28th annual Dana New Music Festival occurs April 23-May 2

The 28th annual Dana New Music Festival will occur from April 23-May 2 at Youngstown State University and at various locations in the area. The festival will feature performances by YSU students, faculty and guest artists in a wide variety of styles and media.

The principal guest composer will be Kathy Henkel, a frequent participant in the Dana New Music Festival who holds degrees from UCLA and California State University at Northridge. Henkel composes in a variety of styles, often featuring double-reed instruments. Her works have been played in England, Italy, Austria, Canada, Mexico, and across the United States.

Henkel will be represented in several chamber works throughout the festival. Her “Salve Regina” for voice and harp  and “Book of the Hours” for harp will played at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 29 at Sts. Peter and Paul Church in Youngstown. The concert also features soprano Colleen McNally-Harris and harpist Kirk Kupensky. Dana faculty involved in the preparation of Henkel’s works include Tedrow Perkins, oboe; Alice Wang, clarinet; and Alan Mosher, voice, as well as their respective students.

The festival’s Gala Concert occurs at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, May 2 at St. Columba Cathedral. The concert includes performances by the Festival Chamber Orchestra (under the direction of Dr. Robert Rollin), the St. Columba Cathedral Choir (under the direction of Daniel Laginya), and various chamber ensembles comprised of Dana faculty and students. The Festival Orchestra will premiere works by two junior Dana students: Carol Smolka’s “Images of Helen Keller” and Brandon Loewit’s “Ellie and Ezra.” In addition, the group will present “Short No. 4, ‘for Pete’s sake,’ ” a minimalist piece by Dana alumnus Jason Howard, and a klezmer piece by Rollin titled “By the Fireside.”

The festival also includes two recitals by guest artists. The duoARtia, comprised of pianists Holly Roadfeldt (Lafayette College), and Jeri-Mae Astolfi (University of Wisconsin), will perform at 8 p.m. on Monday, April 23 in Bliss Recital Hall. Both pianists perform contemporary chamber and solo music. The program includes works by Rollin and Westminster College composer Daniel Perttu (a world premiere) and Chatham University composer Federico Garcia. Works by Ravel, Bartók, O’Riordan, and Lutoslawski round out the program.

Internationally-acclaimed soloist, educator and concert accordionist Mary Tokarski will present a recital at 7 p.m. on  Wednesday, April 25 at Sts. Peter and Paul. In addition, Tokarski will deliver two lectures: “An Introduction to Composing for the Accordion” at 5:10 p.m. on Monday, April 23; and “New Music Resources for the Accordion” at 3 p.m. Both occur in Bliss Hall, Room 3150. Tokarski, who started playing accordion at age seven, has won a number of awards performing nationally and internationally as a soloist, with orchestras, and as a member of the “K” Trio. She is founder and director of the Tokarski Music Center in Connecticut.

Additional recitals will occur at 11 a.m. on Friday, April 27 in Bliss Recital Hall and at 12:1 5 p.m. on Wednesday, May 2 at the Butler Institute of American Art.  Performances will highlight chamber works by Henkel and will premiere several student compositions.

The Wind Ensemble, Dana Chorale and University Chorus will perform a concert at 8 p.m. on Monday, April 30 at Stambaugh Auditorium. Guest composer will be Jerry Ascione, a Dana alumnus who studied horn with William Slocum and played piano with the YSU Jazz Ensembles. Ascione played Assistant Principal Horn in the United States Naval Academy Band and won the jazz piano position with The Commodores of the United States Navy Band. He was leader and musical director from 1989-1997. During his distinguished career, he has written many Big Band and orchestral arrangements and has been head arranger for both the United States Naval Academy Band and The Commodores.

All concerts are free and open to the public. For more information, call the Dana School of Music at 330-941-3636.  For a complete calendar of events, visit  http://web.ysu.edu/fpa. 

© 2012 The Metro Monthly. All rights reserved.

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