JAZZ/BLUES

Top International talent at national percussion day in may

Monday 7 April 2008, 7:49PM
By Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra
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AUCKLAND

 US-based vibraphonist and composer Stefon Harris who has been hailed by the Los Angeles Times as “one of the most important young artists in jazz” will be the special guest at this year’s National Percussion Day on Friday 9th May.

 National Percussion Day is run by the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and is open to percussionists and percussion enthusiasts from around the country of all ages. It will be held on Friday 9th May from 10am to 10pm at the Raye Freedman Arts Centre in Epsom, Auckland. The cost of the day is just $45 which includes meals. Registration is open now. Registration forms are available online at www.apo.co.nz  in the Education section.

 Stefon Harris has released numerous critically acclaimed CDs on the esteemed Blue Note record label and received multiple Grammy Award nominations. He is a graduate of The Manhattan School of Music were he gained a BA in classical music and MA in jazz performance. He is the recipient of numerous awards including the prestigious Martin E. Segal Award from the Lincoln Center and was voted Best Mallet Player by the Jazz Journalists’ Association for four consecutive years (2000-2003).

 Stefon is one of a varied and widely experienced group of percussionists and drummers including Frank Gibson Jnr, Luke Casey, Fraser Bruce and Ron Samson who will present workshops on the day covering a wide range of topics and genres.

 “Although run by the APO, National Percussion Day covers a wide range of percussion and drumming genres,” says APO Education Manager, Lee Farley. “Workshops include drum maintenance, rock drumming, jazz, African drums and marimbas, making your own percussion instruments, a Samba workshop as well as orchestral percussion. The day is very hands-on with multiple opportunities for participants to perform. It’s a day for drummers and percussionists to come together to learn, be inspired and extend their skills. And it’s a whole lot of fun!”

 National Percussion Day will culminate in a performance by Stefon followed by a cross-genre percussion jam.