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Celebration of Scholarship and Creative Activity 2021

Aiden Trinkner Solo Percussion Performance

Aiden Trinkner

Senior, Music Instrumental Performance, Music Industry (Audio Recording and Music Business)


I am presenting for listeners three pieces of solo percussion works, including pieces for timpani, vibraphone, and multiple percussion. These three pieces showcase the rhythmic, melodic, and structural aspects of contemporary solo percussion repertoire. Over the course of the past year, I have been carefully preparing all of these pieces for use in my upcoming senior recital. Each of these works present different and interesting challenges to both myself as a performer as well as listeners. They emphasize the importance of rhythmic integrity within solo music as well as bring out the importance and possibility of melodic movement within a more traditionally rhythm-oriented instrument class such as percussion.

Project Background

For the presentation at COSCA, I have prepared three works of solo percussion repertoire that are also to be presented at my senior recital in May of 2021. I will go a bit into detail into each of the three pieces, including why I chose them and what makes them the pieces that I chose to showcase.
First up we have a piece titled March for solo timpani by Elliott Carter. This is a very rhythmically intricate piece that balances the marchlike feel between the left hand of the player with the more melodic/soloistic feel found in the right hand. While maintaining a steady sense of pulse, this piece proves to be challenging to balance the melodic lines not normally found in traditional timpani repertoire, and it includes logistical challenges as well, including having multiple time changes and required flipping of sticks to play with different ends of the mallets between the four drums. This piece has been a challenge since I began preparations for it, but it has also been one of my favorite pieces to learn and it has brought me into a new mindset when it comes to solo timpani music.
Secondly in the video you will hear a piece titled Suomineito by Nebojša Jovan Živković. This is a solo vibraphone piece that is based on a Finnish folk song called “”Heili Karjalasta”. The original folk song is in a very fast tempo with a much more upbeat and happy feel to it, almost like a Finnish polka; seemingly nothing like the vibraphone adaptation by Živković. This piece is very quiet and melancholic, with many choices being left up to the performer. I’ve always enjoyed more contemporary vibraphone pieces, especially expressive ones. This piece really spoke to me when I first listened to it, and I strove to make it as expressive and interesting as possible to really tug at the heartstrings of listeners.
In severe contrast to the vibraphone piece, the final piece of music in my video is titled 13 Drums by Maki Ishii. As the title suggests, this piece utilizes a total of thirteen drums for use in a multiple percussion setup, with twelve drums played by the performers hands and one bass drum on the floor played with a foot pedal. This piece is easily the most difficult multiple percussion piece I have ever attempted, but I wouldn’t change anything about my process with it. This piece pushes the boundaries of rhythmic integrity and what it means to be “in time” when it comes to some of the complex runs that happen throughout the piece. Not only is this piece incredibly rhythmically complex, but it also does well to show how melodic tuned drums can be when put in a group such as this. Ishii notates the drums on the music as though they were a melodic instrument such as piano, and with this technique he creates beautiful running lines and dramatic lyrical passages played on drums that would otherwise only be capable of one note at a time. This piece is also physically demanding and a pretty significant workout to play. Needless to say this piece has whipped me into shape over the past year and forced my hands to move faster than I thought was possible in some sections.
I hope you enjoy reading a bit of my thoughts about each piece of music presented, and I sincerely thank you for listening.


What Do You Think? 

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  1. Meg Olson

    This was a privilege to watch! Great job!

  2. Morgan DiPietro

    Great job Aiden!! and good luck on your recital! :^)

  3. Abby Shreve

    Brava Aiden!! Can’t wait for your recital! 🙂

  4. Debbie Gray Patton

    Aiden, thank you for sharing your amazing talent! It was wonderful!

  5. Noah Eckstein

    WOW. Great job! It is always fun to hear pieces grow and develop. I cannot wait to hear this music LIVE this weekend!

  6. Alison Shaw

    Great job on everything. I can’t wait to hear your senior recital on Sunday!!!

  7. Molly Hennig

    Amazing job, Aiden! Twenty minutes of pure skill and expertise.

  8. Jack P


  9. Samuel

    Amazing performance. Is it ok if I sample this performance?


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