ASC Music Department & ALMA Present Valley Native and World-Renowned Percussionist Valerie Naranjo


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Naranjo in a 2007 concert at Adams State

From the San Luis Valley to the Saturday Night Live band, Valerie Dee Naranjo has become one of the best percussionists in the world, and now she plans to return to the valley for a concert at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 14, in Leon Memorial Hall, located at Richardson Ave. and Second St. on the Adams State College campus. Naranjo will conduct a hand drumming class for women 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 12, in Leon Memorial Hall. Both events are sponsored by the Alamosa Live Music Association (ALMA), Vic Firth Sticks and Mallets.

According to DRUM! Magazine, "If you've ever had the split-second opportunity to spy Naranjo in action when SNL cuts to a commercial break, you've witnessed a blur of energy behind a fortress of percussion." DRUM! readers named her world music percussionist the year in 2005. In addition to her regular gig as percussionist in NBC's "Saturday Night Live," band, Naranjo has also played for Broadway's "Lion King," as well as for artists such as Tori Amos, David Byrne, the Paul Winter Consort, Airto Moreira, and the international percussion ensemble, MEGADRUMS, which includes Milton Cardona, Zakir Hussain, and Glen Velez. Recent film score recordings include "Final Fantasy - The Dream Within" and "Frida."

All proceeds from the concert and class will go towards the purchase of a new marimba for the Adams State music department percussion studio. Tickets for Monday night's concert are $12 for the general public, $10 for ALMA members, and $5 for students and seniors. For the Saturday afternoon class, no drum is necessary, but only limited seating will be available and cost is on a donation basis.

Naranjo endorses Avedis Zildjian cymbals, Pearl/Adams Latin and Concert Percussion, and Vic Firth products as a soloist and clinician. More information is available at ALMA.

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