By Annabelle Emuze
I’ve never had the opportunity to attend an event by a University of Illinois band until this evening.
The University of Illinois Steel Band and Percussion Ensemble is directed by Ricardo Flores. “Artist, performer, and educator – Percussionist Ricardo Flores has been electrifying audiences for years playing classical percussion, drum set, and world percussion in orchestral, chamber, jazz, pop Latin and many other musical settings.”
Flores directed the Band and Ensemble through nine musical performances: Everything’s Alright, Time after Time, Over the Rainbow, Jamaica Farewell, Jump in the Line, Steelin’ the Blues, Conscious Chutney, In the Groove of Things, and Birthday Party.
The director explained that the pieces such as ‘Time after Time’ were done in what is referred to as calypso style, where musicians take popular mainstream songs and turn them into musical renditions. I personally enjoyed hearing those instruments being used to play a song that was very old to me.
I find it very fascinating that our University gives students who are interested in music the opportunity to have such a vast platform such as The Krannert Center for the Performing Arts.