Music

Howard’s set to get its Chicago blues mojo on

By DAVID DUPONT  BG Independent News When Joseph Morganfield was a 12-year-old, he’d go hear his father play the blues in local Chicago clubs. His father always closed the show with the tune, “Got My Mojo Workin’” and knew that was Joseph’s favorite song. So he’d call the youngster on stage, and being a kid the son would inevitably snatch away the microphone and scurry away. “He had a look that would bring me back,” Morganfield recalled in a recent telephone interview. His father was McKinley Morganfield, better known to the world as Muddy Waters, the guitarist who plugged in the raw blues from the Mississippi Delta and helped shape Chicago blues, and later ignite the rock revolution. Joseph Morganfield has taken “Mojo” as his stage name, and is now carrying on his father’s tradition. “Mojo” Morganfield with special guest Maurice Vaughn will perform at Howard’s Club H, Friday, March 29. Doors open at 8 p.m. Cover is $5.  The show is presented by the club and Third Street Cigar Records. Morganfield, Muddy Water’s youngest child, said his father wanted him to go into music. He taught him guitar, though Morganfield said he doesn’t have much aptitude for the instrument, and singing, which he did take to. But aside from those impromptu appearances at the end of his father’s sets, he didn’t pursue music when he was young. Instead he played basketball, and even earned a college scholarship. “He was not happy with that,” Morganfield said. “He was preparing me for it (music).” His father died when Morganfield was a senior in high school. Morganfield, 53, went on to have a family of his own — seven kids. He worked trimming trees to keep them away from power lines. His only stage was the shower, he said. Then three years ago with his kids grown, he decided to return to music.  “That desire was always with me,” he said.  “I didn’t want any regrets. At least I could say I tried doing it.” So he took some vocal lessons and got together a band and started working. He does allow that every now and then he can hear some similarities to his father’s voice. “He had a voice like a southern preacher,” Morganfield said. Even if the listener couldn’t quite make out the words, “you knew what he meant.” One of the elements of the music scene now, compared to his father’s heyday, was that his father always fielded his own band. Now, Morganfield said, he sometimes gets booked for gigs as a single and will perform with a group of local musicians. Even though they may rehearse some before the show, the sound is never like it is with an established group. He’ll bring his own band to Howard’s including guitarist Rick Kreher, who worked with Muddy Waters. Kreher, in fact, was on stage one legendary night at the Checkerboard Lounge when the Rolling Stones stopped by to jam. He’ll also be joined by Maurice Vaughn on keyboards. Vaughn is a band leader in his own right — he played a show at the Cla-Zel back in spring, 2001. When he’s not working with his band he’ll join Morganfield. He performs on the vocalist’s new EP, which includes two originals and two covers of Waters tunes. Sometimes he’ll book all-star bands, all in the interest of keeping working and keeping the blues alive. “People like us don’t want to let the music die. We want to keep our music in front of everybody as long as we can.” He’s also gigged with Morganfield’s brother Big Bill Morganfield. Another brother …


Pianist Sarah Cahill spotlights women composers at BGSU recital

By DAVID DUPONT  BG Independent News Pianist Sarah Cahill admits to having mixed feelings about her project “The Future is Female.” The series of recitals is devoted to the work of female composers from the 17th century into the present. “It doesn’t seem right to lump everyone  together by gender because the majority of women composers just want to be thought of as composers,” she said in a recent telephone interview. “I’ve always been ambivalent  about all women concerts. Now I’m doing it myself mainly because there’s so much music that deserves to be heard.” Cahill will present a concert in her “The Future is Female” series Monday, March 25 at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall on the Bowling Green State University campus.  The recital is part of the Music at the Forefront series. Her repertoire for “The Future is Female” includes works by 56 composers dating by to Elisabeth Jacquet de la Guerre’s Keyboard Suite in D minor from 1707 to Theresa Wong’s “She Dances Naked Under Palm Trees,” inspired by the song “Images” by Nina Simone, which she is performing for the first time. Of those pieces in that repertoire, Cahill commissioned 10 of them. The Wong piece is the latest in a line of compositions written with her in mind dating back to 1977 when John Adams composed “China Gates” for Cahill who was 17. “I remember when that was a new piece no one would play it because it was such a strange piece, so minimalist,” she said. Cahill would perform the composition in competitions and “it was really frowned upon.” Now it has been well accepted by pianists and is frequently played. Commissioning new works is central to her vision as an artist. Cahill said back when she was 17 she had an identity crisis. Not unusual, she said, for a teenager. While her fellow conservatory students were locked away in the practice rooms totally consumed with being the best pianists they could be, she wanted to write and read poetry. That led to writing music criticism for alternative newspapers. “I started playing contemporary music because I liked having more of the focus on the music itself rather than me as the pianist,” Cahill said. Instead of having the spotlight on her, she wants to present “this amazing new piece that I am premiering.” She said : “I love getting a PDF of a new score and just being really thrilled and having the privilege of playing it for the first time, and then … in many cases, have it enter the repertoire.” She started playing piano at 5. At 8 he began studying with Sharon Mann who introduced her to the music of J.S. Bach. She played his suites and fugues and listened to his great choral works. The lessons were exciting, Cahill recalled. Mann was “beautiful and funny and treated me like an adult.” A gifted musician, Cahill performed a concerto with an orchestra every year from the time she was 12. And as with all her peers, the music she played was by men. Even “the minor, minor composers” were men. She’d heard of Clara Schumann, but only as the long-suffering wife of Robert Schumann, not as a composer in her own right.  “The Future is Female” is meant to counter that. The scope extends back through the centuries and around the globe. So she performs music by the 19th century Venezuelan composer Teresa Carreño. She said she loves doing research to find unknown composers “who really deserve to be heard.” The Friday before her recital at BGSU, she will perform…


