Stringing the Continents Together with the HSU Guitar Ensemble

HSU’s Guitar Ensemble continues this year’s world music tour with tunes from all seven continents (sort of) in their spring concert April 18 in Fulkerson Recital Hall.

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The HSU Guitar Ensemble.

“We will perform famous compositions, modern works by living composers, arrangements of folk music, and do a little improvising as well,” said Guitar Ensemble director and HSU Music professor Nicholas Lambson. “Students took the initiative to put together several of the pieces, including arrangements of jazz, blues and metal pieces.”

In various combinations, members of the Guitar Ensemble perform two pieces representing North America (a blues and a Broadway tune), three from South America (from Brazil, Peru and Argentina), and five pieces from western and eastern Europe (including dances from Ireland, Spain and Romania.)

Philip Houghton’s “Lament” represents Australia, while works from Japan and Indonesia illustrate different styles of Asian music. “An African Puzzle” from Dusan Bogdanovic’s World Music Primer represents that continent.

As for the seventh — “To Live is to Die” is a tune by Metallica, an American band that played a concert in Antarctica.

One piece (“Cote Sud” by contemporary French composer Roland Dyens) features eight guitarists. “This is one of the largest groups we have had involved in one piece,” notes Lambson. “Putting it all together with the big group has been challenging but also a lot of fun. This may also be the last concert for this talented group of guitarists, since several will be graduating, and a few of the alumni performing with us may be moving on as well. I think this piece is a great way to culminate their time here as a part of the HSU Guitar Ensemble and studio, and I am really looking forward to sharing the stage with them for that.”

The Guitar Ensemble includes Kenneth Bozanich, Sandee Castaneda, Alex Diaz, Jason Hall, Nick Hart, Allen Hernandez, Bryant Kellison, Kris Lang, Nicholas Lambson, Alex Lopez, Jake Masterson, Leo Plummer, Justin Santos, Leonardo Simmons, Charlie Sleep, Rory Urquhart and Greg Willis.

The HSU Guitar Ensemble performs on Friday April 18 at 8 p.m. in Fulkerson Recital Hall on the HSU campus in Arcata. Tickets are $8/$5, free to HSU students with ID, from HSU Ticket Office (826-3928) or at the door. For more information, visit hsumusic.blogspot.com. An HSU Music Department production.