NSU Percussion Ensemble wins international competition

Percussion Ensemble members Lindsey Weatherford, front, and back row left to right, Adam Trupp, Andrew Boyd, Austin Pierre, and Steven Wimberley.

NATCHITOCHES – The Northwestern State University Percussion Ensemble won the Concert Chamber Percussion Ensemble Competition held at the Percussive Arts Society International Competition (PASIC) in Indianapolis.

The NSU ensemble is under the direction of Ken Green and Dr. Oliver Molina. They performed “Waiting to Exhale” (2019) by Peter Naughton and “Ojo” by Joe Moore.

“I am so proud of my students for their hard work and preparation for this competition at an international convention,” said Molina. “Their success brings attention to the music department, the School of Creative and Performing Arts and the entire NSU community and puts us on the map as a top percussion program.”

Ensemble members are Andrew Boyd and Adam Trupp of Frisco, Texas, Austin Pierre of Gray, Lindsey Weatherford of Tioga and Steven Wimberley of Pineville.

“Placing first at the chamber competition was such a surreal moment,” said Wimberley. “We were going up against so many amazing schools with great percussion programs. I think this achievement has definitely inspired us to keep pushing to see what else we can accomplish and to never settle for less.”

Wimberley said the preparation for the competition “was definitely a long and somewhat tedious process, but we all wanted to make our performance as great as possible.”

The Concert Chamber Competition began in 2014 and this is the first time NSU has competed at PASIC.

“Being a part of this ensemble was one of the most rewarding things to be a part of even if we had not won the competition,” said Pierre. “We all have a passion for music and being able to perform it to the best of our abilities for people is always a reward within itself. We had many tireless rehearsals where we would sometimes get quite frustrated with one another. However, we never lost sight of the actual prize of making great music, which is what we did in our performance.”

Since 1976, the Percussive Arts Society has delivered concerts and clinics from world-class musicians during its annual convention: PASIC. In addition to these performances, PASIC showcases the latest from the percussion industry at its International Drum and Percussion Expo. Over the years, PASIC has continued to be one of the largest events where the percussion family comes together to converse, perform, inspire and learn from one another.