Art song competition has performers singing in tongues

By DAVID DUPONT  BG Independent News Nine singers, each with a trusty pianist by their side, sang their hearts out in a smorgasbord of languages Saturday night. The nine duos were performing in the finals of the Conrad Art Song Competition in Bryan Recital Hall, of the Moore Musical Arts Center. True to the rules of the event, each singer had to tackle songs in at least four languages — French, German, Italian, and English. For some even that wasn’t enough. The graduate division winners, soprano Mickey Miller and pianist Humay Gasimzade, added a song in Swedish. The undergraduate division winning duo of baritone Nick Kottman and Emily Morin performed a Russian song in the semifinals earlier on Saturday. And Nigerian mezzo soprano Eunice Ayodele brought a taste of her home to the competition by performing a song in Yoruba. She and pianist Jiamo Zhang placed third in the graduate division. The two winning duos, though, opened their sets in the finals in English, colloquial English at that. Miller and Gasimzade came out with Cheryl Francis-Hoad’s “Rubbish at Adultery.” In some decidedly PG-13 language, the song’s narrator explains to her overly sensitive lover that he is failing at cheating.  Miller played up the roll. Each of her darts hitting its mark. “It’s such a joy to perform,” she said of the song.  Kottman and Morin opened with “Nude at the Piano,” in which the singer laments having been abandoned by his lover, and left with the piano he cannot play. In the finals, the competitors choose their first piece, and then the judges selected one or two more for them to sing. “I was afraid they weren’t going to choose it,” the baritone said explaining why he and Morin opened with the comic number.  “I really enjoy  the different dynamics in it. I go from being angry to sad.” He moves around, plopping himself on the edge of the piano bench, interacting with Morin. “I get to do a little more than park and bark,” he said. Morin enjoys the piece as well. The music is knotty and difficult, a  peek into the character’s tortured psyche. “I really like the harmonic language, and the way it fits with the text and all the little gestures that … intertwine with the vocal phrases,” Morin said. At one point the music “kind of wanders up the keyboard and wonders what happened and comes back.” Kottman, a music education major, studies with Lance Ashmore. Morin, a second year master’s student in collaborative piano, studies with Solungaa Liu. Both performed last, each placing third with a different partner. (The division is determined by the standing of the vocalist.) Miller, a student of Jane Schoonmaker Rodgers, and  Gasimzade, a student of Robert Satterlee, are both in their first year of studies in the Doctorate in Contemporary Music program. Both came to BGSU because of the rarity and high reputation of the doctoral program. While they concentrate on new music, the song competition requires the musicians to perform music from a variety of periods.  Miller said that break from their usual new music repertoire was appreciated. “It’s such a joy for us to do the dead guys,” she said. Other winners Saturday night were:  ° In the undergraduate division, soprano Jhane Perdue and Ivan Yumagulov, second place, and baritone Aaron Meece, and Rhys Burgess, third place ° In the graduate division, soprano Alicia Berryhill and Sijia Lin, second place, and Ayodele and Zhang, third. John Simmons, of Cleveland Institute, who judged both rounds of the competition with concert soloist Alta Boover and Denise Bernardini, of the…


BGSU Jazz Week headliner Dayna Stephens has a musical vision all his own

By DAVID DUPONT  BG Independent News Saxophonist and composer Dayna Stephens wants students to know that  all the technical information and trickery they are learning are just tools. Those tools need to be applied “to more accurately, more clearly, telling whatever story they have inside  of them.” The New York-based musician will visit Bowling Green State University next week as the headliner for Jazz Week. He’ll play with the jazz faculty on Thursday at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall and on Friday at with the Jazz Lab Band  I in Kobacker Hall. Thursday’s show is free. Friday’s concert is a ticketed event. Asked during a telephone interview what he tries to convey to students, he said he tells them “not to focus too much on the technique.” They need to tell  “an engaging story” in “a unique voice.” Stephenson said he forged his own voice — a burnished, well ripened sound — by listening to saxophonists as diverse as swing legend Lester Young and jazz fusion master Michael Brecker.  “I love them both,” he said. “Having those two big influences is bound to produce something a little different.” Stephens, 40, has been recognized by Downbeat magazine as one of the music’s Rising Stars. David Bixler, the director of jazz studies at BGSU, said that he invited Stephens to campus on the recommendation of a student, though has also heard with Stephens perform shows with pianists Kenny Barron and Fred Hersch.  Stephens’ ears are tuned to the other musicians he’s working with regardless of what instruments they play or whether they are masters such as pianist Barron or players younger than himself. “I’m still trying to understand what drummers do,” he said. “The attempt will also lead to unique ways of expressing myself.” Known as a saxophonist, he has also performed professionally as a bassist.  That’s been essential to his approach. “Having people relying on your beat makes your sense of rhythm stronger.” That firm sense of time is important whether he’s in the rhythm section or the frontline. Also playing bass  taught him the value of using simpler melodic ideas. “You can’t play everything you play on a saxophone.” Listening has been at the core of his musical growth. “My dad pointed out he could tell who different saxophonists were just by listening to them,” he said. “That hint alone made me listen a little closer to what made Grover Washington sound like he did and Sonny Rollins sound like he did.” Growing up in the San Francisco Bay area, Stephens studied piano for a few years when he was a child. Though he always had an interest in music, “I didn’t really take to it.” Then in seventh grade he had an open period in his schedule, so he started playing saxophone in the band. “Saxophone I took to immediately.” His grandfather had played saxophone in jazz and rhythm and blues bands when he was younger. That only added to the instrument’s appeal. When Stephens started playing, his grandfather also got his horn out. Stephens played in the school bands, and he audited classes Laney College in Oakland taught by Bay area jazz legend Ed Kelly. “I got to  hang out with cats who did it for a living,” Stephens remembers. “They would tell stories and we’d learn tunes.” He relished that sense of community. He played some gigs around town, and Kelly hired him for his band at times. Then Stephens headed east to study at Berklee College of Music in Boston. Just as he was touching down in Boston though, his mother called. He had to…


