SUU Percussion Ensemble to hold final concert

Southern Utah University’s Percussion Ensemble will be finishing the semester with a concert titled “Grabbing Happiness” on Saturday, April 23, at 7:30 p.m. The concert will take place in the Thorley Recital Hall and is free to the public.

“Grabbing Happiness” is directed by Lynn Vartan and will feature guest artist Jed Blodgett. The concert aims to explore themes of fun and happiness.

The concert will also feature a piece entitled “Oh Snap!” that was written by music major Em Sexton. It will be the first time one of Sexton’s pieces will be performed at SUU.

“After such a demanding year, it seemed perfect to explore fun and happiness in this concert,” said Vartan. “We are also thrilled to be featuring one of our students as a composer! Add to that the fun and beautiful music and rhythms of Brazil and you can’t help but smile!”

Blodgett attended virtual sessions with students to teach them about the styles and music of Brazil they will be performing at the concert. He also composed an arrangement of Samba Insalata for the ensemble.

Sexton explained that this concert will help to introduce Brazilian-style percussion to the community more and that it has been a great way for everyone involved to learn about the style.

“It’s been so much fun to rehearse in class, especially getting to do so from the viewpoint of both a performer and composer,” said Sexton. “It’s been an amazing opportunity to get to work with a group of incredible musicians for a piece I wrote.”

SUU’s Percussion Ensemble performs historically significant works in a wide variety of genres including contemporary percussion, novelty percussion and traditional non-western percussion music. The ensembles are made up of students from all majors, not just music majors, and welcome students of varied experience levels.

Article by: Tessa Cheshire
Photo courtesy of Marcelo Leal via Unsplash