by Billy Clouse
Some students use their summer breaks for resting. Others use it to make money. Senior music major Jordan Nielsen, however, used his break to prepare a concert.
The months of practice came to a point on the night of September 12, where Nielsen performed “Mixed Courses” in Thorley Recital Hall.
“Musicians probably shouldn’t be taking the summer off because then you’ll go backwards instead of progress,” Nielsen said. “That was the academic goal, but the overall goal was to play with people. I had two really good players that were really good friends, and it’s fun to play with them.”
The concert featured the following six contemporary pieces:
Below is a clip of the second half of “Departures,” provided to Thunderground by Nielsen.
Nielsen said his favorite song was “Departures,” which he discovered during his freshman year at SUU. Over the summer and the first few weeks of school, he practiced the piece for almost 100 hours.
“It’s the one that I’ve been able to practice with the longest, so I felt much more comfortable on it,” he said. “It’s fun because there are so many emotions in it; it starts kind of sad and then it’s a feisty party at the end.”
Nielsen plans to have more “Mixed Courses” concerts throughout the year, but he has not announced a date for the next one.
To prevent the concert from being solely solo pieces, Nielsen reached out to his friends and colleagues.
“Every time I got together with Macy, Joe or Lydia, it was just a very fun rehearsal,” he said. “Sometimes, a rehearsal can be a very hard thing to get through, but those guys made it just really fun and it was all focused on enjoying music.I feel like it made our friendships stronger too.”