ST. BONAVENTURE, NY — The Martine Performing Arts Series at St. Bonaventure University continues on Sept. 27 with a 7 p.m. performance by the Dave Mancini Trio with Friends at the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts on campus.
Mancini is a Rochester-based composer and percussionist whose career reads like a Who’s Who of the music industry. He has toured and performed around the world with many of the premier artists in the business, including legendary trumpet player and former Tonight Show Band leader Doc Severinsen, Maynard Ferguson, Maureen McGovern, Rosemary Clooney and many others.
He has shared the bandstand with numerous jazz greats at New York City’s famous jazz nightclub, “Eddie Condon’s.”
\As a percussionist, he has performed with Chuck Mangione, Tony Bennett, Diahann Carroll and Johnny Mathis, and in the pit orchestra for a number of musical theater productions. He has also performed as a drum set/percussion artist with the majority of symphony orchestras in the United States and Canada, including the Boston Pops; Chicago, Dallas and Seattle symphonies; the National Symphony at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; and the Toronto Symphony.
He is also a composer, with numerous published compositions for solo percussion and percussion ensemble to his credit. It’s that part of his resume that served as the catalyst for this performance.
“Dave played on campus with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra Big Band the last two years,” said Dr. Leslie Sabina, director of the Department of Visual and Performing Arts at St. Bonaventure. “He happened to mention to me that he’s not only a percussionist and drummer, but a composer as well.”
Mancini accepted Sabina’s invitation to present to his SBU music composition class last semester.
“It was great,” said Sabina. “And then I thought how great it would be to hear his pieces as they are supposed to be played, with a live band and proper instrumentation.”
Mancini will be joined for the campus performance by his trio mates: Rebecca Gilbert, principal flutist for the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and a master class instructor across the U.S., and pianist Nick Weiser, director of jazz studies at the State University of New York at Fredonia. Weiser has performed around the world and gives lectures and master classes at universities and institutions nationwide.
Rounding out the ensemble will be violinist Tigran Vardanyan, a member of the Rochester Philharmonic who teaches at Nazareth College and SUNY Oswego; and Kieran Hanlon, assistant professor of double bass and jazz at SUNY Fredonia, principal bassist of the Erie Philharmonic, and substitute bassist with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra.
The group will perform several piece composed by Mancini as well as songs written by Claude Bolling, a French jazz pianist who was “enormously popular” in the 1980s, and a couple of South American-influenced pieces.
“Our program brings together the classical and jazz worlds,” said Mancini. “My original compositions are influenced by both jazz and classical music, with an influence of Latin American music as well.”
Sabina said the program will appeal to a wide audience. “It’s a very accessible program, particularly for anybody who enjoys nice melodies and harmonies,” he said.
Mancini, a graduate of the Eastman School of Music, is an artist/clinician for Yamaha Drums, Zildjian Cymbals, and Vic Firth drumsticks and mallets. He visits schools and universities throughout the U.S. and Canada as a guest soloist and workshop/master class instructor. He is also the author of “Drum Set Fundamentals,” as well as a number of articles on drum set techniques and careers in the music industry.
This performance is open to the public and is free for SBU students, faculty and staff. For all others, tickets are $5. For ticket information, call the Quick Center box office at (716) 375-2492.
The Martine Performing Arts Series, presented by St. Bonaventure’s Department of Visual and Performing Arts, is funded by a grant from the university’s James J. Martine Faculty Development Endowment.
Performances will continue through the 2017-18 academic year. Next up is the Rochester City Ballet, which will give a demonstration and mini-performance of dances from their “Bound for Brubeck” show at the Quick Center at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 4.