Over the next few weeks, the University of Southern Mississippi School of Music will host several performances featuring guest artists from the South in a Guest Artist Recital Series. The artists featured in this series have performed all over the world and have each been featured in a national format.
The School of Music will host bassoonist Keith McClelland on Jan. 25. McClelland, who teaches bassoon at the University of Tennessee and the Tennessee Governors School for the Arts, performed as principal bassoonist with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra from 1972 to 2008.
According to his U of T web page, McClelland performed in numerous chamber music groups including the Lyric Chamberwinds, a trio that performed at the International Double Reed Society Conference in Manchester, England.
The School of Music will present pianist and Delta State associate professor Jung-Won Shin on Jan. 26. Shin has performed many solo concerts and has won prizes in numerous chamber music and concerto competitions.
According to her Delta State web page, Shin was featured in the Beethoven Sonata Recital Series of Yamaha Artist Services in New York as well as a Rising Stars Concert at the Orford Summer Music Academy and Festival in Canada. She released a collaborative album in 2010, and she was selected to perform at the Biennial International Conference of the College Music Society in Seoul, Korea in 2011.
On Feb. 1, the School of Music will present another accomplished bassoonist: Andrew Brady. According to his Louisiana Philharmonic web page, Brady has performed with the Seattle Symphony, the Los Angeles Opera Company and, since 2013, the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra. During his time in Los Angeles, Brady also performed as a teaching artist for the Harmony Project, helping underprivileged children learn to play the bassoon.
The School of Music will host Robert Sims and the Ritz Chamber Players as part of their Connoisseur Series on Feb. 2. The Ritz Chamber Players is based out of Jacksonville, Florida, and its members have performed with the New York Philharmonic, Pittsburgh Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, the Boston Symphony, Chicago Symphony and the London Symphony.
According to its website, the group features musicians Terrance Patterson on clarinet; Ann Hobson Pilot on harp; Kelly Hall-Tompkins, Orlando Wells and Kyle Lombard on violin; Tahirah Whittington, Caleb Jones and Kenneth Law on cello; Demarre McGill and Judy Dines on flute; Terrance Wilson, Kevin Sharpe, Stewart Goodyear, David Berry and Leon Bates on Piano; and George Taylor on the viola. The Players also feature vocalist Robert Sims as a lyric baritone and Alison Buchanan as a soprano vocalist.
The Ritz Chamber Players has been called “extraordinary, vital and fresh” by critics. The group appeared on television at the 37th annual NAACP Image Awards as a result of their mission to showcase the works of African-American composers and promote a diverse and multicultural audience.
USM senior music education major Jack Bounds said guest recitals are an especially good opportunity for music majors to see professional musicians, and a number of music classes encouraged to to attend recitals like these.
“Students will have recital credits for attending events,” Bounds said. “We have to get a certain number of credits and we always end up going over.”
Bounds said he hopes he will be free to attend the upcoming guest recitals.
“Any opportunity I have to be at the recitals, I will go,”Bounds said.
Percussion graduate student Ian Meiman said the fact that the School of music hosts so many musical events each year illustrates the school’s dedication to the craft. He hopes those in the community outside of the School of Music will attend as well.
“We bring some big names,” Meiman said.