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University of Iowa News Release


April 4, 2007

Workshops For Young Bass Players Will Lead To Public Concert April 21

Paul Sharpe, an alumnus of the University of Iowa School of Music, will return to campus to teach in a workshop for young double bass players and give a concert at 7 p.m. Saturday, April 21 in Harper Hall of the University of Iowa Voxman Music Building.

Sharpe is artist-performer and teacher of double bass at Texas Tech University. His concert will be free and open to the public.

April 21 will be the fourth annual Bass Day organized by Volkan Orhon, professor of double bass at the UI School of Music. The one-day workshop is geared toward elementary through high school students. With separate sessions for grades 4-7 and 8-12, material will be presented that is appropriate for the ages and skills of all participants.

"The workshop presents student-friendly information about double bass performance issues such as audition preparation and fingering and bowing techniques, as well as solo and orchestral master classes," Orhon said. "We also will form bass ensembles in the afternoon for the chamber music concert featuring students and faculty."

Orhon said that the program for the concert would not be known until the participants show up and start working together. "We usually find out what we are playing the day of the event," he said.

Sharpe received a bachelor's degree from Northwestern University and a master's degree from the UI, where he studied with Diana Gannett. He maintains an active career as a soloist, chamber and orchestral double bassist. He has been a prizewinner at several solo competitions, including the International Society of Bassists Solo Competition in 1997, and he was the winner of the Aspen Music Festival's Double Bass Concerto Competition in 1996.

Sharpe is currently principal bass of the Lubbock Symphony Orchestra. As a teacher of double bass he has held faculty positions at the University of North Texas, Augustana College in Rock Island and the Preucil School of Music in Iowa City. For more information, see:

Orhon joined the UI faculty in the fall of 2002. His professional career spans a wide variety of solo, orchestral and chamber music performing and teaching across the country and around the world. Among other honors, he was the first double bass player ever to win the Grand Prize overall and first prize for double bass at the American String Teachers Association Solo Competition. For more, see or

The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at

For UI arts information and calendar updates, visit To receive UI arts news by e-mail, go to, click the link "Join or leave the list (or change settings)" and follow the instructions.

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; cell: 319-541-2846;