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Music Faculty/Alumnus Pens Incidental Music for Debut Theater Performance

death of a salesmanBrian Buckley, Adjunct Professor of composition at the Mary Pappert School of Music was commissioned to compose incidental music for the Genesius Theater's inaugural performance of Death of a Salesman.

Death of a Salesman opened on Oct. 1, 2015 and ran through Oct. 18, 2015. Each performance included 23 sound cues, adding up to approximately 35 minutes of music, all composed by Buckley.

All of the music was recorded and performed by a group of current students and alumni of the School of Music. Members included:

Performers:
Brian Buckley, accordion/composer (B.M. Technology, 2007; Adjunct Professor, Composition)
Allison Mora, flute (B.M. Performance/Certificate in Business Management, 2015)
Melanie Bickert, baritone saxophone (B.S. Music Education, current student)
Rasa Mahmoudian, violin, (B.M. Performance, current student)
Robert Kaufman, cello (B.M. Performance, current student)

Recording Engineers:
Daniel Kerrigan (B.M. Technology, current student)
Richard Grillone (B.M. Technology, current student)

Working with the staff and crew of the Genesius Theater was very special for Buckley. Having worked with many of them on and off over the years, they seemed especially vibrant and enthusiastic to him with this production.

John Lane, Director of Theater Arts and Executive Director of the Duquesne University Red Masquers is very happy with the production as a whole, saying, "Brian Buckley's new score for the inaugural production of the Genesius Theater was perfect. Brian developed a theme for each of the main characters. These themes captured the mood, intensity, and tone of not only each character, but each character in successive scenes. The themes modulated throughout the play, following the arches of the characters each represented. The tech theater students (and myself) who were present at the recording session, openly wept at not only the beauty of Brian's compositions, but the virtuosity of the student musicians. His score was a triumph."

Speaking about his experience, Buckley adds, "Not enough can be said to compliment the music school students who contributed to this project. There were no rehearsals; all the music was sight-read at the recording session. We had only a two-hour session to record all of the cues, the tracks were mixed overnight, and the very next day they were being used in rehearsal. Each musician and engineer understood their specific role in making this daunting challenge efficient and of a high caliber. It was their professionalism and dedication that allowed the music in this show to be a success. Watching undergrads, a graduate student, and an alumna put into practice their individually unique skills and training to achieve a common goal is always inspiring for a teacher."

Duquesne University

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