Percussion Ensemble and Marimba Choir
Dr. David P. Eyler, music association professor, directs both the Percussion Ensemble and the Marimba Choir and has served as director of percussion studies since 1987. Under his direction, these two ensembles have released two CDs: "Wood, Metal, Skin" and "Christmas Favorites." He also organizes the college's annual Day of Percussion, about which he's presented two workshops at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention.
Eyler is principal timpanist of the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony Orchestra, where he premiered and recorded the "Concerto for Timpani and Orchestra" that he commissioned of composer Russell Peterson. He has been featured as marimba soloist, conducted the symphony, served two consecutive terms on the board of trustees and chaired the orchestra committee. Eyler has also served as principal percussionist of the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra and the Baton Rouge Opera, and has performed with several others.
Before being appointed to the first full-time percussion position at Concordia, Eyler served in the unique position of Tri-College percussionist for Concordia, North Dakota State University in Fargo and Minnesota State University Moorhead from 1987 to 2000. He earned his degrees from Louisiana State University, Ohio State University and Frostburg State University, and attended the Peabody Conservatory of Music. He is also an educational clinician/endorser for Mike Balter Mallets, Grover Pro-Percussion, Pro-Mark Sticks and Sabian Cymbals.
Musicians in Concordia’s dynamic Percussion Ensemble, directed by David P. Eyler, perform on the many definite and indefinite pitched instruments of the percussion family – and have earned themselves a reputation as one of the most outstanding percussion ensembles in the Upper Midwest. They play a wide variety of pieces, from standard percussion repertoire to new arrangements of popular, classical and folk music. And thanks to a yearly spring tour, audiences in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota are enjoying their music.
In 2000, the Percussion Ensemble presented the world premier of “Bängala” by David Childs and later featured saxophonist Russell Peterson in the world premier of his “Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Percussion Orchestra.” The ensemble has also been featured on Minnesota Public Radio’s Eric Friesen’s “In The Music Room” and the “Regional Artists In Concert” series. The ensemble has also been selected five times to perform at the Minnesota Music Educators Association Convention in the Twin Cities.
Select members of the Percussion Ensemble are invited to play in the Marimba Choir, which was formed in 1987 by director Dr. David Eyler. These talented marimbists perform music ranging from transcriptions of works by Bach and Mozart to Latin American, pops and ragtime. The Marimba Choir performs each semester with the Percussion Ensemble, as well as at numerous civic and community events.
The Marimba Choir has performed at state and regional conventions, including the Midwest Kodaly Music Educators of America, the Land O’ Lakes Barber Shop, the Regional American Guild of Organists Conventions and five times at the Minnesota Music Educators Association Convention. The choir was featured in a special performance during a live radio broadcast of Minnesota Public Radio’s Eric Friesen's “In The Music Room.”