Stephen F. Austin State University

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SFA Wind Ensemble to perform compositions dedicated to light, shadow

April 1, 2016 - Robbie Goodrich
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin State University Wind Ensemble will present the concert "Luminosity: Tributes to Light and Shadow" at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 12, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus.

Featured on the concert will be the music of composers Steven Bryant, Darius Milhaud, Joseph Schwantner and Alexander Scriabin, who was famous for his study of the relationship between light, color and sound, according to Dr. David Campo, associate director of bands at SFA and the ensemble's conductor.

The concert will open with Bryant's "In This Broad Earth," a short, intense fanfare commissioned by Michigan State University. Bryant based the fanfare on Walt Whitman's poem "Song of the Universal" from his collection "Leaves of Grass."

Later in his life, Scriabin's compositions would reflect his obsession with the phenomenon known as synesthesia, Campo explained. His Prelude and Nocturne, Op. 9, which is on the program, highlights the contrasts of light and shadow inherent in the piano.

"Scriabin composed this work for left hand alone at piano after he injured his right hand attempting to master Chopin on the instrument," Campo said. Transcribed for band by Alfred Reed, Nocturne, Op. 9 No. 2 showcases the wind band's sonic light and shadow.

The first half of the concert concludes with Milhaud's "Suite Francaise," a statement by the composer of the darkness of war contrasted with the bright light of freedom and democracy, Campo said.

The concert will conclude with Schwantner's "Luminosity: Concerto for Wind Orchestra."

"SFA was part of the consortium that commissioned this seminal work from this modern master," Campo said.

Numerous distinctions and awards have marked Schwantner's compositional career. In 1979, his orchestral composition "Aftertones of Infinity" won the Pulitzer Prize.

"Schwantner has written several works for wind ensemble and is widely recognized as a modern American master of the genre," Campo said. "Cast in three movements, 'Luminosity' is bookended by material that exploits the wind, brass and percussion sections, with a mini-concerto for solo clarinet at its center."

Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit www.finearts.sfasu.edu.