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Across the Grain

Bassoon and Percussion Duo

Susan Nelson and Colin McCall
Duo side by side.jpg

Performing and commissioning music for bassoon and percussion is an exciting endeavor for the duo. The sound possibilities are endless and we are exploring a variety of musical styles and percussion instrumentation.

Recent projects include a recording session of several pieces by Jenni Brandon, Nathan Daughtrey, and David Bixler (release coming soon) as well as a collaboration with Piyawat Louilarpprasert for a piece with electronics called "Double Metallics."

The ensemble offers performances, masterclasses, chamber coachings, and student outreach programs.

Live Performances

BGSU's New Music Festival, Live Stream

David Bixler's Not Yet for bassoon and marimba

BGSU Recital, Live Stream

Wooden Stone by Jenni Brandon for bassoon and percussion

About Us

Susan Nelson is the Associate Professor of Bassoon and Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Studies at Bowling Green State University (BGSU), Ohio, and enjoys an active career as a performer, teacher, and clinician. Dr. Nelson is an advocate for new music as well as chamber music for the bassoon, and is the Director of the non-profit organization Bassoon Chamber Music Composition Competition (BCMCC) and founding member of Across the Grain bassoon/percussion duo. Dr. Nelson teaches at various camps, including BGSU’s Double Reed Camp and The Renova Festival. She has performed with the Classical Music Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria, Michigan Opera Theatre, Shreveport Symphony Orchestra, Toledo Symphony Orchestra, Oklahoma City Philharmonic Orchestra, Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra, Adrian Symphony Orchestra, and Helena Symphony, among others. She has also given solo performances at the International Double Reed Society Conferences in Boulder (CO), Redlands (CA), Oxford (OH), New York, Tokyo (Japan), and Thailand, among others.

Dr. Nelson has taught bassoon and theory at Stephen F. Austin State University and played with the Stone Fort Wind Quintet in Nacogdoches, Texas. She also taught at both Adrian (MI) and Heidelberg (OH) Colleges and was a member of the Heidelberg faculty wind quintet. She also held the position of principal bassoon in the Great Falls Symphony and was a member of the Chinook Winds quintet in Great Falls, Montana. She can be heard on the album Elements, through the MSR Classics label, which features winning works from select BCMCC competitions. Dr. Nelson is a graduate of the University of Kansas, the University of Oklahoma, and the University of Michigan. Her primary teachers include Jeffrey Lyman, Carl Rath, and Alan Hawkins. Dr. Nelson is a Fox Artist. 

Colin McCall is a percussionist, collaborator, and photographer currently based out of Ann Arbor, MI. His goal as a musician is to find ways to present both complex and accessible percussion music in mediums which connect with audiences on a basic, human level. Through use of audience participation, original compositions, and multimedia components, he strives to develop a fresh and engaging performance style. Dr. McCall has seen success in several competitions, most recently being named the winner of both the Black Swamp Multi Percussion Competition and the Atlanta Symphony Modern Snare Drum Competition. He also participated in the renowned TROMP International Percussion Competition, and was a semi-finalist in the Northwestern Percussion Competition. As a videographer and collaborator, Dr. McCall has partnered with the Virginia Technical University Percussion Ensemble, Harvard Ballet Company, University of Missouri Percussion Ensemble, and Chautauqua Institution Theatre Company. He holds doctoral and master's degrees from the University of Michigan, where he worked under the tutelage of Joseph Gramley and Jonathan Ovalle. He also holds a bachelor's degree in music performance from the Eastman School of Music, where he studied with Michael Burritt. Dr. McCall proudly endorses the products of Innovative Percussion and Remo drumheads.

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