Ouachita Baptist University’s School of Fine Arts will present the OBU Percussion Ensemble in concert featuring a special guest appearance by acclaimed percussionist Dr. Scott Herring on March 18. The recital, which is free and open to the public, will be held at 7:30 p.m. in McBeth Recital Hall.
Herring serves as professor of percussion at the University of South Carolina as well as director of the USC Percussion Ensemble and Palmetto Pans Steel Band. Herring earned a Bachelor of Music degree from East Carolina University and a master’s degree and Doctor of Music degree from Northwestern University. He has performed all around the world in places such as China England, France, Germany and Spain and is often featured as a guest artist with other university percussion ensembles across the U.S. Herring currently performs with the RoseWind Duo and the Shiraz Percussion Trio.
Ensemble director Dr. Ryan Lewis, OBU assistant professor of music, noted that each of the pieces in the concert “has a place in my heart and an important purpose for my students.”
The concert will begin with Baljinder Sekhon’s “We Are the Weapons,” which Lewis describes as a piece that “juxtaposes both militaristic music portraying the sound of guns and violence and peaceful music performed on keyboard percussion instruments.”
Three of Elliot Cole’s “Postludes for Bowed Vibraphone” will be performed throughout the concert, which is considered one of the new classics of percussion chamber music. The vibraphone creates “a haunting, beautiful sound similar to a glass harmonica,” Lewis noted.
The concert will continue with sophomore music education major Aaron Breeding performing George Hamilton Green’s “Log Cabin Blues” with a marimba quartet.
The Percussion Ensemble’s final selection will be Ney Rosauro’s “Brazilian Myths” for percussion quartet. The piece “portrays five Brazilian mythological personalities” and is a “colorful, entertaining, beautiful, scary wonderful piece to rehearse and perform,” Lewis said.
Lewis and Herring then will perform a new marimba duet titled “All Systems Go” by Jeffery Dennis Smith. Herring will then conclude the program with a solo, “Tiger Dance.”
Members of the Ouachita Percussion ensemble include: Aaron Breeding, a sophomore instrumental music education major from Springdale, Ark.; Robert Desoto, a freshman mass communications major from Sheridan, Ark.; Drew Ervin, a senior music major from Springdale, Ark.; Carter Harlan, a junior instrumental music education major from Arkadelphia, Ark.; Chris Hogan, a senior instrumental music education major from Bartlesville, Okla.; Van O’Rorke, a freshman instrumental music education major from Hot Springs, Ark.; Elva Rosas, a junior business administration and finance major from Arkadelphia, Ark.; Abby Tipps, a freshman instrumental music education major from Sulphur Springs, Texas; Zack Willis, a freshman performance major from Redfield, Ark.; and Weston Wills, a freshman instrumental music education major from Norphlet, Ark.
By Chelsea Whelpley