Music

NCNW hosts Women’s Empowerment Concert

Submitted by NCNW of BGSU The National Council of Negro Women Inc, Bowling Green State University Section, was established Spring of 2008. NCNW serves its national purpose and mission which is to lead, develop, advocate, inform, and unify the African American Women of Bowling Green State University’s campus and its surrounding communities as they support their individual, family, and societal efforts and lifestyles. NCNW implements our mission through bi-weekly meetings, community service, workshops, annual events, awareness and fundraising. NCNW hosts a variety of events to fulfill our organizational purpose and mission. This Saturday we will be hosting our first big event, which is our 8th Annual Women’s Empowerment Concert. This year our theme is “Evolution of a Black Woman: More Than a Stereotype.” Our concert is unique because it consists of students using their special talents to empower woman through rap, dance, song, spoken word, etc. This year we have some hardworking students with very raw power performing. The second portion of the concert is dedicated to a special guest performance. This year, R&B singer Cree and her live band from Detroit, Michigan will visit Bowling Green State University giving us an exclusive and uplifting performance. There will also be food, drinks, interactive games, a live DJ, other women’s organizations and raffle for exclusive art pieces of black women donated from different artists in many different states. Concert will be November 19, 2016 from 6-9PM in Oslcamp 101. Tickets can be purchased in the student union this week from 11-3PM and at the event. Tickets are $3 for students, $5 for non-students, and $1 for NCNW members. To receive a discounted ticket, guest are allowed to bring in a canned good or feminine product to receive $1 off the ticket price. Donations will be given to the Cocoon Shelter in Bowling Green, Ohio. If you have any additional questions regarding the concert, feel free to contact myself or the chair of this event Khadirah Hobbs at khobbs@bgsu.edu.


Sweet things to taste, hear, & read on tap at library

From WOOD COUNTY DISTRICT PUBLIC LIBRARY Concerts, a holiday cookie bake-off and tasting, and an author visit help usher in the season at Wood County District Public Library (251 North Main St., Bowling Green). Give yourself a break from the hustle and bustle of the season, and stop by the library for these programs. Tuesday, November 29, 7 pm. Students in piano studies at Bowling Green State University’s College of Musical Arts return to the WCDPL Atrium for another virtuoso concert. This last concert in the BGSU Fall Concert Series at the library features selections from the work of nine master composers, including that of Bach, Beethoven, Schumann, and Brahms, as well as the work of Alexander Scriabin, Gabriel Fauré, Alberto Ginastera, and Sergei Prokofiev. Sunday, December 4, 2 pm. The Great Holiday Bake-off takes place in the Library Atrium. Bakers and cookie tasters are needed! Tasters are invited to come and sample cookies, then vote on their favorites. To enter the bake-off, bakers are asked to bring 2 dozen cookies and their recipe. Multiple cookie entries are accepted, how ever bakers should a recipe for each type of cookie type. For purposes of determining contest winners, bakers will be divided into 2 categories: 12-years-old and younger and 13-years-old and older. Saturday, December 10, 1 pm. Meet the Author, Tom Lambert. 1st Floor Meeting Room. Imagine acquiring a house guest known to you only as “Earl”. All the evidence before you suggests that Earl in fact may be America’s beloved—albeit long dead–humorist and author, Mark Twain. Who is this person really? That’s the question bedeviling Tom in Living with Earl. Tom Lambert, a life-long resident of Bowling Green comes to WCDPL to talk about his debut novel, Living with Earl. Book signing to follow Mr. Lambert’s talk. These programs are free and open to all.For more information, contact WCDPL at 419-352-5050 and find details at wcdpl.org/calendar.  