BGSU arts events through March 27

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS March 7 – The Prout Reading Series presents creative writing MFA students Lucas Fulton, poetry, and Christina Stump, fiction, teaching associates in the English department. Their reading will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Prout Chapel. FreeMarch 7 – The BGSU Concert Band, under the direction of Dr. Bruce Moss, will perform a concert at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Tickets in advance are $3 for students and children and $7 for adults; all tickets are $10 on the day of performance. Tickets are available at bgsu.edu/arts or by calling 419-372-8171. March 7 – The BGSU Department of Theatre and Film continues performances of “The Wolves,” the debut play by Sarah DeLappe about a girl’s indoor soccer team that navigates big questions and wages tiny battles with all the vim and vigor of a pack of adolescent warriors. The play, which earned DeLappe the 2015 Relentless Award for Playwriting and was a finalist for the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, runs at 8 p.m. on March 7-9, and at 2 p.m. on March 9 in the Eva Marie Saint Theatre at the Wolfe Center for the Arts. Advance tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for students and children; all tickets on the day of the performance are $20. Tickets are available at bgsu.edu/artsor by calling the Wolfe Center box office at 419-372-8171. March 9 – The College of Musical Arts hosts the annual Dr. Marjorie Conrad Art Song Competition for BGSU voice and piano students. The semifinal round will start at noon and the final round at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free March 10 – Members of the BG Philharmonia in the College of Musical Arts will present a chamber orchestra concert at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall at Moore Musical Arts Center. Tickets in advance are $3 for students and children and $7 for adults; all tickets are $10 on the day of the performance. Tickets are available at bgsu.edu/arts or by calling 419-372-8171. March 11 – The BGSU University Band will present a spring concert. Directed by Dr. Bruce Moss, the band will perform at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall, Moore Musical Arts Center. Tickets in advance are $3 for students and children and $7 for adults; all tickets are $10 on the day of the performance. Tickets are available at bgsu.edu/arts or by calling 419-372-8171. March 11 – The College of Musical Arts welcomes Bulgarika, a group of four master musicians with decades of performing experience. They will share the very best of the Bulgarian folk-music tradition. The performance will begin at 7 p.m. in 202B Bowen-Thompson Student Union. Free March 12-15 – Tenor saxophonist Dayna Stephens is the featured artist when the BGSU College of Musical Arts celebrates jazz March 12-15. Stephens has garnered critical acclaim for his playing, compositions and arrangements. DownBeat Critics Poll ranked him second in the 2017 “Rising Star” category, and his Gratitude album was described as “a highly cinematic listening experience, full of rolling seas and shifting skies.”  Kicking off jazz week will be the BGSU Jazz Faculty performing at 7 p.m. on March 12 at the Wildwood Metropark Manor House, 5100 Central Ave., Toledo. Faculty members include David Bixler, saxophone; Ariel Kasler, guitar and piano, and Jeff Halsey, bass. The recital is free and open to the public. The vocal jazz ensemble will perform at 8 p.m. on March 12 in Bryan Recital Hall at Moore Musical Arts Center. On March 13, the student chamber jazz ensembles will perform a free concert in Bryan Recital Hall….


BGSU marches into spring with full slate of arts events

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Dr. Marjorie Conrad Art Song Competition:The 20th annual competition highlights talented vocalists and collaborative pianistsMarch 9 | Bryan Recital Hall, Moore Musical Arts Center Kevin Bylsma, coordinator of the Conrad Art Song Competition, gets ready to announce the winners in 2017. The annual Dr. Marjorie Conrad Art Song competition features talented undergraduate and graduate singers and pianists working together to present a selection of art songs in various languages, ranging from the classical period, all the way to songs by living composers. The first round of competition takes place March 9 from 1-5 p.m., with the finalists announced around 6 p.m. The final round of competition, presented as a formal concert, begins at 8 p.m., with winners announced at the conclusion of the performance. Both the preliminary and final rounds are free and open to the public in Bryan Recital Hall. For more information, visit our website. Saxophonist Dayna Stephens headlines jazz week:Enjoy jazz performances each eveningMarch 12-15 | Bryan Recital Hall and Kobacker Hall, Moore Musical Arts Center The jazz department welcomes tenor saxophonist Dayna Stephens for our annual jazz week, March 12-15. Recent recipient of the number-two spot for the 2017 DownBeat Critics Poll in the category “Rising Star—Tenor Saxophone” Stephens has garnered critical acclaim over the years for his playing, compositions and arrangements. He will be featured in a concert with BGSU jazz faculty at 8 p.m. March 14 in Bryan Recital Hall, and as a soloist with Jazz Lab Band I on March 15 at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall. Other events throughout the week include the vocal jazz ensemble March 12 at 8 p.m., and student chamber ensembles March 13 at 8 p.m., both in Bryan Recital Hall. All events in Bryan Recital Hall are free. Tickets for the March 15 Jazz Lab Band I performance are available at bgsu.edu/arts or by calling the box office at 419-372-8171. Admission is free for all BGSU students with ID card at the door. Wendy and Lucy: Film celebrates Women’s History MonthMarch 26, 7:30 p.m. | 206 Bowen-Thompson Student UnionThis award-winning film is an intimate character study of a young woman, Wendy, and her dog Lucy. On her way to find work in Alaska, Wendy’s car breaks down in a small town and she finds herself stranded and unable to pay for repairs or even food. Directed by Kelly Reichardt and starring Michelle Williams, this American drama is a simple yet beautifully told narrative of uncertainty and hope in the face of hardship. The film is free and open to the public. BFA seniors present thesis exhibition:Art, creative writing collaboration highlights April 12 eventExhibition: March 30-April 14, Collaboration: April 12 | Fine Arts Center  Senior BFA art students share their consummate work, ranging from metals, sculpture, ceramics and painting to glass, digital art and graphic design. March 30, the two-week show opens with a panel of artists in various fields who will present “Where Next? The Future of Art” at 4 p.m. in the Thomas B. and Kathleen M. Donnell Theatre (Wolfe Center for the Arts), a video animation screening at 5 p.m. in 204 Fine Arts Center, an opening reception from 5-7 p.m. in the Galleries, and the awards presentation at 5:45 p.m. This year, a special collaboration between School of Art and the creative writing program will be featured from 6-8 p.m., Friday, April 12 in the Bryan Gallery. Creative writing students will read two of their pieces, including an ekphrastic piece that vividly describes a visual work of art by one of the senior BFA art seniors. Admission is free to the exhibition and the…


