Three concerts to welcome March at URI


A weekend full of music will start off March at the University of Rhode Island, with three concerts by top Department of Music ensembles. The URI Concert Band will offer classic band music on Friday, March 2, the URI Symphony Orchestra concert will feature the winners of the URI Concerto Solo Competition on March 3, and the URI Symphonic Wind Ensemble will offer a combined performance with the URI Concert Choir as well as the premier of a new work by composer Eliane Aberdam on March 4. In addition, the Rhode Island Percussive Arts Society will hold its annual festival, open to the public, on that Saturday from 1-5 p.m.

All events will be held in the URI Fine Arts Center Concert Hall, 105 Upper College Road, Kingston. Tickets, available on a first-come basis starting 45 minutes before each concert, are $10 general admission and $5 for students at the concert hall box office.

The Concert Band, directed by Brian Cardany, will perform at 8 p.m. Their program includes Three Pieces for American Band - Set No. 2 by Timothy Broege, a three movement contemporary work inspired by 16th and 17th century instrumental music; and Caccia and Chorale by Clifton Williams, which was the last wind band work by Williams before he died of cancer in the 1970s. Also on the program are Kaddish by W. Francis McBeth, a tribute to C. Williams which utilizes a motive from the Caccia and Chorale; Fortress by Frank Ticheli, one of the prolific composer's first wind band works; and Shadow Rituals by Michael Markowski, which was written for – and won – the Frank Ticheli Composition Contest about six years ago.

Performances by three students who won the solo spots through the orchestra’s challenging concerto competition will highlight the Symphony Orchestra’s concert on Saturday March 3 at 8 p.m. North Kingstown resident Erin Maughn, Soprano, will be the soloist for Caro Nome by G. Verdi. C. Chaminade’s Concertino for Flute will feature Dalita Getzoyan from Lincoln, and Concerto for Alto Saxophone by R. Muczynski will be performed by Molly Hammell of Killingworth, Conn. The orchestra program also includes Bugler's Dream by Leo Arnaud, and Marche Slav by Tchaikovsky. The orchestra is directed by Ann Danis.

Joined by the URI Concert Choir under the direction of Mark Conley, the Symphonic Wind Ensemble will present their Winter concert on Sunday, March 4, at 3 p.m., featuring the premier of Zamarine, a new work by composer and URI faculty member Eliane Aberdam, and Michigan Morn by H. Owen Reed, to be performed by choir and wind ensemble. Aberdam’s piece, which is based on Klezmer music melodies, takes its name from the Hebrew word Zemer. The Yiddish word Klezmer comes from the Hebrew KLEY (instruments) and ZEMER (of music, literally “that sing”). The Reed piece, taken from Reed's suite The Touch of the Earth, was originally published in 1987 as The Heart of the Morn. It opens with a mezzo soprano solo (soloist to be announced), followed by the chorus and wind ensemble accompaniment.

Also on the program are: To Set The Darkness Echoing by Dana Wilson, a tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr.; Fantasy On A Japanese Folk Song by Samuel Hazo, based on a Japanese doyo (child's song) "Sunayama"; Strange Humors by John Mackey, a striking blend of musical cultures using modal melodies and syncopated rhythms of Middle Eastern music with the groove of West African djembe drumming; and Three Gymnopedies by Eric Satie, originally three piano compositions written by the French composer and pianist published in Paris in 1888. Collectively, the Gymnopédies are regarded as an important precursor to modern 20th century music — gentle yet somewhat eccentric pieces which, when composed, defied the classical tradition. The Wind Ensemble is directed by Gene J. Pollart.

The URI Concert Hall is handicap-accessible, and parking is available in the lot behind the Fine Arts Center, off Bills Road.

For more information, please contact the URI Department of Music, 874-2431, or check the website,


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