Percussion Ensemble

Percussion Ensemble

The Williams College Department of Music presents the Williams College Percussion Ensemble (WiPE) on Friday, Dec. 1 at 8 p.m. in Chapin Hall. This free event is open to the public.

The Williams Percussion Ensemble (WiPE) presents its fall concert, BLEED, on Friday, December 1 at 8 PM in Chapin Hall, on the campus of Williams College. For this program, WiPE invites the audience to join them onstage for an intimate experience of curious sounds and shifty rhythms in music ranging from quiet reflection to driving intensity. David Lang’s Pierced, featuring a trio of student soloists, situates the Zappa-esque rhythms of the solo cello, percussion, and piano in an emotionally turbulent world of edgily buzzing strings. John Cage’s tranquil and radiant Amores pairs the bell-like sonorities of the prepared piano with fingers quietly striking drums and mallets gently touching planks of wood. WiPE celebrates the centenary of pioneering composer Lou Harrison with his First Concerto for Flute and Percussion from 1939, a quiet and lively work for flute with drums, tin can rattles, gongs, bells, and rice bowls. Angélica Negrón’s Count to Five is a whimsical work in which the four percussionists discover the musical potential of a table full of objects such as paper fans, playing cards, newspapers, and wine glasses. Dennis DeSantis’s Shifty for percussion quartet is a driving work for drums, metal pipes, and wooden planks that muddles the listener’s perceptions of meter and tempo, allowing different patterns to bleed into one another and blur one’s sense of the beat. Christine Burke’s for 5+ performers is awash in long tones and blurring colors. For this performance the players will spread out around and amongst the audience, creating acoustic spaces through which sounds can enter and disappear. Featuring: Caroline Tally ‘21, cello; Derek Galvin ‘18, piano; Tiffany Tien ’20, percussion; Calvin Ludwig ‘18, flute; Stephen Ai ‘18, prepared piano and accordion.

About Williams Percussion Ensemble
In programs featuring cutting-edge new music and important works of the twentieth-century, the Williams Percussion Ensemble (WiPE) surveys a vast terrain of sound and rhythm. The ensemble employs all manner of percussion instruments, found sounds, and electronics to create music that resonates across boundaries of genre and discipline. In addition to music for percussion alone, the group presents works for mixed ensembles and new and experimental music for other instruments, and often works directly with composers. The ensemble also collaborates with artists in diverse media in order to explore the connections between different types of sound, form, image, and movement.

About Matthew Gold
Matthew Gold is a percussion soloist and chamber musician who appears across the U.S. and internationally, presenting concert programs, master classes, and lectures. Based in Williamstown, MA and New York City, he is a member of the Talea Ensemble and the Talujon percussion group. Mr. Gold is an Artist in Residence in Percussion and Contemporary Music Performance at Williams College where he directs the Williams Percussion Ensemble, I/O Ensemble, and the annual I/O Festival of New Music. He serves on the faculty of the Wellesley Composers Conference and the Institute and Festival for Contemporary Performance at Mannes College, and has been involved over many years in the Walden School summer music programs. Mr. Gold has appeared as a soloist with such ensembles as Sequitur, the Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival, and the Orchestra of the League of Composers, has been a featured artist on recent festivals including the Darmstadt International Summer Course for New Music; Le Festival Les Musiques in Marseille; and the Warsaw Autumn Festival; and has appeared with the New York Philharmonic on its “Philharmonic 360” program at the Park Avenue Armory. He also performs regularly with the Mark Morris Dance Group; the New York City Ballet; and the Albany Symphony.

“The Williams Percussion Ensemble stood under the warm May sun and sent sharp-edged, tightly organized rhythmic salutes into the Berkshire hills.”

—    The Boston Globe