Scheduling change doesn’t throw off timing of chamber competition finalists

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The new shorter semester threw off the timing of the Wayland Chamber Competition at Bowling Green State University.   The timing of the performers though was unaffected. The competition founded in 2007 was moved into the earlier part of March, two to three weeks earlier than usual, to accommodate the new 15-week semester. And the semester also had a later start because of Winter Session. That, said Brittany Lasch, one of the faculty members coordinating the event, put a strain on  students. It would be extremely difficult to form and prepare an ensemble in those few weeks. Also the event conflicted with some off-campus activities that some students were involved in.  Still the finals of the competition held Sunday (March 3) featured the usual mix of intriguing music crisply performed. Borderlines Trio: Taylor Francis, Steve Naylor, and Gretchen Hill The winner in the undergraduate division was the Borderlines Trio — Taylor Francis, flute, Gretchen Hill, clarinet, and Steve Naylor, piano. They performed  the aptly titled  “Relentless” movement from Pierre Jalbert’s  “Triple Set.” The piece featured darting, interlocking lines with the shards of musical ideas ricochetting from one instrument to another. Then the trio performed “Portraits of Langston” by Valerie Coleman (who has performed on campus as part of Imani Winds). Dedicated to writer Langston Hughes, the two movements were imbued with the spontaneity of jazz. The first place award for the graduate division went to Landlocked Percussion, a repeat winner. With shifting personnel the ensemble won first place in 2018 and second place in 2017.  Nick Fox is the only constant member over the three years. Other members this year were: Henrique Batista (returning from 2017) and Jerry Emmons ( returning from 2018) with pianist Ariel Magno de Costa. Their two pieces Michael Oesterle’s  “Carrousel” and Michael Laurello’s “Spine” called for delicacy, including passages played with knitting needles, as well as intricate high volume cadences precisely executed. Third Nature: Frances Zengel, Trey Washington, and David Hirschfeld Another percussion ensemble, Third Nature — Frances Zengel, Trey Washington, and David Hirschfeld — won second place in the undergraduate division.   Tuphonium Winning second place in the graduate division was  Tuphonium — Graeme Materne and Elena Markley, euphonium, and Josh Maberry and Tyler Schreiber, tuba. The third undergraduate finalist was the Fifth Circle Reed Quintet — Ava Wirth, oboe, Kendra Sachs, clarinet, Andrew Hosler, saxophone, Jennifer Buck, bass clarinet, and Nicole Grimone, bassoon. The semifinals were held Saturday. The first place ensembles received $200 for each member with the second place ensembles winning $100. The winning ensembles will perform several times in April. Performances will be: a radio broadcast at WGTE, Friday, April 6 at 10 a.m.; at the Toledo Museum of Art, Sunday, April 14, at 3 p.m.; and at the Manor House in Wildwood Preserve Metropark, Toledo, Tuesday, April 9, at 7 p.m. Lasch said that the College of Musical Arts is considering holding the competition later in the semester next year, and having the semifinals and finals all on one day as is done for the Conrad Art Song Competition, which will be held next Saturday, March 9. The Fifth Circle Reed Quintet


Collect/Project brings a world of sound to BGSU concert series

By DAVID DUPONT  BG Independent News If there’s one piece of music that captures the totality of the sound of Collect/Project it hasn’t been composed yet. The transatlantic quartet that is devoted to stretching the boundaries of sound is just getting started. The ensemble’s flutist Shanna Gutierrez dates its genesis to a performance in Chicago with herself, singer Frauke Aulbert, and Francisco Castillo-Trigueros on electronics. Later Eva Zöllner brought her accordion into the mix. They worked in various permutations, but it was only last fall, Gutierrez said, that the quartet was able assemble all four members on the same side of the Atlantic. That was in Germany, the home of Aulbert and Zöllner. Now Collect/Project is making its maiden tour of the United States as a quartet. The brief swing through the Midwest includes a concert Monday, March 4, at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall on the Bowling Green State University campus. The free show is part of the Music at the Forefront concert series sponsored by the MidAmerican Center for Contemporary Music. The logistics of sustaining a group that has two members in Germany, one in New York, and the fourth, Gutierrez in Chicago, are  daunting. Add in the other musical projects they are involved as individuals. Still “the rewards are worth it,” the flutist said. “We really enjoy working together. It’s really a fantastic experience.” The three instruments on stage — the flute, accordion, and voice — all “breathe in their own way,” she said. From this comes a unity of sound. Castillo-Trigueros’ electronics add another dimension. The title of the concert, “Road-Trip,” is the program notes state: “designed to focus on the experience of musical performance through a diversity of pieces that look at relationships between performer, creator, composer and audience— a virtual road trip across continents and musical styles and experiences.”  Christopher Trapani’s “Hafenlieder” celebrates the sound of the harbor. It opens with a raucous chorus that evokes a port-side bars frequented by sailors. It could be in the composer’s home New Orleans, or Hamburg, Germany. The piece, Gutierrez said, is the first art song written in Plattdeutsch, a northern German dialect. Lisa R. Coons’ “Essay 1: Mater (2019) for voice, flute, accordion and electronics” is a commentary on the various forms of gender and social inequality, a fitting topic given the ensemble has three women and a Mexican immigrant, Gutierrez said. Castillo-Trigueros’ electronics off-stage control the performers, lighting cues direct the performers as to how they should act. “We have to be  attentive,” Gutierrez said. “It’s a fun way to work. Sometimes it puts you a little bit out of your comfort zone, and that’s also good.” The quartet’s sonic journey also moves into ethereal spaces on Castillo-Trigueros’ “En la orilla gris, silencio,” a piece originally for flute, voice, and electronics, but re-envisioned to incorporate Zöllner’s accordion. The sounds are spare and haunting, blurring the boundaries between the voice, electronics, accordion, and flute. The quiet reverberates throughout the piece. Gutierrez said Collect/Project is intent on continuing its journey. The next major project is a composition from George Lewis, a master composer who straddles the worlds of contemporary classical music and avant garde jazz. Arrangements for the premiere in New York are still being settled. “There are more pieces in the works, and more tours planned,” Gutierrez said. “We shall see where it goes.”


