GVSU to host Clarinet Day for local students

GVL/Kevin Sielaff

GVL/Kevin Sielaff #

Erin Grogan

Students from high schools around Michigan will come to Grand Valley State University for a day dedicated to the improvement of clarinet playing. On March 13, students will start off Clarinet Day in the audience of a recital featuring GVSU clarinet professors Joel Schekman and Arthur Campbell, as well as Italian guest performer Rocco Parisi.

Parisi is an expert clarinet performer and master teacher of both clarinet and bass clarinet at the Antonio Vivaldi Conservatory of Music in Alessandria, Italy. Parisi has performed with orchestras worldwide, recorded numerous CDs and composed music. He also premiered works on bass clarinet including “Sequenza IX C” and “Chemins IIc” by Luciano Berio.

Kaci Seager, a junior clarinet player, helped put the event together. Seager is studying music education with performance honors at GVSU. She attended Clarinet Day as both a high school and college student and is looking forward to meeting Parisi at this year’s event.

“I am also very excited about meeting the participants and seeing them get excited about music,” Seager said. “I hope the participants are able to gain a new insight on music and that it motivates them to take their new skills and sparked interest back to their own performance setting.”

Following the recital, high school participants have the opportunity to perform with university students in a clarinet choir. At the same time, educators from the high schools will participate in a question and answer session with Campbell.

“We want to attract as many students as possible so that young musicians are exposed to positive musical experiences and opportunities,” Seager said. “Clarinet Day is meant to help young clarinetists with practicing strategies and technical problems but, more importantly, is meant to motivate and inspire these students so they are able play with confidence and enjoyment.”

This year, a new segment was added to Clarinet Day in which high school students can learn directly from Campbell. During these sessions, Campbell will teach high school clarinet sections as a whole.

Seager said these are meant to “help the students prepare for upcoming concerts and to work on the difficulties that come with playing as part of a clarinet section.”

The day’s events are designed help students see and understand what they can do with music throughout their college careers.

“From the wonderful music faculty to the friendly students in the program, those who attend Clarinet Day will be able to see the supportive environment that fosters music-making at Grand Valley,” Seager said.

Kati Bayer, a junior at GVSU, helped Seager put Clarinet Day together and has attended the event since she was in high school. During the event, Bayer will introduce speakers and perform for a master class hosted by Parisi.

“I hope Clarinet Day will enhance the knowledge of those attending regarding the clarinet and aspects of playing clarinet,” Bayer said. “Furthermore, I hope that those attending will learn from each other and build a network together.”

Bayer hopes to be a part of the growth of the students who attend the master class.

“I have always enjoyed music and its ability to effect one’s emotions; I cannot wait to share the experience with many young students,” Bayer said.

The event runs from 10 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. and occurs throughout the Performing Arts Center. It is sponsored by GVSU’s Music and Dance department.

To register, visit www.gvsu.edu/music/clarinetday.htm. Participants can also register at 9:45 a.m. in the lobby of the Performing Arts Center.