Miami University faculty present ‘Portraits In Contrast’ chamber recital in Hamilton gallery

HAMILTON — Music and art will come together as faculty members from Miami University College of Creative Arts present a chamber recital, “Portraits In Contrast” in a gallery at the Fitton Center on Sunday afternoon.

“This is something we’ve been looking to do for many years. So, for the first time, we are going to have a chamber music event in the Bever West Gallery at the Fitton Center,” said Ian MacKenzie-Thurley, executive director of the Fitton Center.

The chamber recital will begin at 3 p.m. The concert is free and open to the public. No tickets are required.

MacKenzie-Thurley said this is a great opportunity for the community to engage with the talented artists who are performing, and it also expands the Fitton Center’s reach into Oxford. He said Dr. Wallis Vore, instructor of clarinet, at Miami first approached him about the opportunity.

“We continue to invite all members of the community, from different cultures, and different musical and artistical styles to reach out to the Fitton Center. We’re always open to partnerships and are continually looking at ways we can work together. Because when we do things together, we’re stronger, we’re more interesting, and we support a broader base, which we’re very much focused on at the Fitton Center,” MacKenzie-Thurley said.

It’s vital to our mission that we are working with local artists and that we’re able to support them both in our galleries and performance spaces, he said.

“This has been given to us as a gift from these performers, who are faculty members at Miami University, Oxford, and it’s a perfect way to spend your Sunday afternoon. After you finish lunch, or church, you can stroll through the galleries at the Fitton center, see art on display from a number of local artists, and hear chamber music from these incredibly talented musicians,” MacKenzie-Thurley said.

Made up primarily of woodwinds faculty, the performers will include Vore, an instructor of clarinet; Dr. Morrigan O’Brien Kane, instructor of flute; Dr. Aaron Pergram, assistant professor of bassoon; Ms. Andrea Ridilla, professor of oboe and Dr. Siok Lian Tan, associate professor of piano.

“All of us are faculty at Miami University, and that is at the Oxford campus, which is the only campus that houses the department of music…Some of the regional campuses offer music classes, but this is the only place where music learning happens on instruments, the orchestra, and ensembles,” said Aaron Pergram, assistant professor of bassoon and one of the group’s performers.

A big part of what musicians do is give concerts, and we like to go out into the community, he said.

“We love collaborating with one another, and we also enjoy sharing music outside of the Oxford campus. We do have a regional campus in Hamilton, so we thought it would be great to go to Hamilton and the Fitton Center seemed like a wonderful opportunity to not only engage with the community, but to partner with the arts scene that is going on at the Fitton Center and in Hamilton,” Pergram said.

There will be four musical selections on the program, including “Quatuor” by Jean Francaix.

“It’s very light and articulate. It’s got an effervescence to it, and it showcases the winds in a way that brings high energy, and it exaggerates each of the instruments characteristics and qualities,” Pergram said.

Other selections on the program include “Four Sketches” by Peter Hope; “Three Observations for Three Woodwinds, Op 41 by Mabel Daniels and “Trio Pathétique” by Mikhail Glinka.

“You can take a moment to look at that painting, and it washes over you, and you see the different colors and techniques, so I called the program, ‘Portraits In Contrast,’ because this concert gives us four different pieces with mixed instrumentation. So, the listener can come and experience this group of instruments in multiple combinations, and they can say, ‘wow, the clarinet sounds so different in this piece than it does in that piece, and the same is true with the other instruments. Listeners will be able to sense the virtuosity, flexibility and nuances that these instruments can bring to an audience, so that’s what is special about this program,” Pergram said.

The “Biennial Fitton Center Member Show,” will be on display in the gallery. The exhibition highlights the work of Fitton Center members from across the region. The show features 73 artworks by 70 different artists.

How to go

What: “Portraits In Contrast,” a chamber recital presented by Miami University faculty

When: 3 p.m. Sunday

Where: Fitton Center for Creative Arts, Bever West Gallery, 2nd Floor, 101 S. Monument Ave., Hamilton

Cost: Free

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