Music school to feature guest artists and student work at clarinet symposium on Saturday

Lauren Post

Staff Writer

The John M. Long School of Music is preparing for its annual Clarinet Day, a celebration of clarinetists of all ages and playing levels, which takes place this Saturday, March 24.

“It’s been a tradition over the years since the 1960s,” said Timothy Phillips, an associate professor of music and the director of Clarinet Day.

The program is composed of both students of the school of music and high school clarinetists. It provides opportunities for growth in their instruments.

“Normally, you would need to go to an international conference or a large city to experience the high level of musicianship displayed by the artists on Clarinet Day,” said Jenifer Fraley, a lecturer of music.

Troy University’s Clarinet Day is one of the largest clarinet symposiums in the United States, according to Fraley.

Phillips said the program would be a full day for all students involved, working intricately with the selected repertoire for the evening concert and learning from visiting professionals.

“Throughout the day, interspersed with the rehearsals are masterclasses with some of the guest artists,” said Phillips.

These guest artists include bass clarinetist Michael Lowenstern of New York City and clarinetist Maria du Toit of the Netherlands, who have played alongside orchestras such as The New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and The Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra.

“You learn so much from these concerts and masterclasses, and it truly makes you focus more on how you play the instrument,” said Luis de la Fuente, a freshman music education major from Panama City Beach, Florida.

Lowenstern and du Toit, as well as Troy’s School of Music students and faculty, will be showcasing their talents in several performances throughout the day.

Troy students will be playing alongside and helping the high school musicians participate in the event.

“It’s a fun process to teach and also be taught and is especially beneficial to our music education majors who want to be band directors or teach clarinet one day,” said Kelsey Miller, a senior sport management major and clarinetist for the Clarinet Choir at Troy.

Under the direction of Phillips, Troy students have been preparing for this day all semester.

“I have been working diligently on the music I will be performing on Saturday as a part of the larger group with high school students, the Troy Clarinet Studio and in the student-led ensemble I will also perform with,” said Logan Stevens, a sophomore music education major from Montgomery.

Clarinet Day not only gives students recognition for their hard work, but also gives Troy University recognition internationally. Phillips noted that Saturday’s performance will be recorded in the International Clarinet Journal, a publication that is received by countries all around the world.

Phillips said after Saturday’s final concert, “people around the world will know about Troy University’s Clarinet Day.”

Clarinet Day will be held in John M. Long Hall from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. It will have four concerts throughout the day, all open to the public for free, showcasing bass clarinets, clarinets, solo performances, and a clarinet choir.

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