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Acclaimed clarinetist visits Loyola to present masterclasses, concert

October 2, 2009

William O. Smith

Clarinet composer and performer William O. Smith will travel to Loyola University New Orleans to spend a week in residency Oct. 12–15. During this time, he will present workshops and masterclasses and a give a concert featuring his own works. All events are free and open to the public.

A clarinet masterclass on his composition, “Five Pieces for Clarinet,” will take place Tuesday, Oct. 13, at 7:30 p.m., in Communications/Music Complex, Room 240. Representatives of the leading clarinet manufacturers will be on hand during this time to display their latest clarinets.

Smith will perform a concert, “Compositions and Improvisations,” on Thursday, Oct. 15, at 8 p.m., in Roussel Hall, featuring his own classical and jazz compositions.

Born in Sacramento, Calif., Smith studied at the Juilliard School of Music, Mills College, the Paris Conservatory and the University of California, Berkley. His principal composition teachers were Darius Milhaud and Roger Sessions. He has received many awards and honors including the Prix de Paris, the Prix de Rome for the American Academy in Rome, two Guggenheim fellowships and grants from the National Endowment of the Arts and the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

He has recorded albums with music greats such as Enrico Pieranunzi, Bob Brookmeyer, Shelley Manne, Barney Kessel, Jim Hall and Eric Dolphy, among others. A pioneer in the development of new clarinet sonorities, he is also a frequent jazz performer with the Dave Brubeck Quartet.

Smith was a professor of music at the University of Washington where he taught composition and co-directed the Contemporary Group until he retired in 1997 and was awarded the title professor emeritus.

These programs are sponsored by the Loyola Center for Music and Arts Entrepreneurship. For more information, contact John Reeks at reeks@loyno.edu or 504-259-0604.

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