William Paterson Chamber Winds to Present Sensory-Friendly Family Concert of Dan Brown’s “Wild Symphony” on October 28

The WP Chamber Winds, led by Teresa Purcell-Giles, assistant professor of music

The William Paterson University Chamber Winds will present a multimedia, sensory-friendly performance of Dan Brown’s Wild Symphony on Friday, October 28 at 3:00 p.m. in the Shea Center for Performing Arts on the campus in Wayne.

Featuring nearly two dozen musical portraits drawn from the animal kingdom, Wild Symphony, composed by Dan Brown, the No. 1 New York Times best-selling author of The Da Vinci Code, springs to life both musically and visually. From the joyous rhythms of “Bouncing Kangaroo” to the mysterious melodies of “Wondrous Whale” to the hair-raising harmonies of “Brilliant Bat,” this is a very wild symphony indeed.

This sensory-friendly family concert is designed to be a welcoming, inclusive, and comfortable musical experience for those on the autism spectrum or with other sensory or cognitive needs. Accommodations include low- to medium-volume and lighting ranges, space for children to move or walk around with a chaperone's supervision, provision of ear plugs, and an adjoining sensory-friendly space for those who need a break from the concert environment (outfitted with sensory manipulatives and carpeting).

The concert will include projected images from Brown’s vibrantly illustrated New York Times bestselling children’s book of the same title, which has been translated in more than 20 countries worldwide. Narration will be provided by Phillip Sprayberry, a local author, stage director, and William Paterson University adjunct professor of communication. The music will be performed by the WP Chamber Winds, an elite ensemble comprised of 35 of the University’s top woodwind, brass, and percussion student players.

“This opportunity for our students to prepare sensory-friendly concert programming has been an invaluable one,” says Teresa Purcell-Giles, assistant professor of music and director of bands at William Paterson and conductor of the performance. “Many of the students in the Chamber Winds are music education majors preparing for careers teaching music in schools. Developing concrete ways to modify our teaching and performing for those with sensory needs helps us make education more accessible. We believe that music is for everyone, so being able to incorporate pedagogies that are inclusive of neurodiverse learners is critical in that mission.”

Purcell-Giles joined the faculty in 2021. Active as a clinician, adjudicator, and guest conductor across the country, she has presented nationally on topics ranging from engaging audiences through interactive performances to wellness and injury prevention for conductors.

General admission tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children ages two and over. Tickets are free for members of the William Paterson community with a valid ID. Advance ticket purchase is strongly recommended. There is an additional $5 charge per ticket if purchased at the box office on the day of the show.

To purchase tickets, or for additional information, call the Shea Center for Performing Arts Box Office at 973-720-2371 or visit wp-presents.org.