Musical friends release new recordings

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News A couple recordings with local ties have recently been released. Master guitarist Skip “Little Axe” McDonald has visited Bowling Green on several occasions. Matt Donahue, in the Popular Culture Department at Bowling Green State University, is both a fan and supporter of McDonald and has hosted the guitarist, who grew up in Dayton and now lives in England, for stays in Bowling Green. The most recent visit was to perform at the Black Swamp Arts Festival. On a couple earlier occasions, McDonald played shows at Grounds for Thought. That’s where this CDm “One Man – One Night”  was recorded back in March, 2015. McDonald’s sound is an amalgam of the various colors of African-American music. At the heart is blues, jazz and gospel. He’s also played hard rock and, as a session player for Sugarhill Records, he backed Grandmaster Flash is the early days of rap. He’s blended this into a smooth mix that delivers pointed messages and hard truths. When he has the audience join him in singing “tear the system down,” he seems prescient to what many are feeling in the wake of the presidential election. And he reminds the listeners that they’ll encounter people they met on the way up again on the way down. All this is backed by guitar mastery so assured it doesn’t call attention to itself. McDonald programs his own bass and drums tracks to provide a steady pulsating groove. The freshness of his guitar lines always imbues the music with a sense of spontaneity. Especially poignant is “My Only Friend” about falling onto the wrong path, and being trapped there. “Sin,” he sings, “is my only friend.” The recording is available at Grounds as well as at Culture Clash Records in Toledo. Another recent release with Bowling Green connections is “Ken Thomson: Restless.” Issued on LP and also available as a digital download, “Restless” features pianist Karl Larson with cellist Ashely Bathgate. Larson was one of the first graduates of the Doctor in Contemporary Music program at Bowling Green State University. Now based in Brooklyn, he returned to town earlier this year with the trio Bearthoven. Thomson has been to Bowling Green as well. He brought his hybrid jazz quartet Fast/Slow to town in 2012. One of the striking characteristics of the title piece for cello and piano is how romantic it is. Bathgate’s cello soars…


Black Swamp Fine Arts School expands music offerings with ensembles for kids & adults

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Both Sophia Schmitz and Betsy Williams discovered a passion for music at an early age. Schmitz, of Perrysburg, started playing violin at 3, and was gigging when she was 11. “My mom’s an artist and my family is very musical so I was surrounded by that.” Williams, the youngest of six children, grew up in northern Kentucky with a musical mother who had the entire family singing every morning. Schmitz started teaching when she was in high school, but even before that had a goal in mind. “Since I was 12 it’s been my vision to open a studio.” For her part as the youngest of six, Williams got a late start on violin lessons. The cost of lessons was an obstacle. Her mother had taught her piano and the musical basics. “I taught myself several instruments before I settled on violin.” Those experiences and passion have now taken shape in their new endeavors. Schmitz founded the Black Swamp Fine Arts School in January, realizing her dream of opening a studio. Williams teaches violin, viola and cello at the school. Both are graduate students in the Bowling Green State University College of Musical Arts. As a BGSU undergraduate Schmitz had a minor in entrepreneurship, and in one class she had to put together a proposal for a business. When she started figuring out how much it would take to open a music studio, she realized she could make it work.  So last fall she met with lawyers and accountants, and with help pulled together a studio in space at 500 Lehman Ave. in Bowling Green where she could teach violin, piano and dance, as well as offer a space to other professional musicians associated with the university to teach. She’d already been teaching in the area, but finding a space for lessons was always a chore. Students are not allowed to use university facilities. Williams was teaching as well. She’d already been working with orchestra students at the Bowling Green High and Middle schools. Schmitz said most teachers rent space, similar to what stylists do in a salon. Others, including Williams and the two dance teachers, were hired as independent contractors. The school now has 10 teachers and about 100 music and dance students. Now they want to make that joy of music available to more children and adults with a new ensemble program….


