News Releases

Ithaca College Concert to Offer New Ways of Hearing Pop Hits

 ITHACA, NY — A total of 10 faculty and student performers from the Ithaca College School of Music will present a free concert on Friday, Jan. 27, that will feature improvised new arrangements based on Billboard’s top hits of 2011. The concert will begin 4:30 p.m. in the Hockett Family Recital Hall in the James J. Whalen Center for Music.

“With this concert we hope to draw a new audience into the thrilling, high-wire act of spontaneous collaboration through improvisation,” said Nicholas Walker, associate professor of music performance. “By using material we all hear in shopping malls, on television, over the radio and at the gym as the basis for our arrangements, we hope the creative process will be more transparent to those who may not be familiar with jazz, bluegrass, gospel, Afro-Cuban and other improvised forms of music.”

Among the pop favorites providing the sources of the improvisation will be “Such Great Heights” by Postal Service, “Firework” by Katy Perry, “Every Teardrop Is a Waterfall” by Coldplay, “Pumped Up Kicks” by Foster the People and “Rolling in the Deep” by Adele.

“This is new material for all of us, so we all have stepped outside our comfort zone as we have worked to put this program together,” Walker said. “The faculty and students involved in this program bring a huge range of skills and an absorbing energy.”
For more information, contact Molly O’Shea Polk, marketing communications manager in the School of Music, at or (607) 274-3370.