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Latitude 49, brass tribute to highlight UT Spring Festival of New Music

The University of Toledo Department of Music Spring Festival of New Music will feature concerts at 7 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, April 1-3, in the Center for Performing Arts Recital Hall.

For 37 years, guest composers and performers have interacted with students and faculty during this annual event.

This year, a work by the winner of the student composer contest will be performed at the Faculty and Student Chamber Music Concert, which will kick off the festival Tuesday, April 1.

Latitude 49

Latitude 49

In addition, “Tribute in Brass” for brass quintet, composed by UT Professor Dr. David Jex, and “To the West Wind,” composed by Associate Professor Dr. Lee Heritage, will premiere at this concert.

Both compositions honor the memory of UT Professor Emeritus Bernard Sanchez, who taught for more than 30 years at the University’ he passed away last year.

“While I was composing this quintet, the news came suddenly — and with a great sense of shock and tragedy — that Bernie had died,” Heritage said. “I was deeply saddened and gradually realized that the second movement of my woodwind quintet was taking shape as an elegy to our great friend. The movement is set for flute solo, singing an angular, emotional melody, accompanied by somber chords in the rest of the quintet.”

“To the West Wind” will be performed by the Toledo Symphony Woodwind Quintet. The instrumentalists will be Joel Tse, flute; Michele Tosser-Smith, oboe; Georg Klaas, clarinet; Sandra Clark, horn; and Gareth Thomas, bassoon.

The “Tribute in Brass” quintet will be performed by UT faculty members Jex, Alan Taplin, Dan Harris and Andrew Rhodes, and will feature guest trumpeter David Kosmyna, a UT alumnus who is a professor of music at Ohio Northern University.

An eclectic mix of new music in a variety of genres will be in the spotlight Wednesday, April 2. A funk, fusion quartet called The Good, The Bad and The Blues! will perform a set of original songs. The group was among the International Blues Challengers semifinalists of 2013 in Memphis.

In addition, UT graduate student and teaching assistant Christina Eck, an electronic music composer and singer-songwriter, will perform original works from her disc, Diamond in the Rough. Stephen Mariasy, a UT film/video student, will present his new composition “Raindance,” all realized by virtual-instrument, computer-based digital sound.

And David Mariasy, senior lecturer of music technology, will debut his new composition, “Requiem for Violin and Digital Orchestra.” Performing on the work will be violin soloist Cecilia Johnson, a member of the UT strings faculty. Video projections produced by Holly Hey, UT associate professor of film, will be part of the concert.

Concluding the festival Thursday, April 3, will be guest artist Latitude 49. The mixed-chamber ensemble explores new sounds while showcasing songs by contemporary composers.

For more information on the free, public concerts, go to utoledo.edu/comm-arts/music.

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