Percussion Extravaganza brings unique percussion performances to Missouri Theater

School of Music will bring a percussive lineup to the Missouri Theatre on Sunday.

When: 3 p.m. Sunday

Where: Missouri Theatre

Tickets: Free for students

It’s a big campus. How can you decide between attending a volleyball game, investigating downtown’s tattoo parlors and simply hanging out at the Rec, all while failing to consider what MU’s music department offers?

Come Sunday, the decision will prove to be far simpler. The School of Music will be directing a performance entitled Percussion Extravaganza that is set to explore various aspects of the always sensational instrumental section, while providing a wide range of guest appearances and exotic pieces, leaving room for all the excitement and intriguing nature an MU-sponsored musical event includes.

The event encompasses the assortment of percussion-based categories the School of Music prides itself on, with performances coming from the Marching Mizzou Drumline, University Percussion Ensemble and MUSteel, the university steel drum band. In addition to the MU-only lineup, the Lee Elementary World Drumming Ensemble will be performing a few pieces.

A great range of different percussionists of various styles and genres will be on hand, demonstrating the multitalented percussion students at MU. With the mixture of talent presented, spectators are guaranteed a taste of percussion pleasure.

“This is our annual fall percussion concert,” says Julia Gaines, associate professor of percussion studies and director of Percussion Extravaganza. “We’ve been doing it for at least 12 years, and it’s become increasingly popular.”

Even with the multitude of spectacular percussion pieces presented at the Percussion Extravaganza, there is one act attendees consistently praise.

“By far the most popular of the acts tend to be the steel drum band,” Gaines says. “We are fortunate enough to have a full Caribbean band that rehearses as part of our Percussion Ensemble, and they are always a favorite of the concert.”

Pieces that will be presented include three by the steel drum band, two by the Lee Elementary students, two performed by a quartet of MU percussion students (coming right off of a percussion festival in Puerto Rico) and one by Maraca2, a guest duo of professional percussionists currently on tour.

Gaines hopes MU students will come to realize why the Percussion Extravaganza will be a worthwhile event.

“I can almost guarantee (MU students) have never heard anything like what they’ll hear at the concert,” Gaines says. “It’s not like your typical orchestra performance. The elementary school kids performing will also be something nice and unique for students to see. And everybody loves the steel drum band.”

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