Author: Kate Bustamante
The music department has showcased the talents of their professors through a series of Facuty Artist Concerts (FACs) for 11 years. Next Saturday Professor Riner Scivally (‘73) will too get to share his abilities as he kicks off this semester’s concert series with his band, “The Scivally Quintet.”
Scivally, who specializes in guitar and teaches private lessons at Occidental, is excited to get his turn to play. As an alumnus, the opportunity to perform is even more rewarding.
“It’s kind of a privilege,” Scivally said. “It exposes the students to what the music teachers do and you get to hear music in a nice concert environment…and it’s free! It widens your cultural horizons.”
The FAC series gives students the ability to see their professors outside of the cassroom. “The concert I went to was beautiful,” Nick Gallagher (sophomore) said. Gallagher had the opportunity to see a FAC put on by percussion professor and Occidental drum line coach Yuri Inoo.
“It was pretty inspiring to see Professor Inoo display her own talents. She had alluded to her skills during the time she was coaching us but we had never gotten to see them like that,” Gallagher said.
The goal of the FAC program is to demonstrate the diversity of talents among the faculty.
“The Oxy Music Department faculty performs a wide variety of musical genres and styles, from jazz to opera to chamber music and more,” department chair Irene Girton said. “We love to give the opportunity for our faculty to perform.”
After graduating Occidental, Scivally went to USC to get his Masters in music. He has since collaborated with many local musicians, such as Isla Eckinger and Jennifer Robin, who feature his guitar skills on their albums. He has also performed at the Playboy Jazz Festival, toured Japan with the Percy Faith Orchestra and been a part of the Pasadena Jazz Institute Big Band. Then he formed the Scivally Quintent with other jazz artists, David Sills, who plays saxophone and flute, Jim Szilagyi (piano), Putter Smith (bass), and Tim Pleasant (drum). The group has been playing gigs all over L.A., particularly Pasadena and hopes to get a strong turnout when they come to Bird Hall this weekend. The Scivally Quintet will perform jazz music from their latest album “Keys Found” as well as some classic jazz pieces.
Music students said they look forward to watching their professors perform. “I am extremely excited to be able to see the Scivally/Sills Quintet perform at Oxy,” Kevin Witkow (junior) said. “Each week I look forward to studying guitar with Professor Scivally, and being able to see him play with with his own group is an opportunity I won’t miss.”
The department encourages more of the student body to come to these concerts, as well as the many others on campus.
“We have a very active concert schedule,” Professor Girton said. “We showcase professors, students, and also bring in artists from all over the world.”
Their online calendar is currently down so keep your eye on the student digest and posters around the campus.
To find out more about Riner Scivally and his music visit his website at: http://www.rinerscivally.com
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