SRU Co-Commissions Compositions for a Concert

Slippery Rock University works with Eastern New Mexico University to co-commission six compositions for flute and clarinet melodies as part of a concert series at Westminster College on March 6, and at the SRU on March 12.

[Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania, January 29, 2014] – Slippery Rock University (SRU) assistant professor of music, Kathleen Melago, has co-commissioned six compositions for flute and clarinet melodies as part of an upcoming concert series. Melago and Jennifer Laubenthal, assistant professor of clarinet at Eastern New Mexico University, are set to perform the six works on March 6 at Westminster College and on March 12 at Slippery Rock University.

A Meticulous Process

After writing the pieces, six composers e-mailed the works to Melago and Laubenthal for review. The two professors combined their parts to make sure that the pieces are cohesive. They asked the respective composers to write their pieces last spring. The two professors then received the first of six pieces in August and the last in December.

Working with six composers, Melago and Laubenthal are ready to bring their music to audiences in their upcoming performances at Westminster College and SRU. Stephen Barr, assistant professor of music at SRU, wrote Evocation for Flute and Bb Clarinet, and Sean Hamilton, an SRU music graduate wrote Five Thoughts on Vitality.

The first piece by Barr aims to move listeners to a daydream and indulge in flights of fancy, while Hamilton’s piece deals with systematic 12-tone compositional techniques that bring intuitive compositional thoughts.

Other commissioned compositions include Fantasy on Colombian-Andean Folk Rhythms by German Alberto Parada, a Colombia-based composer who dedicated his piece to Melago and Laubenthal, and Tamburitza Dances by G. Kahkonen, a Pennsylvania flute teacher.

A Collaboration of Two Driven Musicians

Melago and Laubenthal earned their doctorates in music from The Ohio State University as classmates. “Commissioning compositions provides a pledge that the works created will be performed, meaning other people will hear the work and might want to purchase it,” Melago said in an interview.

The two musicians are thinking of adding additional performances as the spring season gets closer. Melago and Laubenthal hope to perform their pieces at conferences and eventually to make a recording.

About Slippery Rock University

Since 1889, Slippery Rock University (SRU) has been providing remarkable learning experience by incorporating traditional academic instruction with reinforced educational opportunities to help students flourish. With over 400 faculty members, SRU caters to thousands of students, with the mission to stimulate growth and development in all facets of educational life.

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