Notable performances include the 2018 Percussive Arts Society International Convention in Indianapolis, Percussive Arts Society Ohio Chapter Days of Percussion at Capital University, Ohio Northern University, Youngstown State University, and Ohio Music Education Association Conferences in Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati. A central part of our mission involves collaborations with composers in the commissioning, premiering, and critically acclaimed recording of their works. Our 2005 release "Dark Wood" includes six premiere recordings and commissions. Our commission project with New York City-based percussionist/composer John Hollenbeck on his "Ziggurat" for five percussionists and four saxophonists, was premiered at the Whitney Museum of Contemporary Art in New York City, and is available on his 2008 release "Rainbow Jimmies." The Youngstown Percussion Collective's 2012 release "Forms Of Things Unknown" is a concert-length suite by YSU professor of jazz studies, bass, and composition, Dr. Dave Morgan. Our 2012 recording of Ron Coulter's "Cajon Trio" will appear on an upcoming 2019 Coulter CD release.
Mandara Music Publications
The Tshokwe inhabit the savannas in northeast Angola in the province of Shaba. They are famous for their skills as carvers and for their great festival dances. The entire community shares in musical events as singers, dancers, and instrumentalists. The Ndjimba xylophone has 17 bars and is played with two rubber sticks. Under each bar is mounted a hollow gourd to serve as an amplifier. Similar keyboard instruments, found throughout much of Africa, are the ancestors of our contemporary Western xylophones and marimbas that were first brought to Central America especially Mexico and Guatemala. Marimba have undergone considerable design innovations over the last 100 years, leading to what you hear today.
Musique de Table by Belgian composer Thierry De May is for three percussionists, each using a small home-made wooden table as their only instrument. The various sounds are produced by different ways of striking the table with the hands. The tables are amplified by means of contact microphones attached underneath the tables. The piece is precisely notated with a combination of traditional notational symbols and a variety of unique graphic symbols. The music is choreographed via the composer’s precise instructions. Thierry De Mey, Born 1956 in Brussels Belgium, is a highley accomplished film composer, film director and percussionist. Alongside of his wife Michele Anne De Mey, who writes the choreography, Thierry has directed and composed music for dance films including Love Sonnets and Tippeke. Next to his career as a film director/composer, De Mey has also composed for other groups including The Quatuor Quadro, Irvine Arditti, The Hilliard Ensemble and The Ictus Ensemble. http://epidemic.cicv.fr/geogb/art/artzoyd/prj/meygb.html
Hoo-Daiko is inspired by the Japanese kodo drumming tradition from the island of Okinawa – a tradition of athletic, powerful, and dramatic expression. It is scored for contemporary marching bass drums. Robert Damm, an associate professor of music education at Mississippi State University where he also serves as the director of MSU's Percussion Ensemble. Damm has a specialty in African and Latin American percussion instruments. In 2002 he studied music and dance in Cuba and in 2004 he traveled to Ghana to study the music and culture of West Africa. He currently serves as Faculty Advisor to the MSU Chapter of the Music Educators National Conference and as a Board Member for the Mississippi Alliance for Arts Education. http://www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=1703
Marimba Quartet was commissioned by the Manhattan Marimba Quartet and has quickly become a tour de force of the marimba ensemble repertoire. Levitan’s music is characterized by simple melodies which are cleverly developed by the use of highly syncopated rhythms, changes of texture, and dynamic contrasts. The performers are required to dampen ringing notes at specific times as in Javanese gamelan music and to play “ghosted”, or very soft notes, as in the jazz idiom. The first movement is in a seven-beat meter and concludes with a slow chorale section that transitions into the second movement, which is in a four-beat meter. Levitan’s music is inspired by jazz and popular music rhythm and harmony. Notes by Glenn Schaft
Stubernic is a virtuosic work for three performers whom all play on a single marimba, as in the marimba traditions of Mexico and Guatemala. Mark Ford is the Director of Percussion Studies at the University of North Texas.
YSU Percussion Studies Program consists of 30 majors in various undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Our faculty/staff includes Dr. Glenn Schaft-Associate Professor and Director, Rob Ferguson-Adjunct Instructor and Director of the YSU Drumline, and Nathan Douds-Adjunct Instructor, two graduate assistants, and several undergraduate assistants. The YSU Percussion Program is recognized as one of the premiere “Total Percussion” opportunities in the United States and the worldwide success of our graduates is a testament to this reputation. Our educational philosophy is based on a balanced “Total Percussion” experience. Each student receives private lessons, small group lessons, and studio seminar classes on a weekly basis from our faculty. Our curriculum includes fundamentals of sound production and technique in world percussion, drumset, snare drum, keyboards, timpani, multiple percussion, and orchestral accessories. Each student performs chamber music with the Percussion Ensemble and has the opportunity to take additional courses such as Percussion Methods and Percussion Literature.
YSU Percussion Ensemble is one of the premiere ensembles at the Dana School of Music and performs frequently for diverse audiences. For example, in 1999-2000, we performed for over 9000 people. Annual campus performances include the Butler Institute of American Art, the Kilcawley Center, the Dana School of Music Showcase Concert, and the Dana Convocation. Off-campus performances typically include the Ohio Music Educators Association Convention, the Percussive Arts Society Ohio Chapter Day of Percussion, and other regional tours. The group’s repertoire includes diverse musical styles from around the world. Small ensembles within the course include the Contemporary Percussion Group, Marimba Ensembles, Drum Circle, and various Latin and World Percussion Groups - which include various ethnic percussion styles such as West African, Afro-Cuban, and Brazilian styles. We also perform student compositions.
YSU Percussion Ensemble Performance Highlights: