very wide Bio from laphil.com Known for his dramatic and unique style and as a gifted orchestral colorist, Joseph Schwantner is one of the most prominent American composers today. He received his musical and academic training at the Chicago Conservatory and Northwestern University and has served on the faculties of The Juilliard School, Eastman School of Music, and the Yale Sch ool of Music, simultaneously establishing himself as a sought after composition instructor. Schwantner's compositional career has been marked by many awards, grants, and fellowships, including the Pulitzer Prize in 1979 for his orchestral composition After tones of Infinity and several Grammy nominations. Among his many commissions is his Percussion Concerto, which was commissioned for the 150th anniversary season of the New York Philharmonic and is one of the most performed concert works of the past decade. Schwantner is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Bio from www.schwantner.net Velocities (1990) is a marimba solo commissioned for Gordon Stout, William Moersch, and Leigh Howard Stevens, and is considered one of the most difficult works in the repertoire. The
work is in three major sections in a loose rounded binary form, and uses pitch set relationships rather than common practice tonality. Velocities is subtitled Moto Perpetuo, extremely accur ate given that the entire work is straight 16 th notes, excepting 8 bars late in the second section which use 32 nd note ornaments. Despite this, there is great opportunity for musical expression through contrast between technical motives, metrical treatment and grouping of the constant 16 th notes, explicit dynamics, as well as the many highly descriptive expressive terms Schwantner uses, The Downfall of Paris is a standard of fife and drum repertoire as well as common practice material for rudimental drummers. The work has something of a violent history, coming out of the military march tradition of the 18 th tune associated with the early, peaceful part of the French Revolution, until it became part of the was added as British soldiers associated it with their eventual goal, and it is reported to have actually been played as the army eventually entered Paris in both 1814, until Wellington himself forbade it during the second invasion in 1815. The victorious British continued to use the tune after the conflict, and it has since spread to its current popularity. Damm, Robert, J. Percussive Notes, January 2011.
Bonham Christopher Rouse (b. 1949) Colin Aebli, Nic Cabiness, Patrick Gulick, Caitlin Jones, Patrick Mongomery, Rickie Santiago, Ivan Trac Losa Emmanuel Sejourne (b. 1961) Patrick Montgomery The Invisible Proverb Russell Hartenberger (b. 1944) Okarche Drumtalker Darkwa ter Sky Ghost Caitlin Jones, Patrick Montgomery, Rickie Santiago, Ivan Trac ----------Three Variations for Solo Dancer Eckhard Kopetzki (b. 1956) Mysterious Love Dance on a Shattered Mirror Memory of a Mystery Prometheus Rapture Sean Beeso n (b. 1985) Theft of Fire Golden Metropolis Pandora Opens Her Gift Vulture on the Morrow Wrath of Zeus Hope from Hercules Much in the drumming community is owed to John Henry Bonham (1948 1980), the famed Led Zeppelin drummer. Christopher Rouse pays tribute and homage to his legacy with this work for The drumset player holds the work together, primarily with the same groove Bonham used in Led Zeppelin IV yet the work as a whole bears more of a resemblance to Moby Dick, first recorded on Led Zeppelin II and featuring an extended drum solo, known to go for up to thirty minutes in live performances. The battery of percussion instruments used includes a massive variety of nonpitched percussion, as well as timpani many
recording kits. Rouse did not simply transcribe so los and write for multiple players however; many of the macro rhythms the piece creates are essentially impossible for a single drummer to create. The work features two major accelerandos at the opening and closing, as well as multiple solos, both by ensem ble players, and a true drum solo right before the final climax. Losa is a Marimba and Vibraphone duet, written to invoke the style of Spanish Flamenco dancing. As such, it bears some characteristics of a guitar transcription, including moments of comping as well as rhythmic patterns idiomatic to the guitar, while taking full advantage of the possibilities of the two keyboard instruments via virtuosic runs and a large range. The work is repetitive, with similarities to both the classical sonata rondo form a s well as more modern popular forms. Sejourne treats the duet in two different ways, occasionally writing each lyrical quality, and at other points simply giving each player the same line in harmony, creating a single unified keyboard sound. The Invisible Proverb was written by Nexus member Russell Hartenberger for percussion quintet, using African drum styles in a Western ensemble setting. It is a programmatic work, f ollowing the journey of a young boy, Okarche, as he quests to become a true drummer; he will meet the Drumtalker, a wise old drummer who points him on the path, he will visit the Darkwater, where he will eventually meet the mythical Sky Ghost to complete h is transformation. As the work progresses, it steadily uses more and more complicated rhythmic ny as an important followed by the first true melody of the work, a rhythmic section set to the same harmonic structure, and a return to that melodic phrase to concl ude the work. Three Variations for Solo Dancer by Eckhard Kopetzki, is one of the more idiosyncratic works in the solo marimba repertoire. Originally written for the 4 1/3 octave marimba, the work calls for the performer to play on the frame of the instr ument, or in the case of the larger five octave, to mount a similar sounding instrument over the unused bars. In addition, it uses a Bartok like tonality, operating on a pitch rather than in a key, with perhaps the most common harmonic feature being chroma the work, requiring the performer to play octave verticals in both hands for almost the entire movement, and introducing the wooden sound in the coda, simulating a tap dancer. The finale, a more complicated rhythmic and structural form, as well as passages involving interdependence between each hand, such as the metered oscillations of the right against the melodic motion of the left that is the basis for much of the middle section.
Promet heus Rapture, Seven Legends for Solo Snare Drum is a modern concerto for snare drum. The piece was commissioned by Evelyn Glennie, with the premiere having been recorded, and available for viewing online, with famed marching percussionist Jeff Queen. In a ddition to the demands placed on the performers, the work functions as a sort of tour de force for the instrument itself, as it contains styles appropriate to almost every function of snare drumming, including old rudimental field styles, orchestral playin g, use of techniques and implements common to drumset playing, and modern marching percussion idioms. The movement titles follow Greek myth, as Prometheus steals fire, giving it to humans in defiance of Zeus; Apollo visits the forge of Vulcan to create wea pons for a war on mankind; Pandora is created as part of the punishment for humans receiving fire; and she is given gifts of all evil things. Finally, the hands of Hercules.
Mr. Millman (b.1989) is a native of Atlanta, GA, and began playing percussion at the age of 5, taught by Tony Iaquinto Subsequent teachers have included Rick Dietrich, Bill Wilder, and Dr. Ken Broadway at the University of Florida. Mr. Millman received both the Bachelor of Music (2011) and Master of Music (2013) degrees from the University of Florida, both specializing i n Percussion Performance. While at Florida, he played with the Wind Symphony and Orchestra, spent four years with the Florida Drumline, took part in multiple stagings of operas and American Musical Theatre productions as well as the Percussion Ensemble an d Sunshine Steelers Steel Pan Ensemble. In addition, in February 2013 Mr. Millman performed with the UF Wind Symphony at Carnegie Hall in New York. In the future, he hopes to earn a DMA and teach percussion at the collegiate level as well as continue perfo rming extensively.