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September 19, 2018

Electronic-Music Innovator To Open Focus On Faculty series


OSWEGO — Composer and SUNY Oswego music faculty member Dr. Paul Leary will present electronic music influenced by Nirvana, display a game-derived video project and feature live local instrumentalists at 3 p.m. Sept. 20, in Sheldon Hall ballroom.

Leary’s “Perfume” will highlight the event, which launches the college’s 2015 Focus on Faculty Series, featuring seven performances throughout the school year.

Music department colleague Robert Auler, coordinator of the series, will accompany Leary’s work on piano Sept. 20.

The Focus on Faculty music series, hosted by Artswego, will again feature a wide range of genres. Vocalists, pianists, a wind instrument specialist, a jazz combo and a chamber trio will enliven the concerts that follow Leary’s upcoming performance.

Leary said the opening concert would “open everyone’s mind about what electronic music can be.”

Selections will include Leary’s work for blacksmith’s anvil and live processing. The highlight, though, is “Perfume.”

“The biggest piece is something that Rob Auler and I have been working on that uses some of Nirvana’s music that has been reimagined for an original electronic sound,” Leary said. “Kurt Cobain’s vocals can be heard throughout in an abstract way.”

The performance that Leary is planning involves traditional instruments played live, in conjunction with a composition created on software Leary made.

The software includes Max 7 visual programming, as well as a video game joystick that has been modified for song composition.

Auler played a portion of this material for an audience in Chicago “and they went absolutely crazy about it,” Auler said, and other musicians “even asked Paul to arrange some material for their sets as well, after hearing that piece.”

The video will include a scene created with footage from EVE Online, an Internet-based video game.

“The video itself is essentially a movie trailer for this game, describing the book written about it,” Leary said. “It shows the history of the battles that take place within the game and pairs well with the music.”

The composer added, “There will be some improvisation and some recorded material played that, together, will really surprise the audience.”

Diverse offerings

Tickets for each Focus on Faculty performance are $8 ($5 for SUNY Oswego students), and are available at any SUNY Oswego box office, online through tickets.oswego.edu or by calling 315-312-2141.

Parking is included in the price of a ticket, and is available in the lots adjacent to and across Washington Boulevard from Sheldon Hall.

All Focus on Faculty concerts are at 3 p.m. on selected Sundays in Sheldon Hall ballroom.

On Oct. 4, the Oswego Jazz Project will offer jazz standards and originals, featuring Eric Schmitz on drums, Trevor Jorgensen playing saxophone and Auler on piano.

Todd Graber and Friends will offer solo and chamber vocal music on Oct. 18. Soprano Carol Chapman and horn player Lisa Casey will join faculty members Graber, a tenor who is chair of the music department, and pianist and former chair Juan F. La Manna to perform a recital of art songs by Schubert, Debussy, Rorem, Poulenc and Strauss.

Auler will appear Nov. 15 with “Outtakes,” pairing three classical variation sets (Haydn, Beethoven and Mozart) with jazz transcriptions (Jarrett, Evans and Hancock) and explore similarities and differences across the two genres.

On Feb. 14, Jorgensen, playing saxophone and clarinet, will perform with pianist Auler, offering the Dahl Saxophone Concerto, the Nielsen Clarinet Concerto and other masterworks from the 19th and 20th centuries.

Mihoko Tsutsumi and La Manna will perform April 3 a duo piano recital featuring selections by Mozart, Schubert, Ravel, Brahms, Debussy and Piazzolla.

In the April 17 finale for this season’s Focus on Faculty Series, the Lake Effect Trio  – violinist Ahreum Kim, Jorgensen on clarinet and Auler on piano – will present works of Mihaud, Stravinsky and others in concert.

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