Campus News

UB violist to take patrons around the world in her first UB faculty recital

Leanne Darling playing her viola in front of a series of glass doors

Leanne Darling is a classically trained violist with degrees from the Eastman School of Music and the Cleveland Institute of Music.

By PHILIP REHARD

Published April 13, 2018

UB violist and composer Leanne Darling will take patrons on a trip around the world in her first faculty recital on April 20.

The concert will take place at 7:30 p.m. in Baird Recital Hall, 250 Baird Hall, North Campus.

Darling will be joined by pianist Ivan Docenko, cellist and UB colleague Jonathan Golove, percussionist Liz Holland, guitarists Conn Sullivan and Thane Wilcox, and multi-instrumentalist Helen Yee, who will perform on the yangquin, for a program titled “Viola Around the World: A Musical Journey.”

Yee also will present an hour-long lecture-demonstration of the yangquin, or Chinese hammered dulcimer, at noon on April 18 in Baird Recital Hall. The session is free and open to the public.

Darling notes that as a solo or featured instrument, the repertoire choices for the viola are limited. “In western classical music, not counting the last 100 years, it has been overlooked as a solo instrument, and often violists have borrowed from like instruments, such as the cello or clarinet, to represent music from before the 20th century,” she says.

But in other cultures, viola-like instruments are prominent in many musical genres. “The bowed instruments like the Chinese erhu and the Egyptian rebab are much more in the viola register and trace their origins back hundreds — if not thousands — of years,” she says, adding that in the recital she aims “to showcase how versatile the viola is to adapting to these world music styles, whether taking on the sounds of the cello or the erhu, or playing a blues or a tango.”

“The repertoire in this recital,” she explains, “covers five continents and musical influences from numerous countries, beginning with European classical music, jumping far afield to Asia, back via the silk road to Egypt and the Middle East, bouncing across the ocean to America, and then down to South America for an Argentinean tango.”

An adjunct instructor of viola at UB and head teacher/mentor at Buffalo String Works, Darling is a classically trained violist with degrees from the Eastman School of Music and the Cleveland Institute of Music. She has served as assistant principal viola with the Florida West Coast Symphony and the Missouri Chamber Orchestra.

She founded the genre-breaking string trio Trio Tritticali, an eclectic rock/jazz/world group for whom she composes and arranges.

She has received two Meet the Composer grants and won the New York Innovative Theater Award for best original music in 2007.

Since moving to Buffalo, Darling has performed at Pausa Art House, the Elmwood Avenue Arts Festival, Hallwalls and the Music is Art Festival.

Tickets for the Darling recital are available through a variety of outlets at the following pricing structure:

UB faculty, staff, alumni, seniors and non-UB students

$10 plus $2 fee online at www.ticketfly.com

$10 plus $4 fee by phone at 877-987-6487 (Ticketfly)

$14 in person at the Center for the Arts (noon to 6 p.m., Tuesday through Friday)

$17 in person at the door (one hour before concert time)

General public

$15 plus $2 fee online at www.ticketfly.com

$15 plus $4 fee by phone at 877-987-6487 (Ticketfly)

$19 in person at the Center for the Arts (noon to 6 p.m., Tuesday through Friday)

$22 in person at the door (one hour before concert time)

UB students are admitted free with ID.

For a complete listing of all concerts being presented by the Department of Music, visit the department’s website.