Minimalism is a movement in twentieth-century classical composition that arose in many ways as a reaction to the extremes of serialism in the 1950’s in America. With roots traced as far back as French composer Eric Satie, Minimalism today is a rich tradition drawing from many sources and has become popular in a wide range of applications, from film scores to orchestral concerts to solo performance to community music making. It offers an accessible harmonic language and is easy to listen to, but also offers some unique pianistic challenges perhaps not found in traditional classical repertoire. This presentation will give a broad overview of the minimalist genre with some ideas on how to teach it, and will include resources including a listening and repertoire list. It will also include a performance of portions of Hans Otte’s “The Book of Sounds” and other minimalist works drawn from a recital Dr. Wakeman will be performing in March of 2022
Dr. Forrest Wakeman is a performer, composer, producer, worship leader, and keyboard player based in the West Michigan area. He has played for over 20 Broadway national tours (including Wicked, Les Miserables, Waitress, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and Book of Mormon) and for the Grand Rapids, West Michigan, Battle Creek, and Holland Symphony orchestras. He is also an active recitalist and adjudicator.
He holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in piano performance from Michigan State University (studying with Deborah Moriarty) and a Master of Music degree from Western Michigan University in composition. He is currently Assistant Professor of Theory and Musicianship at Calvin University where he teaches courses composition, music theory, and music technology and serves as the director of keyboard studies. He also serves as music director at Magnify Church, a large multi-site church located just north of Grand Rapids. He lives in Grand Rapids with his family.
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