BGSU Arts Events through Nov. 23

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Through Nov. 21—“The Deathworks of May Elizabeth Kramner,” a mixed media installation by The Poyais Group, continues through Nov. 21 in the Dorothy Uber Bryan Gallery in the Fine Arts Center. The exhibit purports to be a re-creation by the Poyais Group of outsider artist Kramner’s (1867-1977) private lifework, a tent version of the town where she lived, with each tent representing someone who had died. Discovered by a team of anthropologists after her death but then lost in a fire, the installation was remade by the Poyais Group (Jesse Ball, Thordis Bjornsdottir, Olivia Robinson and Jesse Stiles) based on notes by one of the original anthropologists. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays, and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Free Through Nov. 22—“Criminal Justice?” an exhibit by activist artists Carol Jacobson and Andrea Bowers, investigates the attitudes and biases embedded in the U.S. criminal justice system. Jacobson is an award-winning social documentary artist whose works in video and photography address issues of women’s criminalization and censorship. Bowers’ video “#sweetjane” and drawings explore the 2012 Steubenville, Ohio, rape case and the citizens whose activism resulted in two rape convictions. The drawings reproduce the text messages sent among the teenage witnesses to the assault on an underage young woman. “Criminal Justice?” is on view in the Willard Wankelman Gallery at the Fine Arts Center. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays, and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Free Nov. 9—The Faculty Artist Series continues with guitarist Ariel Kasler. Kasler has performed at venues and events as diverse as the Glenn Gould Studio in Toronto, the Detroit Jazz Festival, the Grand Theater in London, Ontario, the Clore Center for Music and Dance in Israel, New Music from Bowling Green, the NASA regional conference in Urbana-Champaign, the Victorian College of Arts in Australia and Rutman’s Violins in Boston. The recital will begin at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free Nov. 10—The Visiting Writer Series features award-winning author Claire Vaye Watkins. She is the author of “Gold Fame Citrus” and “Battleborn,” which won the Story Prize, the Dylan Thomas Prize, New York Public Library’s Young Lions Fiction Award, the Rosenthal Family Foundation Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and a Silver Pen Award from the Nevada Writers Hall of…


Mikel Kuehn takes listeners on walk through his musical landscape on new CD

  By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Mikel Kuehn likes to take hikes. Oak Openings is a favorite location. He favors the wilder, natural environment to a more manicured landscape – “the messiness of nature… the entanglement of vines.” “To me, it’s really beautiful,” the composer said. That carries through in his compositions. They have a deceptive tangle of sounds, lines that stretch into the musical undergrowth reaching up, seeking light. As in nature, what may seem a disorder of trees, vines, leaves and their shadows, has an underlying order. In his compositions, Kuehn said, he wants listeners to go on a walk with him and appreciate the unruly beauty of nature. Kuehn, now on the cusp of turning 50, has just released his first CD devoted to his compositions. “Object Shadow” was released by New Focus Recordings in October. The recording features seven compositions, most written between 2004 and 2014. The outlier is the composition that closes the recording, “Between the Lynes,” which dates to 1994. This is the earliest piece in which he explores the textures and techniques evident in the later work. “It’s one of the first I’m happy with,” he said. “The pieces are all virtuosic,” Kuehn, who has taught at Bowling Green State University since 1998, said.  The performers are “all perfect.” The CD opening and closes with performances by Ensemble Dal Niente, a Chicago-based new music group. The opening “Undercurrents” features the entire 14-piece ensemble. The title piece, albeit in French not English, “Objet/Ombre,” features a 12-saxophone ensemble from BGSU with electronics that shadow their sounds. Another leading new music group Flexible Music appears on “Color Fields.” Three solo pieces for cello and electronics, guitar and marimba round out the program. Kuehn said he was able to record the CD thanks to a Guggenheim Foundation grant and an award from the Ohio Arts Council. Without that money, he said, “I never would have been able to do it.” Recording a piece for as many musicians as “Undercurrents” is especially costly, he said. “Undercurrents” was recorded by Dan Nichols in Chicago using 40 microphones. That provided a striking level of detail. When Kuehn traveled to Mount Vernon, just outside New York City, to work with engineer Ryan Streber, he had an array of sonic options. He and Streber, himself a Juilliard-educated composer, worked to realize the truest image of the piece. The mixing amounted to…


