Not the most typical combination but in December of 2017 Rela Percussion performed a program on entirely glass instruments. The instruments were created as part of the Guest Artist Pavilion Project at the Toledo Museum of Art. Usually reserved for visual artists, Rela was the first musical ensemble to participate in the program. Over the course of two weeks, with the help of glass artists, Rela created a complete set of glass instruments including four glass marimbas, singing bowls, goblets, fluted bowls, gongs and udu drums. As part of the project Rela commissioned composer David Gillingham to write a new marimba quartet to be premiered on glass marimbas. In addition, ensemble member Mike List composed a multi-movement work exploring the different voices and sonic possibilities of an all glass percussion ensemble. This program features the visually and sonically stunning sounds of glass.
Music for a Globalized Percussion Quartet
Rela Percussion’s diverse experiences shine though in their program drawing from their training in classical percussion they also bring influences from experiences in African, Arabic, Caribbean, and Indian music as well as jazz and marching percussion. Along with western and global percussion instruments the group draws sound from objects ranging from metal pipe to flower pots. This concert features tuneful melodic compositions with a global feel as well as high energy drumming pieces.