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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    UA student writes piece for Tucson Symphony Orchestra

    Robert Hanshaw, a vocal performance freshman, will debut his piece tonight at the Celebrate the Future Tucson Symphony Orchestra concert. The piece, which he wrote in high school, is based off a haiku written by his friend Joanna Kyl.
    Robert Hanshaw, a vocal performance freshman, will debut his piece tonight at the ‘Celebrate the Future’ Tucson Symphony Orchestra concert. The piece, which he wrote in high school, is based off a haiku written by his friend Joanna Kyl.

    The Tucson Symphony Orchestra will perform a piece tonight written by UA freshman Robert Hanshaw at their “”Celebrate the Future”” concert.

    Hanshaw, who is studying vocal performance, participated in the orchestra’s 2005 Young Composers Project while he was still in high school, and the orchestra chose his piece to perform. He started by writing a few smaller pieces, but his main work, titled “”And Your Name Is Light,”” is based on a haiku written by his friend Joanna Kyl: “”From rosy-cheeked cells / has sprung the outline of truth / and your name is light.”” The two began working together in high school, with Kyl writing poetry and prose, and Hanshaw writing music.

    Hanshaw is also part of the UA Symphonic Choir and the vocal group Modus Novus. “”It’s nice to work with such a small group of people for a long time,”” he said. Hanshaw has been writing rock and jazz compositions for six years and “”serious compositions”” for about three years, which he says is a much bigger challenge. “”There’s a lot more to keep in mind,”” he said.

    In addition to “”And Your Name Is Light,”” Hanshaw recently finished a classical guitar piece with Mark Wilson, a guitar performance major, which will be performed April 16.

    Leading the concert is guest conductor Robert Bernhardt, the music director for the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera in Tennessee and principal pops conductor for the Louisville Orchestra in Kentucky. He also served as the musical director for the Tucson Symphony Orchestra from 1987 to 1996. “”I’m lucky enough to be asked back from time to time,”” Bernhardt said.

    Though he has only heard Hanshaw’s piece once in rehearsal so far, he is already excited. “”It’s wonderfully put together and indicated the composer has talent,”” he said. “”It’s wonderful to do pieces by young composers.””

    The “”Celebrate the Future”” concert will be held tonight at 7 at the Tucson Music Hall. Tickets are $15 for adults, $8 for children and $30 for a family of four.

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