Guest Artist: Liam Teague

Liam Teague is Professor of Music and Head of Steelpan studies at Northern Illinois University (NIU), where he also directs the renowned NIU Steelband. Teague is the recipient of an NIU Board of Trustees Professorship Award (2022) and a Presidential Research, Scholarship and Artistry Professor Award (2018).

Hailed as the “Paganini of the Steelpan”, his commitment to demonstrating the great musical possibilities of the steelpan has taken him to throughout the world, and he has received many awards from his homeland of Trinidad and Tobago, including the Humming Bird National Award (Silver) and the Ansa McAl Caribbean Award for Excellence.

Teague has won several notable competitions such as the Trinidad and Tobago National Steelband Festival Solo Championship and the Saint Louis Symphony Volunteers Association Young Artist Competition. He has also performed with many diverse ensembles which include National Symphony Orchestra, Taiwan National Symphony, Czech National Symphony, Saint Louis Symphony, Panama National Symphony, Chicago Sinfonietta, Vermeer String Quartet, Avalon String Quartet, Hannaford Street Silver Brass Ensemble, Nexus, Dartmouth Wind Ensemble, Indiana University Symphonic Band, University of Wisconsin-Madison Marching Band, Nutrien Silver Stars Steel Orchestra, and the BpTT Renegades Steel Orchestra.

Teague has appeared in concert with Grammy-Award winning musicians Paquito D’Rivera, Dave Samuels, Zakir Hussain and Dame Evelyn Glennie, and has regularly collaborated with NIU colleagues Robert Chappell(multi-instrumentalist) and Faye Seeman(harp) with whom he co-founded the steelpan and harp duo Pangelic.

He has also presented and performed at several Percussive Arts Society International Conventions (PASIC) and educational institutions across the globe. Liam Teague has served as an adjudicator for many events including the International Pan Ramajay Competition and Virginia Arts Festival- PANorama Caribbean Music Festival.

Many of his compositions and arrangements are published with MaumauMusic, PanPress, RamajayMusic, Wendeln Music Works, and he has commissioned outstanding composers to write for the steelpan, including Michael Colgrass, Jan Bach, Libby Larsen, Andy Akiho, Deborah Fisher Teason, Joey Sellers, Ben Wahlund, Erik Ross, Kevin Bobo, David Gordon, Robert Chappell, Geof Bradfield, Casey Cangelosi, Gustavo Leone, Victor Provost, Etienne Charles, James Gourlay, and Reggie Thomas.

He is steelband director at Birch Creek Music Performance Center in Door County, Wisconsin, and has also taught and performed at the California State University Summer Arts Camp and at the Interlochen Academy for the Performing Arts.

Teague is also the author of a steelpan method for beginners published by the Hal Leonard Corporation, the world’s largest publisher of print music.

Liam Teague has created arrangements for Panorama, the most celebrated steelband competition in the world, for Nutrien Silver Stars Steel Orchestra, Harvard Harps Steel Orchestra, Starlift Steel orchestra, and Skiffle Steel Orchestra. He has many recordings to his credit, including Hands Like Lightning, For Lack of Better Words, Panoramic: Rhythm Through an Unobstructed View and Open Window.

Learn more about Liam Teague here.


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