West Texas A&M University faculty showcase skills at annual recital

Photo taken by Rik Anderson.

Photo taken by Rik Anderson.

Hannah Nelson, Entertainment Editor

A lone piano sits center stage inside the Mary Moody Northern Recital Hall. A crowd begins to take their seats and the lights dim as the 34th annual Faculty Grand Recital begins.

The Faculty Grand Recital is an annual event presented by the West Texas A&M University School of Music. The event took place on Friday, January 26th showcasing many of the department faculty members as they perform.

“I did two movement of the Carmen sweep by Georges Bizet and obviously from the opera “Carmen,” Dr. Shanks said. “I did the Habanera and the Danse Boheme segments of it, normally played on flute, and technically difficult on flute, and so I played it on trombone.”

Accompanying Dr. Shanks during their duet performances was instructor Lyudmila Abbasova on piano.

“I like to stretch the possibilities of what you can do on the trombone and show that we can play more than just slow long notes,” Dr. Shanks said. “We shouldn’t constrain ourselves, we shouldn’t make limites for ourselves, we should see what we can do.”

The recital gave the faculty members a chance to perform some trios and duets. However, it also gave the faculty a time in their schedules to come together as people.

“We are so busy you know we dont get together very often, but there is a time when we practice that we talk also,” Instructor Lyudmila Abbasova said.

The Faculty Recital is a big night that allows the students and community to witness the department exhibit its talents . Even as a professional performer, Dr. Shanks still experiences a form of pre-show suspense occasionally.

“The science of performance anxiety is a wide ranging one. There wasn’t a thought of I can’t do this but there was only thoughts of this is very important and let’s go out there and give it my best,” Shanks said.

However, as Dr. Shanks begins to play his instrument and his piece progress the adrenaline begins to rush.

“To take that energy and channel it rather then let it eat you,” Dr. Shanks said.

On the day of the recital the department also hosted its Auditions Day. Having these events on the same day allowed the department to present its faculty to many potential income students who stuck around for the performances.

“It is nice to play for them to show them what we can do or what kind of wonderful school we have,” Abbasova said.

The event not only attracted the attention of potential WT students but current students as well. Freshman Music Education major Elizabeth Foster contributed the the event by setting up the reception following the recital with the Opera Buffa club. However, she still managed to find time to watch a few performances.

“I actually went into the recital hall to see Dr. Ramo perform her four pieces and she is amazing I love her,” Foster said.

Overall, the Faculty Grand Recital was a night of comradery, adoration, and entertainment. It was a night not just for community, and faculty, but for the students.

“It made me realize that even more that, wow, they are really good and I’m really lucky to be going here and learning from them,” Foster said.