November 30, 2009

School of Music presents guitar ensemble concert

by Andrea Hahn

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- The School of Music at Southern Illinois University Carbondale presents a guitar ensemble concert featuring a wide range of classical guitar.

The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 8 in the Old Baptist Foundation Recital Hall. Tickets are $5 for general admission and $3 for students.

The program includes selections from the Baroque period through the 19th Century and the 20th Century. Performances include trios, quartets and a sextet presenting compositions from J. S. Bach, Astor “King of the Tango” Piazzolla, and the popular Blue Tango, composed by Leroy Anderson, among others.

Joseph Breznikar, director of the ensemble and professor of guitar, explained that one feature setting classical guitar apart from other forms of guitar is complexity. A single player represents the bass line, the melody line and fills and other musical embellishments.

When that complexity extends to three or more players, the texture becomes very rich and complex, Breznikar said.

“It all combines to give a woven texture,” he said, noting that in most cases, all guitars are playing different parts. In the case of the sextet, he said, there is some layering, giving the chords a thickness and the lines extra richness.

“Classical guitar requires a really good command of technique,” he said. “It’s a fun program with a lot of variety. The students are looking forward to showcasing their hard work.”