Concert By Popular Oboist Dan Willett

Dan Willett, popular oboist and music professor from the University of Missouri, will return this month to the Swinney Conservatory of Music at Central Methodist University in Fayette for a new concert.

The concert is Sunday, Sept. 24, at Willie Mae Kountz Recital Hall at 7:30 p.m. The concert is free and the public is invited to attend.

Joining Willett will be his pianist Natalia Bolshakova and Leigh Munoz, playing bassoon.

The three will perform music from a variety of composers. The program includes “Seven Variations on Bei Männern, welche Liebe fühlen, WoO 46” from Mozart’s opera The Magic Flute by Ludwig van Beethoven and arranged by Dan Willett;

4th Solo de Concert, Op. 77 (Moderato-andante-rondo) by Stanislas Verroust; “Concerto for Oboe (Moderato, Poco andante, and Poco allegro)” by Bohuslav Martin; and Carmen Suite for Oboe, Bassoon and Piano (“Aragonaise,” “Le Dragons d’Alcala,” “Séguedille et Duo,” “Habanera,” and “Danse Bohème”) by Georg Bizet and arranged by Willett.

In addition to teaching at MU, Willett presents frequent solo and chamber recitals. He has performed with the St. Louis Symphony, Missouri Chamber Orchestra, Kammerguild Chamber Orchestra, and multiple times for the International Double Reed Society.

As a member of the Missouri Woodwind Quintet, he has performed in the U.S., Brazil, and China. He recorded Maslanka’s Quintets Nos. 1-3; and has performed and recorded Two Hemisphereswith Oliveira.

Willett has also released recordings of Sonata for Oboe and PianoChamber Concerto for English Horn and String Quartet, and Jesu, Joy. Active as a composer and arranger, he was featured on Romantic Winds. He earned a Bachelor of Music Education and Master of Music from Michigan State University.

Natalia Bolshakova, pianist, studied at the Moscow Conservatory and the University of North Texas. She has been a prizewinner in many competitions, including New Orleans International Piano Competition and the Ima Hogg Young Artist International Competition. She has performed as a soloist with orchestras across the U.S. and Europe and was noted as “one of the most promising musicians of the younger generation” in 1997.

In 2005 she premiered Souvenirs for piano, written for her by James Wintle at the Nancyphonies Festival in Nancy, France. Equally successful as a chamber musician, Bolshakova has actively collaborated with vocalists and instrumentalists.

Leigh Munoz is an adept orchestral musician, soloist, and educator. She is the founder and owner of GoBassoon Reeds, which provides professionals, amateurs, and students with bassoon and contrabassoon reeds. She has also spread her knowledge of reed making throughout the country.

This year she will serve as second bassoon for the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas. She has held contrabassoon positions in the Springfield and the Cedar Rapids Symphonies, and currently is a substitute bassoonist and contrabassoonist for the Kansas City Symphony, Lyric Opera, and Kansas City Ballet.

In addition to performing as soloist with a number of other symphony orchestras, Munoz is currently on the faculty for the Bassoon Institute at Interlochen Arts Camp and has taught at other camps, academies and educational institutions, including Washburn University and Missouri State University. She currently teaches at the University of Missouri.

She holds degrees from Oberlin Conservatory, Ohio University and New England Conservatory.

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