WSU Percussion Ensemble Concert Dec. 4

PULLMAN, Wash. — An assortment of percussion works — from a musical representation of a high-speed journey of a fire truck to a composition using tin cans, an electric buzzer and gongs — will be performed by the Washington State University Percussion Ensemble 8 p.m., Dec. 4, in the Kimbrough Concert Hall.

The ensemble will open with “Just Buckets,” a piece in the spirit of the percussion group “Stomp.” The piece was written for three players who play five-gallon plastic buckets with snare drum sticks.

“Life of a Fire Truck,” written by WSU senior percussionist David Niemeyer, is a programmatic musical representation of a fire truck speeding to a fire. Niemeyer wrote the piece in the minimalist style of composers Steve Reich and Philip Glass.

“Marubatoo” is based on a composition for marimba and tuba, while the melodies in “Atenteben,” written by Bob Becker, are based on the atenteben flute ensembles in Ghana. The patterns of the gankogui and the drums used in the piece are loosely based on rhythms found in the traditional Ewe dance music of agbekor and gahu and the urban music of kpanlogo.

A piece by percussion musician John Cage, “Credo in the U.S.,” makes use of graduated sizes of tin cans, an electric buzzer, gongs, record player, radio music and piano. WSU student pianist David Servias will provide piano accompaniment for the piece.

WSU faculty member Julie Ann Wieck will be the featured soloist on the “Three Puerto Rican Songs,” written by Morris Lang. The chamber work — in three movements with lyrics set to the poetry of Ester Feliciano Mendoza — is scored for solo soprano and five percussionists playing a combination of Latin instruments (conga, guiro, claves and shaker) and traditional instruments (concert toms, bass drum and vibraphone). The work makes use of bowls, pipes and brake drums.

For more information, contact David Jarvis, WSU School of Music and Theatre Arts, at 509/335-3929.