September 20, 2014  

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International Composer Zaimont Headlines Wind Ensemble Concert

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Internationally recognized composer Judith Lang Zaimont will perform her newly commissioned “Concerto for Piano and Wind Orchestra” with The University of Southern Mississippi Wind Ensemble at 7:30 p.m., Thurs., Nov. 4 in Bennett Auditorium.

Internationally praised for dramatic, emotional and vibrant works, Zaimont has been described as “a serious artist, formidably endowed, and capable of a broad audience appeal” by Fanfareand “a composer of the first rank-a mid-career master” by New Music Connoisseur.The New York Timeshas described her music as"exquisitely crafted, vividly characterized and wholly appealing.”

As guest composer-in-residence, Zaimont will spend one week in Hattiesburg thanks to a sponsorship from Partners for the Arts and University Bands.

The Thursday night program includes Zaimont’s work “Concerto for Piano and Wind Orchestra ‘Solar Traveller’”which is inspired by the vastness, wonder and beauty of sky and space. Southern Miss commissioned this work along with seven other universities from across the nation.

Elizabeth Moak, pianist featured in the “Concerto” performance and Southern Miss faculty member, hopes others will take advantage of the opportunity to hear performances by a living American composer.

“Her works have been performed in Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and many other important U.S. venues, as well as abroad,” said Moak. “Orchestras such as the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Baltimore Symphony, the Berlin Radio Orchestra, the Czech Radio Orchestra and the Kremlin Chamber Orchestra have performed and/or commissioned her works.”

The Ocean Springs Middle School Symphonic Band, with Southern Miss alumna Anna Schwartz conducting, will perform a 3-minute piece of Zaimont’s work titled “City Rain” during the Nov. 4 concert.

Zaimont will also speak briefly in conjunction with a concert devoted to her chamber music as part of the Honors College Forum at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 2 in Bennett Auditorium. Zaimont’s chamber works to be featured include a piano trio, a song cycle, two short solo piano works and a woodwind quintet. Guest performersinclude Trio Appassionato along with Southern Miss faculty Taylor Hightower, Mary Chung, Elizabeth Moak, and the faculty woodwind quintet Category 5.

Dr. Thomas Fraschillo, director of bands at Southern Miss and conductor for the “Concerto” and two other works on the Thursday program, describes the program as a “tour de force” for both piano and wind ensemble. Under Fraschillo’s direction, the Wind Ensemble has received national acclaim and stands as the premiere concert band at Southern Miss.

The Thursday Wind Ensemble Concert is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the School of Music at 601.266.6855. For more information on Zaimont, visit www.jzaimont.com. For a complete listing and details of the week's events, visit www.usm.edu/musictheory/integral/.