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University of Iowa News Release

Dec. 5, 2003

Percussionists Get Their Last Chance Dec. 14

The fall semester "Last Chance" concert of the University of Iowa Percussion Ensemble will begin at 8:02 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 14, making it once again the final student concert of the year at the UI School of Music. The performance, which will be free and open to the public, will be in Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus.

The UI Percussion Ensemble is directed by Dan Moore, professor of percussion at the UI School of Music. The group presents a "Last Chance" concert at the end of each semester, as one final opportunity for percussion students to perform the solos and ensemble pieces they have been studying. Traditionally the "Last Chance" concert is also the last performance of the semester in the School of Music.

Moore said the program, which usually falls in place at the last minute, has not been completely decided yet. "What I always say is, anything could happen," he said. "Come and see how it all turns out -- I might be as surprised as you are!"

One piece that has been settled, Moore said, is "The Path," a concerto for drum set and percussion ensemble by Steve Houghton, which will be performed by James Dreier, an adjunct professor in the jazz area of the UI School of Music.

Formed in 1958, the UI Percussion Ensemble has been performing on the UI campus and around the state of Iowa for more than 40 years. The group performs musical styles ranging from ragtime and jazz to 20th-century concert idioms and traditional musical styles from Africa, the Caribbean, Latin America and Asia.

With an extensive array of instruments -- from traditional drums, xylophones and cymbals to just about anything that can be struck, scraped, shaken or smashed together -- Percussion Ensemble performances are known for their variety and fast-paced programming, presented with humor, drama and old-fashioned showmanship.

An internationally known percussionist, composer and teacher, Moore has experience from concert to marching percussion, and from jazz to classical styles. Performing all aspects of percussion, including keyboard percussion, drum set, ethnic and multi-percussion, he is considered a "total percussionist."

Moore joined the UI music faculty in 1996. Only the second full-time professor of percussion at the UI, he succeeded Thomas L. Davis, who taught percussion at the UI for more than 35 years. He is a performing artist for the Yamaha Corporation of America, Sabian Ltd., and Innovative Percussion. He has written for Jazz Player, Sticks and Mallets and Percussive Notes magazines.

Dreier is an adjunct professor in the jazz studies area of the UI School of Music, as well as drumset and Latin percussion specialist at Augustana College in Davenport. At the UI he coaches small jazz groups, directs the Afro Cuban Drum Ensemble, assists with the large-format jazz bands, and teaches drumset and world percussion. As a member of the Orchesta de Alto Maiz he has performed throughout the Midwest and in Europe.

The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Peter Alexander, 319-384-0072,