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UAlbany’s Festival of Contemporary Music

ALBANY, N.Y. (March 10, 2016) -- UAlbany’s recent annual Festival of Contemporary Music at the PAC featured the University Percussion Ensemble and the Youth Percussion Ensembles. As part of the program, UAlbany’s Department of Music and Theatre hosted young composer Brandon Zhou, a senior at Bethlehem Central High School.

President Jones, who attended the concert, addressed the ensemble members before the show and wished them luck. The ensuing concert featured a premiere performance of “Mutagenesis” written by Zhou for nine percussion players and performed by the Empire State Youth Percussion Ensemble.

UAlbany’s Festival of Contemporary Music
UAlbany’s Percussion Ensemble group along with its director, Richard Albagli, meets with President Jones prior to the performance. (Photo by Mark Schmidt)

The Youth Ensemble also performed the John Beck Concerto for Drum Set and Percussion Ensemble featuring Jim Stagnitti, a senior at Niskayuna High School. The Youth Ensemble was joined by the two Repertory Percussion Ensembles, also part of the Youth Orchestra’s vast program, and led by ensemble directors Richard Albagli, John Antonio, Mark Foster and Genoviffa Vitale.

The University Percussion Ensemble from the University at Albany led by Albagli, included UAlbany students Michael Larosa, Josue Morgado, Sophie Uwechue, Cassidy Kurz and Emanuel Lubitz.

To learn more about the Department of Music and Theatre, visit

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