Extra, Extra!

Even though this post doesn’t have effusive ASL interpreting, I hope it’s informative. The big news here is that I’ve accepted an appointment as Visiting Lecturer in Percussion at Cornell University, where I’m director of the Steel Band and World Drum and Dance Ensemble.  Although I’ve always prided myself on being a total drum nerd, these two genres of music are relatively new to me.  I’m humbled to have been given the opportunity to start exploring, and so far both bands are sounding great, no thanks to me.  More information about the program is available here.

If you’re in the Ithaca area on November 16th, you can hear the fruits of this semester’s work: a joint concert featuring the Cornell Steel Band and WDDE, with special guests Nukporfe, Dr. James Burns’ crack team of Ewe drummers and dancers from Binghamton University.  Nukporfe really smokes, as these videos will attest.  This free concert will begin with the Steel Band at 6:00 on Ho Plaza.  WDDE and Nukporfe will follow inside Willard Straight Hall: more information is available here.

Cornell has a vibrant music scene, and I’m excited to get involved.  Stay tuned for for some recitals and other performances, but in the meantime you can catch me with the Cornell Chorale on November 30th, for a performance of Vincent Persichetti’s Winter Cantata for women’s voices, marimba, and flute.

What’s next for New Morse Code?  On November 20th, we’ll  premiere a new piece by Caroline Shaw on thePrinceton Sound Kitchen’s series (formerly the Princeton Composer’s Ensemble).  I can’t wait!  Also on the Princeton show is the ever amazing Janus Trio.  Stay tuned tonewmorsecode.com for the latest telegraphs.

Lastly, this semester I’m filling in for Ayano Kataoka as lecturer in percussion at UMass Amherst. The studio is a great group of people: nice enough to put up with my terrible puns, at least.  I’m honored and humbled to be put in charge of such a great percussion ensemble.  If you’re in the area, please check out our joint concert with the UMass Symphony Band on December 4th at the UMass Fine Arts Center, featuring some classic chamber percussion repertoire.

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Hope to see you soon!

Mike