BGSU Arts Events through March 13

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS At the galleries – The Annual Undergraduate Art and Design Exhibition, a juried selection of art in all media by students in the BGSU School of Art, will be displayed in the Dorothy Uber Bryan and Willard Wankelman galleries in the Fine Arts Center. The exhibition runs through March 3. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Free Feb. 25 – Current Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA) students will perform a showcase recital during the College of Musical Arts’ DMA auditions. The performance will begin at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free Feb. 26 – The spring series of Tuesdays at the Gish presents “Marshall,” the 2017 film directed by Reginald Hudlin. Starring Chadwick Boseman, the film is about Thurgood Marshall, the leading NAACP lawyer from 1938-1961 whose victories include the landmark Brown vs. Board of Education Topeka decision and who became the first African American Supreme Court Justice in 1967. The screening will begin at 7:30 p.m. in 206 Bowen-Thompson Student Union. Free Feb. 27 – Piano faculty member Yevgeny Yontov will perform a recital in the College of Musical Arts’ weekly Faculty Artist Series. Yontov, one of the most promising Israeli pianists of his generation, was a finalist in the 2017 Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Master Competition and received the prize for Best Performance of Chamber Music and for Best Israeli Pianist. He has performed chamber music in Israel, Europe, Asia and North and South America in venues that include Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center. He joined the BGSU faculty in 2018 as an instructor of piano. The recital will begin at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free Feb. 28 – The weekly Prout Reading Series features readings by MFA students Shay Hawkins, poetry, and Matthew Stewart, fiction. The reading will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Prout Chapel. Free Feb. 28 – The BGSU Department of Theatre and Film presents “The Wolves,” the debut play by Sarah DeLappe about a girls’ indoor soccer team that navigates big questions and wages tiny battles with all the vim and vigor of a pack of adolescent warriors. The play, which earned DeLappe the 2015 Relentless Award for Playwriting and was a finalist for the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, runs for two weekends: at 8 p.m. on Feb. 28, March 1-2 and 7-9, and at 2 p.m. on March 2, 3 and 9 in the Eva Marie Saint Theatre at the Wolfe Center for the Arts. Advance tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for students and children; all tickets on the day of the performance are $20. Tickets are available at bgsu.edu/arts or by calling the Wolfe Center box office at 419-372-8171. Feb. 28 – The BGSU Wind Symphony, under the direction of Dr. Ken Thompson, will perform a concert at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Advance tickets are $3 for students and children and $7 for adults. All tickets are $10 on the day of performance. Tickets are available at bgsu.edu/arts or by calling the box office at 419-372-8171. March 1 – The College of Musical Arts Guest Artist Series welcomes Natasha Farny on cello. Farny is an associate professor of strings, guitar and harp at the State University of New York at Fredonia. She performs with several chamber music groups and as a soloist and presents master classes. She was awarded the Avaloch Farm Music Institute Residency in 2017 and several awards between 2007 and 2015….


Musical dreams come true at BGSU Concerto Concert

By DAVID DUPONT  BG Independent News For Mei-Yi Wang performing the first movement of Sergei Prokofiev’s Third Piano Concerto with at the Concerto Concert at Bowling Green State University is a dream come true. Wang  is one of the winners in the College of Musical Arts’ annual Competitions in Musical Performance.  Last December 69 students vied for the chance to perform a concerto with the BG Philharmonia.  Wang first heard the Prokofiev concerto when she was in junior high school in Taiwan. “It was so amazing. The piano, the orchestra, the sound was very fantastic. So I’m dreaming I should play this piece someday.” That time will come as Wang and three other competition winners will perform with the Bowling Green Philharmonia, Saturday, Feb. 16, at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall. Tickets are available at bgsu.edu/arts or by calling the box office at 419-372-8171. Other soloists are: Flutist Alec Porter, a junior, performing three movements from John Corigliano’s “Pied Piper Fantasy.”Saxophonist Johnathan Kierspe, a second year graduate student in music performance, performing Marius Constant’s Concertante for Saxophone.Erin Redick, a third year student from Fletcher, who will perform Emmanuel Séjourné’s Concerto for Marimba and Strings Also, receiving top prizes at the competition were: composer Emilio Jose Gonzalez who will have his piece performed at next fall’s New Music Festival, and Ariel Magno de Costa, who received the Virginia Marks Collaborative Piano Award. Erin Redick will perform Emmanuel Séjourné’s Concerto for Marimba and Strings at the Concerto Concert. Redick describes herself as shy and a percussionist who doesn’t like to play loudly even though she started in music because she wanted to be in a rock band. Third year student from Fletcher said she decided to compete this year because “it would force me out of my comfort zone. … I’m a more reserved player. This has broken me out of my shell.” Emmanuel Séjourné’s concerto, Redick said, is accessible. “It’s just tonal enough that it’s easy to listen to, but it’s challenging at the same time.” Her teacher Daniel Piccolo had her listen to three possible concertos to prepare for the competition. It was only after she’d made her choice that she found out that the Séjourné piece was the one Piccolo expected her to select. The percussion studio has not been as active in the concerto competition in the last few years so she found it “a bit shocking” to win, and as a music education, not a performance, major. She started playing percussion in junior high after dabbling a bit on piano and guitar. She wanted to play bass in a rock band, but the junior high music program didn’t offer bass.  She went with drums in hopes of learning bass later. She fell in love with percussion especially after she started taking formal lessons as a high school junior and discovered the percussive possibilities.  Redick said she decided to pursue music in college after working with junior high music students while she was in high school.  Unlike the other winners, she didn’t come to BGSU to study with a particular teacher. She came in a time of transition. When she first visited she met long-time percussion professor Roger Schupp. She immediately like BGSU because “everyone was so friendly.” Schupp died in December, 2015, and Piccolo had just taken over the studio when Redick came in. Alec Porter rehearses with BG Philharmonia on Monday. Porter came to study with his teacher Conor Nelson. When Porter was a junior in high school he attended a recital at BGSU by Nelson, the flute professor at BGSU. Porter, a junior from Carey, ended up…