Berlin Philharmonic concertmaster will be guest soloist with BGSU orchestra

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS The Bowling Green State University Philharmonia will welcome violinist Noah Bendix-Balgley, concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmonic, for a return guest appearance Nov. 14. The program will feature two well-known pieces by Tchaikovsky, his Symphony No. 5 and Violin Concerto. The 8 p.m. performance will take place in Kobacker Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. A pre-concert talk on the music of Tchaikovsky will be held at 7:15 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall. Bendix-Balgley was appointed the Berlin Philharmonic’s concertmaster in 2014. He gave his first performance with the Bowling Green Philharmonia in 2015. Currently on a North American tour with the Berlin orchestra, he is making a side trip to Bowling Green to perform at BGSU. “We are absolutely thrilled to have Noah visiting Bowling Green to perform with the University’s orchestra, the BG Philharmonia. As one of America’s great violinists, having reached the pinnacle position of concertmaster of the world-renowned Berlin Philharmonic, he is an exceptional representative of the best our country has to offer in the classical music scene,” said Philharmonia conductor Dr. Emily Freeman-Brown, Professor of Creative Arts Excellence and BGSU director of orchestral activities. The opportunity for BGSU students to work with Bendix-Balgley is of great value, said Dr. William Mathis, interim dean of the College of Musical Arts. “Music students in the CMA have multiple opportunities to work with professional musicians throughout their degrees, but to have someone of Mr. Bendix-Balgley’s stature is a special treat to be sure,” Mathis said. “The impact of rehearsing, interacting and performing with a world-class artist is significant, motivating and inspiring — our students will never forget this experience. I daresay that the audience will never forget this concert, either.” Bendix-Balgley has built an international reputation as a violinist, appearing as a soloist with leading orchestras and in festivals winning top prizes in competitions in Europe and the United States. From 2011-15, he was concertmaster of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. His debut recital in Pittsburgh, in which he performed his own cadenzas to the Beethoven Violin Concerto, was named “Best Classical Concert of 2012” by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He also performed his own version of “The Star-Spangled Banner” for the Pittsburgh Pirates on opening day in 2013 in front of 39,000 fans. As a chamber musician, he has toured North America with the Miro String Quartet and, from 2008-11, was first violinist…


‘Gondoliers’ provides a comic & tuneful respite from dirty politics

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Maybe “The Gondoliers” is just what we need about now. With a political campaign rolling like a torrent of sludge to a messy conclusion, a frothy piece of social satire from another time is a welcomed diversion. The venerable team of Gilbert and Sullivan reminds us that being a doofus is just part of the human condition. Doesn’t matter if you’re royalty or gondolier, you are at heart a fool. But in the world of Gilbert and Sullivan even fools can spin off a tangle of intricate rhyme that precisely delineates the absurd world they inhabit. “The Gondoliers or the King of Barataria” was the team’s last hit back in the last decade of the 19th century. And Bowling Green State University Opera Theatre whips up a production that is true to the absurdist spirit of the original. The show is on stage tonight (Nov. 4) at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. on Kobacker Hall on campus. Advance tickets are $15 and $5 for students and children. All tickets the day of the performance are $20. Tickets can be purchased from the BGSU Arts Box Office at 419-372-8171 or at www.bgsu.edu/arts. The tale is a subversive fancy, so convoluted and contrived that when the character Luiz (Aaron Hill) repeats the story to Princess Casilda (Alissa Plenzler) she’s just as incredulous as the audience, though not nearly as amused. Casilda is the daughter of down-and-out royalty who married her off as a baby to a prince. When the prince’s family became Methodists “of the most bigoted and persecuting type,” the baby prince is whisked away by the Grand Inquisitor (Brett Pond) to Venice where he was placed with the family of a gondolier who had a son the same age. The father drank so much he forgot which boy was which, so now no one knows, except that stock figure in Gilbert and Sullivan operettas, the nurse. The entire play takes place waiting for the nurse’s arrival in the scene to settle the matter. The prince’s father has died in a revolt, so now the prince, whichever gondolier he is, is the king of Barataria. Those gondeliers Marco (Mark Tenorio) and Guiseppe (Luke Serrano) are the heartthrobs of a gaggle of farm girls, who refuse to select beaus until the handsome gondoliers decide whom to wed. The lucky girls are Gianetta (Hannah Stroth) and Tessa (Amanda…


