Pays to Play

UNH student earns vibraphone scholarship

February 26. 2014 11:54PM

DURHAM — Yamaha Corporation of America and The Percussive Arts Society have named Nihco Gallo, a junior at the University of New Hampshire, as winner of the 2013 PAS/Yamaha Terry Gibbs Vibraphone Scholarship.

The $1,000 scholarship honors legendary jazz vibraphonist and Percussive Arts Society Hall of Fame member Terry Gibbs.

The scholarship is awarded annually to a full-time student registered in an accredited college or university school of music for the following academic year.

"The recognition ... has developed my playability immensely," said Gallo. "Being a jazz musician and a college student at the same time is financially challenging, and Yamaha has made a huge difference in my life through this scholarship."

Gallo began playing jazz vibraphone at 13, playing in New Hampshire honors concert and jazz bands in high school.

In addition to being a part of a local band, he participated in a drums corps and played with the New Hampshire Philharmonic.

By his senior year, Gallo had been ranked No. 1 in the state on vibraphone, drum kit and mallet percussion among high school competitors. He spent the fall of his junior year in college in Budapest as a student at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music.

Presently, Gallo plays in the Seacoast area, gigging in The Gallo/Healey Duo with pianist Garret Healey and playing drums in a quartet with vibraphonist Kevin Farrell and guitarist Ethan Brown.

In addition to studying jazz performance at UNH, Gallo is completing a degree in mechanical engineering.

Following his graduation next year, Gallo hopes to pursue a career in designing and building vibraphones while continuing to make music.

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