BGSU Arts Events through March 6

Feb. 16 – The Bowling Green Philharmonia will present its 52nd annual Concerto Concert. Winners of the Competitions in Music Performance will perform concertos with the Philharmonia. The concert will begin at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Advance tickets for the event are $7 for adults, $3 for children and students. All tickets are $10 on the day of the performance. Tickets are available at bgsu.edu/arts or by calling the box office at 419-372-8171. Feb. 17 – The Annual Undergraduate Art and Design Exhibition opens its two-week run with a reception from 2-4 p.m. A juried selection of art in all media by students in the BGSU School of Art will be displayed in the Dorothy Uber Bryan and Willard Wankelman galleries in the Fine Arts Center. The exhibition runs through March 3. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Free Feb. 17 – Members of the BGSU College of Musical Arts faculty will perform at the Great Gallery of the Toledo Museum of Art, 2445 Monroe St., Toledo. The chamber music concert will begin at 3 p.m. The performance is free; onsite parking is $7 for nonmembers of the museum. Feb. 18 – The BGSU College of Musical Arts welcomes guest artist Robert Weirich on piano. Weirich, who recently retired from university teaching, has performed at venues including Alice Tully Hall, the Kennedy Center, Chicago’s Orchestra Hall, Tanglewood, Ravinia and Marlboro. He is a past president of the College Music Society and twice received the Educational Press Achievement Award for his writing. His piano recital will begin at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. FreeFeb. 18 – The BGSU School of Art welcomes photographer Tim Archibald for a lecture about his book “Echolilia,” a collection of photographs that share the relationship between him and his son, who is on the autism spectrum. He will speak at 5 p.m. in 204 Fine Arts Center. Free Feb. 19 – Director Jordan Peele’s 2017 debut film “Get Out” is the featured screening at the Department of Theatre and Film’s Tuesdays at the Gish series. The 103-minute film is a jump-scare thriller and a masterpiece of social analysis. The screening will start at 7:30 p.m. in 206 Bowen-Thompson Student Union. Free Feb. 19 – The student Chamber Jazz Ensembles will perform at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free Feb. 20 – Compositions by BGSU faculty members will be performed as part of the Faculty Artist Series. The concert will begin at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free Feb. 20 – BG Reel and the University Film Organization host a 48-Hour Film Festival for spring semester. Students have 48 hours to create a film based on a prompt. The screening of the films will begin at 9 p.m. in 206 Bowen-Thompson Student Union. Free Feb. 21 – The BGSU Department of Theatre and Film’s Elsewhere Productions presents a reading of “Kolossians Kolony” by Kester E. Oshioreame. Directed by Leesi Akubue, the reading will begin at 7 p.m. in the Marjorie Conrad M.D. Choral Room at the Wolfe Center for the Arts. Free Feb. 21 – The BGSU Creative Writing program, in conjunction with the Career Center, presents “The Write Kind of Jobs,” a career-centric event, from 7:30-8:30 p.m. in 228 Bowen-Thompson Student Union. Free Feb. 21 – The College of Musical Arts welcomes Bill Street and Jean-Marie Londeix for a saxophone recital as part of the Guest Artist Series. Londeix is…


Super star violin, Disney, sketch comedy, musical premiere, & more scheduled for Toledo Symphony’s 2019-2020 season

