Local Music

Hear interviews with guests on music programs produced here at WMUK, as well as program news.

Thad Stalmack II, artist

The five members of the neo-fusion band Lushh, formed in 2015 by a group of advanced and adventurous jazz students, have been spending a lot of time outside the familiar hallways of Western Michigan University's School of Music. They've been gaining real-world experience in venues from Chicago, to Detroit, and beyond, playing for new audiences, forging new connections, and now, going on tour with a new full-length album. It will be available on Wednesday, April 24 in a performance at the Kalamazoo State Theatre. Lushh will open for Boney James at 7:30 pm. 

In the studio with Cara Lieurance, the members of Lushh - saxophonist Eddie Codrington, guitarist Andrew Saliba, keyboardist Grayson Nye, bassist Matthew Epperson, and drummer Madison George - talk about their commitment to their sound and the strategies that have helped them follow their path.  


Hans van der Woerd

Fontana will present a concert of Brahms, Mozart, and Dohnanyi by Camerata RCO on Thursday, April 18 at 7:30 pm in the Dalton Center Recital Hall at WMU. Cara Lieurance talks with violinist Annebeth Webb, who tells the story of how the group was started . It began not as a calculated offshoot of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, but rather at the invitation of hosts who housed members of the orchestra on summer vacation in Italy.

Webb explains that although playing in the RCO is a full-time job, the musicians still love to branch out with chamber music when they can. She helped organize Camerata RCO based on the interest and availability of her fellow RCO players. In her experience, the orchestra taught her how to interpret the musical languages of many composers - Brahms for example - through their symphonic works, which ends up adding a lot to how she interprets their chamber music.


Elvert Jones, via Flickr, all creative commons

Austin McWilliams, a candidate for a masters degree in choral conducting from Western Michigan University, has turned his master's recital into a musical event with a message: HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention. Along with Dave Watt of CARES - Community AIDS Resource and Education Service - McWilliams discusses how he put the program together to highlight different aspects of the HIV story, with John Corigliano's Of Rage And Remembrance serving as the centerpiece. During the program, speakers from CARES will share information and poetry between musical selections. Panels from the AIDS Quilt will be on display at the concert, which begins at 7:30 pm on Wednesday, April 17 in the Dalton Center Recital Hall at Western Michigan University.


NASA

The Kalamazoo Concert Band's final concert of the season will mark an historic anniversary: the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing in July, 1969. Along with selections including music from John Williams' Star Wars, Offenbach's Voyage to The Moon, and Todd Stalter's Ignition,  projected images from NASA's missions will accompany the music. Michael Keeler, a senior at Portage Central High School, will appear as the winner of the KCB's Youth Soloist Competition. Tom Evans discusses the concert with Cara Lieurance in this interview.


WMU School of Music

On the eve of the 60th annual WMU Concerto concert, the three winning soloists--  trumpeter Brent Proseus and soprano Caitlin Borke, both from Michigan, and violinist Negar Afazel, from Iran-- join Cara Lieurance to preview their concertos and talk about their individual musical journeys. The free concert is Sunday, April 14 at 3 pm in Miller Auditorium. Andrew Koehler will conduct the Western Michigan University Symphony Orchestra. 


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