Music dept. to host students for annual fest

Carlena Bressanelli, Staff writer

This upcoming weekend, you will not want to miss the Tri-State Festival in the Performing Arts Center.

This annual event is hosted by the D’Angelo Department of Music.

They invite high school musicians from Western Pennsylvania, Eastern Ohio and Western New York for this festival.

Music Department Chair Nathan Hess, D.M.A., said that this event “was started in the early 2000s and has continued every year.”

“It was started because we desired to have a weekend band festival, inviting talented high school students to stay overnight, who would be possible recruits to enroll in our degree programs,” Hess said.

Music Department professor Scott Meier, PhD, has been in charge of this event for about 15 years.

It is an annual event that takes place every year at the beginning of the spring semester.

Hess said that the festival begins on Jan. 30, when the high school students will begin rehearsals at Mercyhurst.

They stay overnight in a hotel.

The rehearsals resume on Jan. 31, and continue for most of the day.

That night, Mercyhurst’s Wind Ensemble and Jazz Ensemble perform in the Prism Concert under the direction of Meier.

The two Mercyhurst student soloists who will be featured this year are junior flautist Morgan Dowches and freshman trumpeter Kirk Morrison, both Music Education majors.

On Feb. 1, the high school students will present a concert in the Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center, showcasing the work they have done in rehearsals over the past two days.

This concert, called the Honor Concert, will also be directed by Meier.

The 2020 Tri-State Festival officially ends after the conclusion of this concert.

Both concerts are free and open to the public.

The Prism concert begins at 8 p.m. on Jan. 31 and the Honor Band concert begins at 2 p.m. on Feb. 1.