From  TOLEDO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA The Toledo Symphony Orchestra (TSO) has announced its 2019-2020 season. “For our 76th season, we renew our commitment to our public and continue our constant quest for artistic excellence,” says Alain Trudel, Music Director of the Toledo Symphony. “It was an invigorating challenge to come up with programs following a really wonderful anniversary season, and my team and I certainly rose to the occasion. The programs and artists came together really well, and we ended up with a 2019-2020 season we’re extremely proud to share with everyone in the community. There’s literally something for everyone.” The most notable event of the 2019-2020 season is the one-night-only Spotlight Event with superstar violinist Itzhak Perlman on Nov. 12 at the Peristyle. Perlman’s numerous awards include a Kennedy Center Honor, the Medal of Liberty, a National Medal of the Arts, four Emmy Awards, fifteen Grammy Awards, and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. His haunting violin can be heard in Steven Spielberg’s Academy Award-winning film, “Schindler’s List.” Perlman will be making his fifth appearance with the TSO and first in 14 years in November. He will be performing the music of prolific film composer John Williams. “Special thanks go to Huntington Bank for making Itzhak Perlman’s special appearance with the TSO possible,” says Zak Vassar, President and CEO of the Toledo Symphony. “It is through Huntington’s generosity that we are able to share this inspiring man—his story, his charming presence, his profound artistry—with the region, and we are grateful.” Subscribers to any of the symphony’s 2019-2020 concert series can purchase tickets to Itzhak Perlman now through the Toledo Symphony Box Office at 1838 Parkwood Avenue, by calling 419.246.8000, or by visiting toledosymphony.com/listenup. Single tickets for Itzhak Perlman, with prices starting at $49, go on sale to the general public on August 1. “Perlman’s appearance is just one of many special moments we have planned for the 2019-2020 season,” says Vassar. “As the Toledo Ballet and Toledo Symphony have joined forces to create the Toledo Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA), it is important to challenge the boundaries of our art forms and create great experiences for this community. You will see that we have incorporated elements of music and dance into various programs in our Masterworks, Pops, Family, and Holiday Series. This includes the Masterworks program “Carmina Burana,” originally intended as a staged work with dance and choreography. These programs also come together in a new Dance Series. It’s a starting point as we continue to dream about the possibilities available through collaboration.” Among the 2019-2020 Highlights: Disney’s Pixar In Concert, a visually stunning, high-definition, multi-media family show featuring montages of memorable clips from every one of Pixar’s 14 films—including “Cars,” “WALL•E,” “Ratatouille,” “A Bug’s Life,” “Finding Nemo,” “Monster’s, Inc.” and “Brave”—all accompanied live by the Toledo Symphony.Tony and Grammy Award-winner Renée Elise Goldsberry, the original Angelica Schuyler from the hit musical phenomenon “Hamilton,” sings Broadway favorites from “Rent,” “The Lion King,” and “Hamilton,” along with original songs based on the poetry of Maya Angelou.An expanded TSO, a huge chorus of singers from BGSU, and original choreography performed by Toledo Ballet dancers join forces for Carl Orff’s “Carmina Burana,” known for the famous choir piece “O Fortuna!.”Olga Kern, Russian pianist and Van Cliburn International Piano Competition winner, performs Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3, often considered the most demanding concerto in the repertoire.Postmodern Jukebox’s singer Aubrey Logan joins Music Director Alain Trudel and the TSO for a program of jazz, soul, classic rock, and more. Aubrey also plays trombone, so expect a trombone duet or two with Alain Trudel!A presentation of…


Young pianists find keys to success at BGSU’s Dubois Piano Competition

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Natasha Wu’s trip is just beginning. The Taiwanese 18-year-old kicked off a two-month trip to the United States by winning the David D. Dubois Piano Competition Sunday. The rest of the trip, the young pianist said, will be devoted to visiting conservatories and colleges to see where the next step in her musical career will take her. Wu was one of eight finalists who performed for a panel of judges Sunday morning in Kobacker Hall on the Bowling Green State University campus. Guest artist Marina Lomazov speaks with Elizabeth Liu, a competitor in the Dubois Piano Competition after the event. The finals capped a three-day competition and festival being hosted for the ninth year by the College of Musical Arts. Twenty-two semifinalists performed on Saturday. On Friday, a number of the contestants took lessons from BGSU faculty members, and guest artist Marina Lomazov gave a master class for university students. On Sunday morning Lomazov was sitting at the adjudicator’s table with Sun Min Kim, of Denison University, and Mary Siciliano, a Michigan-based teacher and performer, determining the winner from what was a field of winners. Every one of the competitors, whether they made the finals or not, could boast a list of state and regional victories. “Obviously it was a really difficult decision,” Lomazov said. “There was a lot of very beautiful playing. “ Still the judges were “cohesive” in selecting those who should receive the awards. Lomazov said of  Wu: “She played with maturity and depth that really belied her years. There was a tremendous nobility to her playing. She did not show off. She didn’t do anything that the music did not ask her to do. That’s what I really appreciated.” “I was very happy and glad,” Wu said of winning the top prize of $3,000.  Other winners were: Colin Choi, high school senior from Northbrook Illinois, second place, $2,000; Kasey Shao, 15, from the Cincinnati, third place, $1,000; and Stephanie Petinaux, 16, Cranberry Township in the Pittsburgh area, and Bryant Li, 14, Katy, Texas, both honorable mentions. Wu said she has been playing since she was 6. Her mother taught piano, and Wu loved the sound of the instrument. She tries to keep that joy alive in her work. Her competition repertoire included a Beethoven sonata, an etude and scherzo by Chopin, and a sonata by 20th century Hungarian composer Bela Bartok. The Bartok was a particular challenge, she said, since she has not played much music in that style. The composer draws on folk music to create pieces with driving rhythms and astringent melodies. Wu’s favorite composer, though, is the romantic Chopin. Now her travels will include visits to Oberlin College, New England Conservatory in Boston, and the Juilliard School in New York City. Her goals are to continue to enjoy music and share it with others. On Saturday night, Lomazov showed how to do just that in her guest artist recital. She performed Modest Mussorgsky’s “Pictures at an Exhibition,” a piece best known and beloved in its orchestral arrangement by Maurice Ravel. Lomazov reclaimed it for the piano, drawing a symphonic range of colors from the piano and complementing the music with projected images of contemporaneous artwork and literary quotations. She then performed “Blue River Variations,” a piece composed for her by John Fitz Rogers. She told the audience she mentioned to Rogers that she liked to practice. She came to regret that comment when she saw the difficulty of the score, which resulted in some friendly back and forth.  The pianist guided the audience into the piece before…