BGSU arts events through Nov. 16

Through Nov. 21 – “The Deathworks of May Elizabeth Kramer,” a mixed media installation by The Poyais Group, continues through Nov. 21 in the Dorothy Uber Bryan Gallery in the Fine Arts Center. The exhibit is a purported recreation by the Poyais Group of outsider artist Kranmer’s (1867-1977) private lifework, a tent version of the town where she lived, with each tent representing someone who had died. Discovered by a team of anthropologists after her death but then lost in a fire, the installation was remade by the Poyais Group (Jesse Ball, Thordis Bjornsdottir, Olivia Robinson and Jesse Stiles) based on notes by one of the original anthropologists. Gallery Hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays, and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Free Through Nov. 22 – “Criminal Justice?” an exhibit by activist artists Carol Jacobson and Andrea Bowers, investigates the attitudes and biases embedded in the U.S. criminal justice system. Jacobson is an award-winning social documentary artist whose works in video and photography address issues of women’s criminalization and censorship. See story: http://bgindependentmedia.org/artist-documents-the-cycle-of-abuse-suffered-by-female-inmates/. Bowers’ video “#sweetjane” and drawings explore the 2012 Steubenville, Ohio rape case and the citizens whose activism resulted in two rape convictions. The drawings reproduce the text messages sent among the teenage witnesses to the assault on an underage young woman. “Criminal Justice?” is on view in the Willard Wankelman Gallery at the Fine Arts Center. Gallery Hours are 11 a.m. – 4p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays, and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Free Nov. 2 – The Faculty Artist Series features the BGSU woodwind faculty in an 8 p.m.performance in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free Nov. 3 – The International Film Series continues with the 2015 film “Le Dernier Loup (Wolf Totem),” directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud. Life is tenuous for humans and animals in the wonderfully filmed Mongolian steppe. The story presents a stark view of the region 50 years ago, during China’s Cultural Revolution, focusing on Beijing student who goes to live among nomadic herdsmen in 1967. The modern world imperils the ecosystem form the south, while wolves, who hold spiritual meaning for the indigenous people, threaten from the North. The screening begins at 7:30 p.m. Free Nov. 3-5 – The 16th annual Winter Wheat festival of writing celebrates writers and readers alike. Created in 2001 and produced by the Mid-American Review on the BGSU campus, the event…


BGSU arts events calendar through Nov. 9

At the galleries – “The Deathworks of May Elizabeth Kramer,” a mixed media installation by The Poyais Group, continues through Nov. 21 in the Dorothy Uber Bryan Gallery in the Fine Arts Center. The exhibit, a collaboration with the New Music Festival, claims to be a recreation by the Poyais Group of outsider artist Kranmer’s (1867-1977) private lifework, a tent version of the town where she lived, with each tent representing someone who had died. Discovered by a team of anthropologists after her death but then lost in a fire, the installation was remade by the Poyais Group (Jesse Ball, Thordis Bjornsdottir, Olivia Robinson and Jesse Stiles) based on notes by one of the original anthropologists. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays, and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Free Oct. 27–Creative writing M.F.A. students will read from their work at 7:30 p.m. in Prout Chapel. Free Oct. 27–The International Film Series continues with the 2012 German film “Oh Boy (A Coffee in Berlin),” directed by Jan Ole Gerster. A young man in the dreamy process of losing everything he has wanders through Berlin to the accompaniment of comedic mood music. His contemporary angst plays out on the black-and-white background of a city with a dark past. It’s never been so difficult to get a cup of coffee in a huge city. The screening will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Gish Film Theater in Hanna Hall. Free Oct. 27 – A performance of “Evelyn in Purgatory,” an award-winning dark comedy by Topher Payne, will begin at 8 p.m. in the Eva Marie Saint Theater located in the Wolfe Center for the Arts. Tickets can be purchased form the BGSU Arts Box Office at 419-372-8171, or visit www.bgsu.edu/arts. Advance tickets are $15 and $5 for students and children. All tickets the day of the performance are $20. (See story at http://bgindependentmedia.org/bgsu-cast-delivers-heavenly-performance-of-evelyn-in-purgatory/) Oct. 28–The exhibition “Criminal Justice?” opens in the Willard Wankelman Gallery at the Fine Arts Center with a 5:30 p.m. ARTalk by Carol Jacobsen in the gallery. A Stamps School of Art & Design faculty member at the University of Michigan, Jacobson is known for video and photography that addresses issues of women’s criminalization and censorship. Curated by BGSU Galleries Director Jacqueline Nathan, “Criminal Justice?” features activist artists Jacobson and Andrea Bowers, whose work investigates the attitudes and biases embedded in the U.S. justice system. A reception will follow the…


