Lancaster – An evening of visual and performing arts is planned on the Ohio University Lancaster Campus January 24. A former O.U. visiting percussion professor is bringing his musical talents to the theatre stage on the same evening that a Lancaster artist is opening her exhibit in the art gallery.
First, the opening reception of "Fowl Weather" by Lancaster Artist Lisa Schorr will be held from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. in the Raymond S. Wilkes Gallery for the Visual Arts.
"We have amazing artistic talent in Lancaster and Fairfield County and Lisa Schorr is a perfect example," said Ohio University Lancaster Campus Development Director Mandi Custer. "Come and enjoy her easy-going style that lights up a room and puts a smile on your face."
Then, after the reception, Percussionist Joseph Van Hassel will perform on the Wagner Theatre stage. The performance will consist of music for solo percussion instruments. Van Hassel will be performing pieces that were written for him using vibraphone, snare drum with electronic accompaniment, orchestra bells with spoken text and bass drum.
"I think it's a kind of a unique mixture of different percussion instruments," said Van Hassel. "I think people should come because they'll get to hear percussion instruments played in a solo capacity that they may not have heard in that way.People have heard percussion before as part of a rock band or something, but this is an opportunity to hear the instruments individually."
The music is a mix of modern sounding pieces and music that is more immediately accessible. Van Hassel will be performing on some percussion instruments traditionally associated with Non-Western cultures, including Middle Eastern and African instruments. All of the music features the contrasting sounds of different, unique percussion instruments. It's also visually exciting, as percussion is by its nature, a very theatrical instrument.
"I would like people to come with an open mind and hear some different instruments, said Van Hassel. "The spoken word element of the show makes it a really unique performance."
Van Hassel is teaching Intro to Music Theory and Intro to World Music at Ohio University Lancaster spring semester. He will talk about each piece and give an introduction that will serve to explain some of the concepts that occur in a portion of the works. The show will start at 6:30 and is free and open to the public.