Oklahoma City University News
Steffens, Burrow Tour Contemporary Percussion, Clarinet Music
Dr. David Steffens and Professor Chad Burrow continue to tour campuses with their program of contemporary clarinet and percussion music. Both are members of the faculty at the Bass School of Music at Oklahoma City University, and principal instrumentalists for the Oklahoma City Philharmonic. Most recently, the duo was invited to a two-day artist residency at the Crane School of Music at the State University of New York at Potsdam.
In New York, Steffens and Burrow gave masterclasses and individual lessons and presented a recital “Music of the 20th Century for Clarinet and Percussion.” The duo performed “Corker for Clarinet and Percussion” by Libby Larsen, “Sequenza IXa for Solo Clarinet” by Luciano Berio, “Mourning Dove Sonnet for Solo Vibraphone” by Christopher Deane, and “Cadenzas for Clarinet and Percussion” by Alexina Louie. Also on the program: “Raven for Clarinet and Marimba,” written for Steffens and Burrow by Edward Knight, OCU’s composer in residence. The Feb. 9 concert was held at the Crane Schools’ Sara M. Snell Music Theater.
In addition to his work with the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Burrow has been featured soloist with professional and student ensembles throughout the world, including the Taichung Philharmonic, Tulsa Philharmonic, New Haven Mozart Players, Shin Sharn Chamber Ensemble, Ft. Smith Symphony Orchestra, Lawton Philharmonic Orchestra, Northwestern University Symphony Orchestra, and Yale Philharmonia Orchestra. His repertoire includes concerti by Copland, Crusell, Debussy, Francaix, Hartmann, Mozart, Nielsen, Rossini, Spohr, Stamitz, and Weber.
Burrow is the clarinetist for Duo Clarion, formed in 1999 at Yale University with pianist Amy Cheng. Duo Clarion maintains an active series of performances throughout the United States, Europe and the Far East. Their work has been recorded and released by Albany Records and by Wei Studios. Together, Chen and Burrow serve as co-artistic directors for the Oklahoma City-based Brightmusic Chamber Ensemble and its annual series of six programs.
Burrow’s prizes and awards include the 2001 Young Concert Artist International Competition, the 2000 Woolsey Hall Competition, the 2000 Artist International Competition, and the 1997 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. He is principal clarinet of the Quartz Mountain Music Festival, clarinetist for Camerata Pangaea, instructor at the Alpen Kammermusik Festival and artist/clinician for Buffet Crampon, USA. He was the only American clarinetist invited to participate in the 2003 Munich Competition. He is a former principal clarinetist of the New Haven Symphony and is now an associate professor of clarinet at OCU’s Bass School of Music.
Burrow has given master classes and lectures throughout Taiwan and at the San Francisco School of the Arts, University of Western Ontario, and, Louisiana State University. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Northwestern University and a Master of Music degree from Yale University.
Steffens is a recording artist, clinician, educator and champion of new music, who has directed the percussion program at the Bass School since 1997. As a founding member of the Robert Hohner Percussion Ensemble, he is featured on four internationally released CDs on the DMP recording label: “Different Strokes,” “The Gamut,” “The World Music Tour” and “Lift-Off.” He is also on Albany Records’ “The Percussion Music of David Maslanka.”
In 2005, Steffens recorded “Lost Luggage,” a five-movement work for solo marimba he commissioned from composer Edward Knight, for the CD “Where The Sunsets Bleed,” also released by Albany. Steffens has performed with the Midland Symphony, West Shore Symphony Orchestra, Greater Lansing Symphony, Lawton Philharmonic Orchestra and Schlossfestspiele in Heidelberg, Germany. He is a frequent guest artist and has presented master classes and percussion clinics on campuses nationwide.
Under Steffens’ leadership, Oklahoma City University’s Percussion Ensemble has performed works ranging from a Red Norvo tribute in Austin to a regional premiere of Stravinsky’s “Les Noces” to a Maslanka work at the national SCI convention. He received his Performer’s Certificate and his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Eastman School of Music.
He has taught at Michigan State, Central Michigan University and the Eastman School of Music. Steffens is past president of the Oklahoma Chapter of the Percussive Arts Society. He is an artist/clinician for Black Swamp Percussion, Bosphorus Cymbals and Encore Mallets.