SUU’s Percussion Ensemble Shines Light in the Darkness (Nov 23)

Published: November 10, 2020 | Author: Ashley H Pollock | Read Time: 3 minutes

SUU Percussion Ensemble with dance students, 2020Light, joy, music, and drums will bring rhythm to SUU’s online stage. On November 23, 2020 at 7:30 p.m., the SUU Department of Music will share a performance called The Light Around Us by the Percussion Ensemble, directed by Dr. Lynn Vartan. The performance can be viewed at  

Dr. Lynn Vartan, Associate Professor of Percussion, says, “Pieces explore the joy and light we can find in these challenging times, including pieces like Blurred by Bill Ryan and Dreams by David Molk. In addition we will play Cabasa! by Mark Ford which is certain to be fun for the crowd with hand held cabasas! We will also be showing the collaboration between percussion and dance this Fall called Embers & Ash that was part of the Fall 2020 Dance Concert.”

The SUU Percussion Ensemble consists of both music majors and non-majors and welcomes students with a variety of levels of experience. This ensemble performs historically significant works for percussion, contemporary percussion literature, novelty percussion and traditional non-western percussion music.

Emily Sexton, a Music Performance major with an Instrumental Performance Emphasis from Arizona, shares, “Rehearsing during the COVID-19 pandemic has been difficult for all of us in performing arts, but we have managed to safely rehearse and perform pieces and continue to keep the arts alive during this difficult time. In percussion ensemble, we often play pieces that require multi-percussion setups or large mallet instruments for each person, so we just spaced out our individual setups and utilized the space of the room. We are also able to wear our masks for the entire rehearsal, since we don't need to use our mouths for our instruments. The pandemic has been a hard time for everyone, especially those of us in the performing arts, but despite the restrictions and challenges we have had to face in our specific area, we are still making sure that the arts stay alive. It means so much to us that people attend our performances, whether it be virtually or in person, because we have been able to keep going and have been working so hard on these pieces.”

Discover the joy and light that can be found even in the most difficult trials of your life through the SUU Percussion Ensemble concert on Monday, November 23, 2020. For more information about the Department of Music at SUU, please visit

About the College of Performing and Visual Arts

The College of Performing and Visual Arts (CPVA) at Southern Utah University comprises 26 academic programs including liberal arts (BA/BS) and professional (BFA, BM, BMEd) degrees in art, design, dance, music and theatre. It includes graduate programs in the fields of arts administration (MFA, MA), music education (MME), and music technology (MM). More than 60 full-time faculty and staff are engaged in teaching and mentoring nearly 800 majors in the College. CPVA presents over 100 performances, lectures, presentations, and exhibitions each year and is affiliated with the Southern Utah Museum of Art (SUMA), Utah Shakespeare Festival, and the Center for Shakespeare Studies. Southern Utah University is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD), National Association of Schools of Dance (NASD), and the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM). For more information about the College of Performing and Visual Arts, visit

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