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Published on Sep 27, 2013
Kicking off the Convocation, four School of Music faculty members gave a special collaborative performance of "Summer Thing," an original composition by associate professor of performance studies Nicholas Walker. The arrangement featured Walker (bass) and fellow School of Music faculty members Frank Campos (trumpet), Greg Evans (Drums), and Mike Titlebaum (sax).
"Summer Thing" is a simple tune designed for jamming. Because it consists of only a few harmonies and a straightforward upbeat groove, emphasis is placed on the interaction between musicians and the performers' connection with the audience. (Bridges.) To further authenticate the special energy in authentic interactive group improvisation the performers deliberately did not rehearse this piece before the convocation. The ensemble has never played it together before, and did not use any sheet music. (Walls.) Instead, Frank Campos, Mike Titlebaum, and Greg Evans listened to a recording of the tune from Walker's 2000 CD release, Message in a Bateau. In this way, these three IC professors are making private, intimate connections with the NYC band Walker used to work with, and thus, the unique creativity and spontaneity from 2000 will find its way to anyone who attended Dean Paulnack's inspiring talk. (Bridges!)