Percussion Ensemble

Williams Percussion Ensemble

The Williams College Department of Music presents the Williams Percussion Ensemble on Saturday, April 29 at 8 p.m. in Chapin Hall on the Williams campus. This free event is open to the public.

Williams Percussion Ensemble (WiPE) presents its spring concert titled Platform. Directed by Matthew Gold, and joined by several guests, WiPE performs music from around the world and discovers new sounds and rhythms.

Steven Snowden’s A Man With A Gun Lives Here is a work based on the “Hobo Code,” a system of symbols left by hobos for one another in their travels. The symbols indicate places to camp and find a meal, and to alert one another to danger. In this work three percussionists play the bass drum in surprising ways, using it as a resonating surface for steel plates, rubber balls, and a paper bag containing 3 pounds of loose buckshot.

WiPE is joined by the Axxea String Quartet, made up by Williams students and faculty, for There and Not Here, by the young Puerto Rican-born composer and multi-instrumentalist Angélica Negrón. There and Not Here is a work about daydreaming inspired by the composer’s road trips in her homeland. String quartet, percussion, and members of the Zambezi Marimba Band present an arrangement of Ungundi Wele Wele by the group Konono N°1, from the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Pianist Stephen Ai ‘18 is featured on Karlheinz Stockhausen’s groundbreaking Kreuzspiel (Crossplay), a 1951 work for piano, percussion trio, oboe, and bass clarinet. WiPE is excited to premiere a new work by ensemble member Samantha Stone ‘17. Omolete de Mioleira for bass guitar, electric guitar, and percussion travels from deep sonic abysses through syncopated rhythmic attacks and improvisation.

Saturate for saxophone, electric guitar, piano, and percussion by downtown avant-garde titan Elliott Sharp is a controlled improvisation packed with timbral transformation, variable densities, and hocketed grooves. The program is rounded out by Christopher Adler’s “Signals Intelligence,” a piece for percussion sextet that explores information density in electronic transmissions in a work that sounds as if it being performed on a makeshift gamelan.