Video Performance Feature:

"Fractalia" by Owen Clayton Condon
     Performed by Third Coast Percussion

Mallet Selection for this Piece:

Signature Vibraphone - Terry Gibbs
Medium vibe or marimba. Rattan handles.
L = 15 1/4"
  [enlarge photo]


About the piece:

Third Coast Percussion member Owen Clayton Condon writes music influenced by minimalism, electronica and taiko drumming. His newest piece, Fractalia, written for Third Coast Percussion in 2011, is a sonic celebration of fractals, geometric shapes whose parts are each a reduced-size copy of the whole (derived from the Latin fractus, meaning “broken”).

The kaleidoscopic fractured melodies within Fractalia are created by passing a repeated figure through four players in different registers of the marimba. Condon’s acoustic and electronic works, including Fractalia, have been featured as the soundtrack to video and light installations at Frank Lloyd Wright’s “Fallingwater” and Anish Kapoor’s “Cloud Gate,” the famous sculpture (affectionately referred to as “The Bean”) in Chicago’s Millennium Park.

If you enjoy this piece, check out Third Coast Percussion's latest project!

John Cage – The Works for Percussion 2

This album offers performances of works from John Cage’s early life with a “special fluency and zest that sets them apart” (Guardian). It was during this time that Cage met and studied with Arnold Schoenberg and Henry Cowell, worked with Lou Harrison, and found inspiration in Oskar Fischinger’s dictum that “everything in the world has a spirit that can be released through its sound.”

Throughout the recording process we worked closely with Cage’s manuscripts and personal correspondence, made available through the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, the Northwestern University Music Library, and the John Cage Trust’s founding trustee and Executive Director Laura Kuhn.

The album is available as an audio CD, and as a DVD with complete audio/visual of each work.

Buy it here!

About the composer:

Owen Clayton Condon made his solo debut in 1996 with the Louisville Symphony Orchestra after winning the orchestra's Young Artist Competition. In 2000, he won the New England Conservatory's Concerto Competition, and performed with the Conservatory's Symphony Orchestra in Jordan Hall.

Mr. Condon performs with the Millennium Chamber Players, and has performed with the Chicago Civic Orchestra; the University of Chicago's Contempo series; and has appeared as a guest artist with the Eighth Blackbird contemporary music group. Recently, he performed on behalf of Northwestern University at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. He studied with Frank Epstein and Will Hudgins at the New England Conservatory. 

He is completing his doctoral studies in music at Northwestern University, where he has studied with Michael Burritt and James Ross. He is currently the Director of Percussion Studies at Northeastern Illinois University.


About the performers:

Clay Condon, Robert Dillon, David Skidmore

and Peter Martin

Hailed by The New Yorker as “vibrant” and “superb,” Third Coast Percussion explores and expands the extraordinary sonic possibilities of the percussion repertoire, delivering vibrant performances for audiences of all kinds. Since its formation in 2005, Third Coast Percussion has gained national attention with concerts and recordings that meld the energy of rock music with the precision and nuance of classical chamber works.

These “savvy and hyper-talented young percussionists” (Musical Toronto) champion the awe-inspiring works of John Cage, Steve Reich, George Crumb, Arvo Pärt, Gérard Grisey, Philippe Manoury, Wolfgang Rihm, Louis Andriessen, Toru Takemitsu, and Tan Dun, among others. Third Coast has also commissioned and performed world premieres by today’s brightest up-and-coming composers, including David T. Little, Marcos Balter, Matthew Barnson, Ted Hearne, and ensemble members Owen Clayton Condon and David Skidmore. In 2012, the ensemble will premiere a major new work from acclaimed composer Augusta Read Thomas, scored for over 100 bells from around the world.

Third Coast’s recent and upcoming concerts and residencies include the University of Notre Dame’s DeBartolo Performing Arts Center, the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the Austin Chamber Music Festival, Millennium Park, the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage, and more. Third Coast has also introduced percussion music to audiences in Texas, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Illinois, securing invitations to return to many of these series.

In addition to its national performances, Third Coast Percussion’s hometown presence includes an annual Chicago series, with four to five concerts in locations around the city. The ensemble has collaborated in concert with acclaimed ensembles Eighth Blackbird, Signal, and the Garth Newel Piano Quartet, pianists Amy Briggs and Lisa Moore, cellists Nicholas Photinos and Tobias Werner, flautist Tim Munro, vocalist Ted Hearne, and video artists Luftwerk. Third Coast’s passion for community outreach includes a wide range of residency offerings while on tour, in addition to a long-term residency with the Davis Square Park Community Band on Chicago’s South Side.

The members of Third Coast Percussion —Owen Clayton Condon, Robert Dillon, Peter Martin, and David Skidmore—hold degrees in music performance from Northwestern University, the Yale School of Music, the New England Conservatory, and Rutgers University.