Percussion enthusiasts of all kinds attending this year’s Percussive Arts Society International Convention will be treated to a performance by the Lawrence University Percussion Ensemble (LUPÉ), which earned a special invitation by winning the organization’s 2014 International World Percussion Ensemble Competition earlier this year.
Twenty-three members of LUPÉ will share the spotlight when they take the stage Thursday, Nov. 20 in Indianapolis, Ind., as one of the three-day conference’s featured performers.This will be LUPÉ’s second appearance on the international stage under the direction of Professor of Music Dane Richeson. LUPÉ previously performed at the international conference in Phoenix, Ariz., after winning the 1995 PAS collegiate percussion ensemble competition.
“I am so proud of my students and am honored that LUPÉ has won an ensemble competition by the Percussive Arts Society for the second time,” said Richeson, who has directed Lawrence’s percussion studio since 1984. “This convention is the largest gathering of percussion artists, teachers, students, manufacturers and publishers in the world, so being invited to perform a showcase concert there is indeed an accomplishment in which we can take great pride.”
LUPÉ — featuring the Sambistas, a Brazilian drumming corps, Kinkaviwo, a Ghanaian drum and dance group and Tambotoke´, an Afro-Cuban group — was selected the winner of the PAS-sponsored World Percussion Competition from among submitted video tapes. The competition is open to high school and college/university ensembles performing non-Western percussion-based music. Lawrence’s submission was from its March 2014 concert in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel.
“Many of the student directors of our ensembles have received grants to travel to these countries and study with master musicians similar to the ones I have had opportunities to study with during my sabbaticals there,” he added. “It fills me with pride to see our students embrace this music as if it was from their own culture.”
The Percussive Arts Society International Convention is the world’s largest percussion event, featuring more than 120 concerts, clinics, master classes, labs, workshops, panels and presentations. Ensembles from the University of Kentucky, Oklahoma State University and Yale University will join LUPÉ as performance winners from other PAS-sponsored competition categories.
About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2015 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.