‘Tis the season for music of our time

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The New Music Festival at Bowling Green State University is a fall ritual. Just before Halloween, BGSU becomes the center of the contemporary music universe. Maybe that’s why this year’s event started on a macabre note – the opening of “The Deathworks of May Elizabeth Kramner.” The art installation transforms the Bryan Gallery in the School of Art into a village of the dead. The conceit of the work by the Poyais Group is that folk artist Mary Elizabeth Kramner created these tents as a recreation of her German village, each structure representing how a former inhabitant died. The viewer wanders about this village of the dead in darkness. The tents illuminate at odd intervals, and small organs set among the tents emit mournful chords. The viewer is suspended between life and death, between reality and fantasy. The mystery seeps into the bones. Yet festival, hosted by the MidAmerican Center for Contemporary Music,  celebrates the music of living composers. Presenting the expected is not in the festival’s mission statement. In another seasonal coincidence, this year’s featured composer is Dai Fujikura, who told the audience at the Composer Talk, that he was influenced early on by the musical scores of horror films. He was about 10, and growing up in Osaka, Japan. This was the music he loved to listen to. He was also drawn to composition because he was a mischievous piano student. He said if he didn’t like a measure of music, even by Beethoven, he would change it. And why did Haydn have a measure of rest? He would just ignore it, much to the displeasure of his piano teacher.  “She was right,” he concedes now. The Composer Talk is a staple of the festival, its keynote address. But every featured guest composer presents it in a different way. Sometimes they delve deep into the intricacies of their scores; sometimes they wax philosophical; and sometimes, as was the case with Frederic Rzewski 10 years ago, they perform. Fujikura’s talk was actually an interview with Kurt Doles, the executive director of the MidAmerican Center. The composer told Doles, and the audience, that he didn’t like watching the horror films, but loved listening to the music. His favorite score is “Alien 3” by Elliot Goldenthal. He liked the way the music mixed in at one point with the sound effects of a human being…


Kantorski-Pope Duo to help church dedicate new grand piano

On Sunday, Nov. 6 at 3 p.m., the community is invited to a rare concert event in which the congregation of St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church will dedicate their new Steinway grand piano. Featuring the renowned Kantorski-Pope Piano Duo, the concert will be held in the sanctuary of St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church, 871 East Boundary Street, Perrysburg.   Formed in 1988 by pianists Valrie Kantorski and Ann Almond Pope, the Duo is a Steinway Artist Ensemble and has been three-time winner of First Prize in the Graves Duo-Piano Competition. The two-piano ensemble was awarded the Virginia E. Schrader Residency in the performing arts from the Toledo Museum of Art in conjunction with the national touring exhibition entitled Impressionism.  In addition, the duo was selected for membership in the Touring Artists Program of the Ohio Arts Council.   Prior to 1998, Pope was an adjunct instructor of piano and piano pedagogy in the College of Musical Arts at Bowling Green State University (Ohio) and instructor of piano in the Creative Arts Program.  Kantorski is the principal keyboardist of the Toledo Symphony, performing as orchestral, chamber, and solo pianist. The recital will feature familiar music from a variety of sources, including classical, ballet and film scores.  Included are works by Bernstein, Brahms, Debussy and a work based upon the themes from The Wizard of Oz. This is the second of the 2016-17 St. Tim’s Discovers season.. Tim’s Discovers is dedicated to bringing classical music to communities throughout Northwest Ohio. Doors open at 2:30 p.m.  St. Timothy’s is fully accessible with plenty of convenient parking. Information on all upcoming events in the series is available at www.saint-timothy.net.


