Samuel Magrill: Serenade for Flute Choir
II.Counterpoint and Trio
Premiered at Oklahoma Flute Fair 2008.
The metaphor for this composition was a “serenade”---someone singing a love song below a beloved’s window, perhaps late at night, with the hope that the beloved might wake up, go to the window and listen to the musical declaration of love. The work was written as a labor of love for Natalie Syring and her Oklahoma Celebration Flute Choir. It also purports to be a love song from the composer to the audience with the flute choir as mediator. Although this composition is not intended as programmatic music, the working titles of the six movements are: I. Prelude, II. Counterpoint and Trio, III. Chords, IV. Ostinato, V. Song and VI. Dance.
Dr. Samuel Magrill is a Professor of Music and Composer-in-Residence at UCO where he has taught music theory and composition since 1988. Previously, he taught at the University of Wyoming and California State University, Long Beach. He obtained his BM in Composition from Oberlin Conservatory and MM and DMA in Composition from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. His composition teachers have included Ramiro Cortes, Joseph Wood, Randolph Coleman, Ben Johnston, Edwin London, Herbert Brün and Kenneth Gaburo.
Dr. Magrill has written more than one hundred compositions for a variety of instruments from solo piano and chamber music to choir, wind ensemble and symphony orchestra. His works have been performed throughout the U.S., abroad and many regional and national conferences. He has received numerous awards and commissions, including ones from the National Endowment for the Arts, the American Music Center, the Mid-America Arts Alliance, the Illinois Arts Council, ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers), the Oklahoma Music Teacher's Association, the American Composer's Forum's Continental Harmony Program and faculty research grants and merit credit awards from UCO. In the fall of 1997, Dr. Magrill was chosen as the Hauptman Fellow for the UCO College of Liberal Arts. In Spring 2000, he was inducted into SAI as an Arts Associate and won the AAUP-UCO Distinguished Creativity Award.
In May 1995, he performed his compositions at the Alternativa and Art Reality Festivals in Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia and lectured at the Theremin Center, a computer music studio at the Moscow Conservatory. In Summer 2001, he traveled to Australia, where his "Cello Rag Rag" for soprano and cello quartet and his "Double Concerto" for two cellos and chamber orchestra were premiered. His four one-act operas--"The Gorgon's Head," "Paradise of Children and the Gremlins Who Stole It," "Showdown on Two Street" and "Circe's Palace"--written from 1997-2000, were produced at UCO. In Summer 2004, the Oklahoma Youth Orchestra, conducted by Dr. John Clinton, performed his "Summer Song" on their European tour. In 2007, the Vivace Flute Quartet performed his "Tango Flauto" in Chile and Costa Rica. In Summer 2008, the UCO Concert Chorale, under the direction of Dr. Karl Nelson, performed his "Prayer for Peace" on their Italy tour. His CDs include a two-disc set of electro-acoustic music entitled "The Electric Collection," his four operas, collections of music for cello and other instruments, and “Oklahoma Bandscapes”—his works for Wind Symphony, performed by the UCO Wind Symphony under the direction of Dr. Brian Lamb.
His interest in world music led him to collaborate with M.V. Narasimhachari. Together, they produced two volumes of "The Music of India: An Introduction" (1996-2003). Dr. Magrill also collaborated with the Jayamangala School of Music and Dance to transcribe Carnatic music into western music notation. The result was a Music Score Book for "Music Transcends--An International Conference on Music" which took place May 8, 2004 in Greenbelt, MD. His work with Indian music came to fruition when he present his "East-West Duo" for violin, cello and mridangam in a concert of his music in Chennai, India on January 1, 2005.A member of Society of Composers, Inc. since 1984, Dr. Magrill has been Region VI Co-Chair from 1994-2000 and 2004-2007. He hosted a regional conference in 1993 and the national conference in 2004. Other memberships include: the American Music Center, ASCAP, Phi Kappa Phi and Pi Kappa Lambda.Dr. Magrill has been an active member of the College Music Society since 1983 and the UCO Representative since 1995. He has attended the regional CMS meetings annually for over twenty years with few exceptions. He hosted a regional conference in 1999 and served as President of the South Central Chapter from 1999-2003. From 2009-2011, he was board member in composition for the national organization.
Dr. Magrill is also an active pianist and accompanist, performing in faculty and student recitals at UCO and other schools in the region. Since 2007, he has worked closely with choral director, Dr. Karl Nelson, and has accompanied the UCO choral ensembles. He studied piano with Harlow Mills, Robert Turner, Dadi Mehta, John Perry, Ian Hobson and Dean Sanders and chamber music with Alice and Eleonore Schoenfeld. . He has been assisting with the Oklahoma Flute Society’s Annual Flute Fair since 2000 and has collaborated with Mira Magrill, Amy Zuback, Juliana Overmier, Natalie Syring, Emily Butterfield, Mary Karen Clardy, Katherine Kemler, Leon Buyse, Walfrid Kujala, Helen Blackburn, Amy Likar, Bonita Boyd, Terri Sundburg, Tadeu Coelho, Marianne Gedigian, Amy Porter, and Nicole Esposito, among others.