Percussion duo presents The Innocents to open Kent State School of Music’s 2019-2020 concert season

Kent, OhioNew Music at Kent State will open the School of Music’s 2019-2020 concert season with celebrated percussionists Allen Otte and John Lane on Sat., Sept. 14, at 7:30 p.m.  Presented as part of the Vanguard New Music Guest Artists Series, the duo will present “The Innocents,” music to bring understanding and awareness to the issue of wrongful conviction in the U.S. justice system. The concert is free and open to the public in Ludwig Recital Hall, Center for the Performing Arts at 1325 Theatre Dr. on the beautiful Kent Campus. This concert is sponsored by the Kent Percussion Society. 

First conceived of by Allen and John in 2006, “The Innocents” began as a performance art piece in collaboration with Cincinnati Director, Michael Burnhal, and actors from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. Their work was inspired and complemented by an exhibition of photography by Taryn Simon at the Cincinnati Contemporary Art Center. The work was revised in 2018 and distilled down into music and words for two speaking performers. The approximately one-hour, continuous work makes use of non-traditional instruments, African mbiras/kalimbas and electronics.

Now faculty Emeritus from the University of Cincinnati, Allen Otte is an acclaimed performer and teacher who is in demand worldwide. He is the founder of the internationally renowned Percussion Group Cincinnati, an ensemble which was inducted into the Percussive Arts Society Hall of Fame in 2017. His performance career has led to invitations to perform with the Nashville Symphony at Carnegie Hall, as soloist at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention and university concert halls. As an educator, he teaches classical and contemporary percussion, eurhythmics, and literature seminars as well as leading and coaching chamber music.

With a performance career spanning the globe, John Lane has appeared on stages throughout the Americas, Australia and Japan. His creative work and collaborations extend through percussion to poetry/spoken word and theatre. Central to this work is the commissioning of new music and interdisciplinary collaborations, including recent engagements with Peter Garland, Mark Applebaum, and John Luther Adams, among others. Currently, John serves as the Director of Percussion Studies and Associate Professor at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX. Additionally, he is an active member of the Percussive Arts Society, serving on the New Music/Research Committee.

About the School of Music

The Hugh A. Glauser School of Music at Kent State University, nestled in beautiful and vibrant Kent, Ohio, is one of the most distinguished schools of music in the Midwest. For over 100 years, the School of Music has nurtured the next generation of music educators, performing artists and scholars. We offer some of the most comprehensive and innovative degree programs in the country, with an emphasis on experiential learning, quality scholarship and immersive technical training. Students enrolled in our programs can expect a warm and supportive environment where fostering professional growth and personal development is a priority. Our graduates have gone on to have successful careers in music education, music performance, scholarly research, higher education and administration.

During the summer, the School of Music hosts the Kent Blossom Music Festival in cooperation with The Cleveland Orchestra and Blossom Music Center. The festival is regarded as one of the premier centers for professional music training for young artists in the United States. Now entering its 51st season in 2019, the festival continues its now half-century legacy of helping to launch the careers of young artists with alumni holding positions of prominence in many of the world’s finest orchestras, chamber ensembles and educational institutions.


Learn more about The InnocentsLearn more about New Music at Kent State


Media Inquiries
Andrew Paa, Marketing Assistant | 330-672-0894

POSTED: Thursday, August 15, 2019 04:26 PM
Updated: Friday, December 9, 2022 08:22 AM