Pat Martino swings through musical matrix as guest artist at BGSU festival

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Jazz guitarist Pat Martino has his own perspective on music. Within a couple minutes of his telephone interview with BG Independent, he’s talking about the ancient Chinese text the I Ching, the Book of Changes. Martino’s mind has a mathematical turn. He sees the guitar, he said, “as a matrix.” “I teach it accordingly and hope through that I can open up other windows,” he said. “The guitar strings are six in number, and it’s horizontal and vertical in terms of its properties.” There’s the strings across and the fret bar down. “You literally have a matrix,” he said. The I Ching, he explained, is made up of hexagrams of six broken or unbroken lines, each with 64 variations. “The I Ching is a psychologically study, a spiritual study,” he said. “The guitar is a musical study, but it’s the same matrix.” And the performer is “a witness” in the middle of this complex of dualities – minor-major, loud-soft, fast-slow — looking back to the beginning and forward the end. Martino will share his views on music and all the areas of life it opens up as the featured artist at this year’s Orchard Jazz Festival at Bowling Green State University. He’ll perform Saturday, Oct. 15, at 8 p.m. in the Donnell Theatre on campus and give a master class earlier that day at 2:30 p.m. in the Conrad Room in the Wolfe Center for the Arts. The fusion group Marbin will perform and teach on Friday. See the full festival schedule at: http://www.bgsu.edu/musical-arts/events/orchard-guitar-festival.html. The son of a singer and guitarist, Martino entered that musical matrix as a youngster growing up in in the fertile Philadelphia music scene. There he rubbed shoulders with jazz legend John Coltrane and worked with pop stars Bobby Darin and Frankie Avalon.  He first went on the road with former schoolmate organist Charles Earland, planting the guitarist firmly in soul jazz. He moved to Harlem to immerse himself more in that scene. His reputation was such that he signed with Prestige as a 20-year-old where he was a pioneer in jazz-rock fusion. But by 1976, Martino, then in his early 30s, was experiencing seizures that eventually required surgery in 1980. The surgery severely impaired his memory. He taught himself to play guitar again, emerging back on the scene in 1987, only to take another hiatus to care for his…


David Bixler’s Hughes Project started as a gift from his mother

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News David Bixler can thank his mother for inspiring his Hughes Project. His mother, a retired English teacher, sent him a copy of Langston Hughes’ poem “Mother to Son.” “Well, son, I’ll tell you,” the poem begins. “Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.” That poem inspired Bixler. He responded as a jazz saxophonist and composer would: by writing a song. From that first piece has grown into The Hughes Project, seven pieces with more to come for a nine-piece ensemble. All based on poems written by the man of letters considered a leading figures of the Harlem Renaissance in the 1920s and 1930s. Last week Bixler gave a lecture about the project, accompanying his remarks with performances of two pieces from the project. Later that night he presented a recital featuring the seven movements he’s completed so far. He’d long been interested in writing music inspired by Hughes that blended a jazz quintet and a string quartet. He finally carved out the time to write the piece last year. He was on leave from his position as director of jazz studies at Bowling Green State University, and his family had relocated back to New York City. They were living, he quipped, in “the squalor” of renovating their new home. He started writing in June, 2015 and first heard what he’d written this May. Bixler, who received a grant from the Institute for the Study of Culture and Society at BGSU, brought in musicians from New York City for the performance. They included trumpeter Russell Johnson, who grew up in the same Wisconsin town as Bixler and has his mother as a teacher. The jazz contingent also featured Jon Cowherd, piano, Gregg August, bass, and Fabio Rojas, drums. The quintet was joined by the Semiosis Quartet – Natalie Calma and Nicole Parks, violin, Oliver Chang, viola, and Kett Lee, cello. In composing the pieces, Bixler made some key decisions up front. As with the initial “Mother and Son,” he did not set the poem to music to be sung nor did he have a narrator reading against a musical backdrop. Also, though Hughes was often called a “jazz poet,” and he wrote many works inspired by the music of African-Americans, Bixler avoided those. Instead, he said, he focused “on his work that dealt with our common humanity and the emotions therein and trying to…


Grammy nominee Hunter Hayes to perform at Stroh, Oct. 15

Hailed as a “country-rock-blues guitar hero in the making” by the Los Angeles Times, five-time Grammy nominee Hunter Hayes is a singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who roared onto the music scene with his Platinum-selling, No. 1 self-titled debut album and chart-topping sophomore album “Storyline,” on Atlantic/Warner Music Nashville. He will perform at the Bowling Green State University Stroh Center Saturday, Oct. 15. Doors at 7 p.m. With three No. 1 singles already under his belt (including the multi-Platinum smash “Wanted,” “Somebody’s Heartbreak,” and “I Want Crazy”), Hayes delved into unprecedented territory with the innovative rollout of new music via streaming and digital platforms in 2015, culminating in the release of a special, three-disc collection (seven acoustic, seven studio and seven live songs) dubbed The 21 Project. Ticket prices are: $43 for Floor Seats (General Admission); $35 for Lower Bowl; and $29 for Upper Bowl Purchase tickets online, by calling 1-800-745-3000, or by visiting the Stroh Center Ticket Office.