2019-2020 Season

Thursday, November 7, 2019

The Difficulties

Kennedy-McIlwee Studio Theatre in Thompson Hall     7pm

The Difficulties is an anti-meta, neo-beat, electronic, garage, gospel quartet/band that brings laptop wizardry together with two saxophonists, a percussionist, and an ironist wordsmith.

Brian Lampkin: poet, voice
Susan Fancher, soprano saxophone, voice
Mark Engebretson, computer, keyboards, baritone saxophone
Eric Willie, percussion


Brian Lampkin is an unreliable narrator of his own history, but you can be sure of this: poems were written in between other acts of every day heroism and embarrassment.

Susan Fancher is an internationally-recognized concert saxophonist known for her deep and poetic musical interpretations.  A much sought after performer of new music, she has inspired and premiered over 100 new works for saxophone. She is an active soloist and chamber musician, performing regularly with pianist Inara Zandmane, the Red Clay Saxophone Quartet, Blue Mountain/Forecast Music, and the Women’s Woodwind Ensemble. She teaches saxophone at Duke University and at Wake Forest University.

Eric Willie has a varied career as a percussion soloist, chamber musician, orchestral player, and teacher. As a chamber musician, Dr. Willie performs with Nief-Norf and the Legal Wood Project. An avid promoter of new music, he has commissioned or premiered works by over a dozen composers. He is Director of Percussion Studies at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Composer Mark Engebretson is busy stealing the souls of those in near proximity, injecting shards and shreds directly into the fabric of his music. Dexterity and virtuosity guide explorations that push boundaries of creator, performer and listener. (Without difficulty, how do you know you’re any good?)

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Mark Snyder and Friends

Kennedy-McIlwee Studio Theatre in Thompson Hall     7pm

Mark Snyder is a composer, performer, video artist and teacher living in Jacksonville, Florida. Snyder’s multimedia compositions have been described as “expansive, expressive, extremely human, ….Snyder’s compositions attract performers who resist works with electronics as well as audiences who don’t think they want to hear computer processing.” Dr. Snyder is Assistant Professor of Music Business and Production at Jacksonville University teaching courses in music business, audio production and music technology. He earned his D.M.A. from the University of Memphis and an M.M. from Ohio University. Also performing are clarinetist Andrea Cheeseman, guitarist Taylor Neal, and soprano Emily O’Neal.