Under the direction of Grant Cooper, Artistic Director and Conductor, the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra will perform at Fairmont State University at 7:30 pm Thursday, Oct. 17, at Colebank Hall.
Containing works by Claude Debussy, Stephen Paulus, Aaron Copland and Grant Cooper, the program will feature two trumpet soloists, Vincent DiMartino and Rex Richardson. The program will include Debussy’s “Prelude to Afternoon of a Faun” and Copland’s “Appalachian Spring.”
Tickets are $30 for reserved seating, $20 for general admission, $10 for students and free for Fairmont State students. To order tickets, call (304) 367-4240. Parking for the event will be available on the top deck of the campus parking garage. FSU is committed to making performances and facilities accessible to all patrons. Large print programs and other accommodations are available.
For more information about events of the FSU School of Fine Arts, visit https://www.facebook.com/FSUfinearts.
Grant Cooper, Artistic Director and Conductor of the WVSO, officially began his duties as the ninth conductor in the WVSO’s history on July 1, 2001. From 1997-2007, Cooper served as Resident Conductor of the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, where he gave almost 600 performances with that orchestra, appearing to critical acclaim on all the major series. Cooper is also Artistic Director of a summer festival, the Bach and Beyond Festival in Fredonia, N.Y. In the spring of 2012, Cooper was honored by Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin as the recipient of a Governor’s Award for Distinguished Service in the Arts.
The West Virginia Symphony Orchestra is West Virginia’s premier performing arts organization, presenting more than 50 concerts annually to audiences throughout the Mountain State. Programs include Symphonic, ZMM Pops and City National Bank Family Concert Series, performances by the Montclaire String Quartet, collaborations with the Charleston Ballet and other state arts organizations and a national award-winning education program. The Symphony’s home is the world-class Maier Foundation Performance Hall at the Clay Center for the Arts and Sciences in Charleston.
Vincent DiMartino, trumpet
Vincent DiMartino retired in 2012 as Matton Professor of Music Emeritus at Centre College. One of America's leading trumpet performers and teachers, DiMartino originally joined the college in 1993 as Centre's first distinguished artist-in-residence. He was named to the Matton Professorship in 1996.
Throughout his teaching career, DiMartino has been a member of the artist faculty of many international seminars and courses. These include The Empire Brass Quintet-Tanglewood summer program, The Spanish Brass Festival in Alzira-Spain, The Kalavrita Brass Course in Greece, as well as seminars in England, Ukraine, Thailand, Germany and Canada.
He is 2004 CASE Professor of the Year for the state of Kentucky. The award is given nationally each year to one person in each state in The United States. He is also the recipient of The Governor’s Lifetime Achievement Award for 2008-2009 for the State of Kentucky.
DiMartino has performed worldwide as a soloist and with artists such as Henry Mancini, Doc Severinsen, Pearl Bailey, Dizzy Gillespie and Dave Brubeck. Widely admired for classical and jazz playing, he has also in recent years begun to specialize in virtuoso cornet solos.
DiMartino, along with George Foreman, founded the New Columbian Brass Band. DiMartino also is a soloist with the New Sousa Band and is a featured soloist with the Advocate Brass Band. DiMartino is a popular performer at the Great American Brass Band Festival, which annually draws 40,000 people to Danville for outstanding brass music.
A graduate of the Eastman School of Music (B.M. and M.M. degrees), DiMartino was the Alumni Distinguished Professor of Trumpet at the University of Kentucky for some 20 years. He has performed as a soloist with many symphony orchestras, including those in Cincinnati, Buffalo, Santa Fe, Orlando and Rochester. He is prominently featured in many recordings of the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra.
Rex Richardson, trumpet
Hailed as “An artiste with an exceptional talent …one of the finest trumpet players in the world today,” (4barsrest.com) and “one of the world’s most engaging and astonishingly versatile trumpeters,” (Style Weekly) Yamaha Performing Artist Rex Richardson was named the 2008 Brass Herald Personality of the Year. A veteran of the renowned chamber ensemble Rhythm & Brass, jazz legend Joe Henderson’s Quintet, the Chicago Jazz Ensemble, the Brass Band of Battle Creek, he stays busy as a headline artist at international festivals and as a soloist with orchestras, jazz ensembles, brass bands and concert bands on five continents.
As a professional trumpeter, Richardson has shared the stage with countless legendary artists and ensembles, including Brian Blade, Benny Carter, Boston Brass, Ray Charles, Mike Clarke, Kurt Elling, Carl Fontana, Aretha Franklin, Wycliffe Gordon, Stefon Harris, Conrad Herwig, Dave Holland, Dave Liebman, Keith Lockhart, Jimmy Owens, Chris Potter, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Allen Vizzutti, Bill Wautrous and Steve Wilson.
Having developed a unique reputation in the trumpet world for his combination of singular virtuosity, a highly personal style and an emphasis on improvisation in classical as well as jazz idioms, Richardson has become renowned as a champion of new music. He presented the premiere performances of concertos by Dana Wilson, Doug Richards and Peter Meechan on four continents between 2006 and 2010. Since then he presented the Australian, Brazilian, Swedish, English, Scottish, Thailand and U.S. premieres of James Stephenson’s Trumpet Concerto no. 2, “Rextreme.”
His five solo recordings, including the 2010 release “Magnum Opus: 21st Century Trumpet Concertos” are all released on Summit Records. Referring to “Magnum Opus,” the International Trumpet Guild Journal printed “This album, without a doubt, puts Richardson among the very best trumpet soloists in the world today” (January 2011).
Richardson has taught at Virginia Commonwealth University since 2002 and served as artist-in-residence or visiting professor at Ithaca College and London’s Trinity College of Music. He served as Artist-in-Residence for the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, England, in the spring of 2012.
In 2009 he was presented with the VCU School of the Arts highest honor, the Award of Excellence, and he has been awarded the 2011 Theresa Pollack Prize for Excellence in the Arts. The Pollack Prize selectors wrote: “Richardson stands at the vanguard of jazz, classical and contemporary American music. He is an extraordinary musician.”