Apollo’s Fire to bring the spirit of Bach’s coffeehouse to BGSU’s Kobacker Hall

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Back when Bach’s music was new, the composer and other professional and student musicians would hang out at Cafe Zimmermann, a coffee house in Leipzig, Germany, to play the latest sounds. Apollo’s Fire, a Baroque music ensemble based in Cleveland, will take listeners back to that time in the mid-18th century when it presents “A Night at Bach’s Coffeehouse” Wednesday, Feb. 6, at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall on the Bowling Green State University campus. The free performance is part of Apollo Fire’s three-day residency presented by the Dorothy E. And Duwayne H. Hansen Musical Arts Series (https://www.bgsu.edu/musical-arts/events/residencies/hansen-musical-arts-series.html). During the residency the ensemble will hold open rehearsals and master classes for flutists and string players. The BGSU visit will feature an 11-member version of the ensemble, which was founded by Jeannette Sorrell 26 years ago. Kathie Stewart, the ensemble’s flutist, has been a collaborator and friend of Sorrell since before she started Apollo’s Fire. The two musicians met at Cincinnati Conservatory, where both were pursuing graduate work. Sorrell was studying harpsichord and conducting, and Stewart was working on a doctorate in flute performance. In Cincinnati, Stewart discovered her love of Baroque music. In the course of her studies, Stewart had played music from the history of flute from early music through contemporary. Her attention always seemed to return to the Baroque period. While later music tends to be “messy,” she said, “Baroque music is calm and clear. It gets messy enough, but then it all resolves.” By this time, Stewart said she was working hard on her instrumental studies. “But I wasn’t loving it.” The conservatory had a Baroque flute.  She took the instrument into a practice room to try to play music by Bach and Telemann. “It was horrifying,” she said. She found a book to guide her, and with that she applied herself to the period instrument.  “I tried things that were awkward and didn’t make sense on modern flute. They made perfect sense on the Baroque flute. I learned from the instrument what Baroque music was all about. Finally I was able to play the music I really loved on the instrument it was written for,” Stewart said. “It revived my appreciation for the flute in general. The  flute itself re-energized me to play music for the rest of my life.” A large part of that has been with Apollo’s Fire. Stewart said that Sorrell (who will not be with the ensemble at BGSU) was at Oberlin and a number of other early music enthusiasts were also in the area.  With Sorrell as leader and harpsichordist, they formed the core of Apollo’s Fire. “The audience is so supportive,” Stewart said. She said the orchestra’s been “amazed how really positive the audience has been for 26 years.” Cleveland was selected as the home base because of its proximity to Oberlin. At first, Cleveland was where the ensemble played. Then it branched out to Akron, and soon made short jaunts to other nearby cities. That circle expanded with longer tours throughout the country. About 10 years ago, Apollo’s Fire did the first of five European tours. The ensemble also expanded the range of music it played to include Celtic music and the traditional mountain sounds of the southern U.S. that were influenced by it. That music is close to the hearts of Sorrell and Stewart, who both grew up in that region. The ensemble’s most recent recording, “Christmas on Sugarloaf Mountain,” is devoted to that style. While modern listeners may make a clear distinction between pop sounds and classical sounds, in Bach’s time…


BGSU arts events through Feb. 20

Jan. 30 – The Faculty Artist Series welcomes Brittany Lasch on trombone. Lasch is an assistant professor in the College of Musical Arts. As the second-place winner of the 2017-18 American Prize, she has appeared as soloist with numerous ensembles including the U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own,” the Queens Symphony and the Rodney Marsalis Philadelphia Big Brass. She also was a winner of Astral Artist’s 2017 National Auditions and the 2015 national Collegiate Solo Competition hosted by the U.S. Army Band. The recital will begin at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free. Jan. 31 – The Prout Reading Series presents poet Julie Webb and fiction writer Ali Miller during the first reading of the semester. Both women are MFA students in the BGSU Creative Writing program. The reading will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Prout Chapel. Free. Feb. 1 – The Center for Women and Gender Equity presents “Women, Gender and Poetry Open Mic,” featuring 1997 BGSU alumna Kayla William as the keynote speaker. The event, which runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in 207 Bowen-Thompson Student Union, includes collaborative poetry activities, blackout poetry tables and open mic time. Free Feb. 1 – The BGSU Department of Theatre and Film’s Elsewhere Productions presents “I Didn’t Want a Mastodon” by Halley Feiffer and directed by Melissa Snyder. The production will begin at 8 p.m. in the Eva Marie Saint Theatre at the Wolfe Center for the Arts. A second performance will begin at 8 p.m. on Feb. 2. Free  Feb. 2 – The College of Musical Arts will host the eighth annual David D. Dubois Piano Competition, which features accomplished high school pianists competing for prizes. Mariana Lomazov, a Ukrainian-American pianist, is this year’s guest artist for the piano competition. One of the most passionate and charismatic performers on the concert scene today, she is the Ira McKissick Koger Professor of Fine Arts at the University of South Carolina School of Music, where she is founder and artistic director of the Southeastern Piano Festival. She will present a solo piano recital at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. The competition semi-finals take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Feb. 2, and the finals will be held from 8:30 a.m. to noon Feb. 3, both in Kobacker Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. For more information about the competition and a full schedule, visit bgsu.edu/dubois. All events are free except Lomazov’s Saturday night recital. Tickets for the concert are $7 for adults and $3 for children and non-BGSU students in advance, $10 for all tickets on the day of the performance. Students with BGSU ID card, and the festival participants will get in free. Tickets are available at our website.  Feb. 3 – Praecepta, the BGSU student chapter of the Society of Composers Inc., presents “24/24,” which pairs performers and composers randomly to collaborate over a period of 48 hours. During the first 24 hours, the composer writes a piece for his or her paired performer. For the second 24 hours, the performer learns the piece. The resulting concert, with the performances of the newly composed and learned pieces, will begin at 4 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free  Feb. 5-7 – Early music ensemble Apollo’s Fire presents “A Night at Bach’s Coffeehouse” at 8 p.m. Feb. 6 as part of its two-day Hansen Musical Arts Series residency. Inspired by the lively coffeehouse concerts led by J.S. Bach in 18th century Leipzig, Apollo’s Fire revives the baroque ideal that music should…