University of Central Florida
John Almeida, director of the University of Central Florida Trumpet Ensemble, gave the downbeat for the prelude to the Opening Concert of the 2001 International Trumpet Guild Conference. Robert J. Brownlows Fantasia and Toccata reverberated off the limestone walls and the high-peaked wood ceiling of the Neu Chapel. Almeida conducted his sextet energetically and the students responded to his direction. The UCF piccolo trumpeter, in particular, performed with flair and precision for the packed chapel. Theres a Great Day Coming, arranged by Terry Everson, concluded the prelude program in a jazz vein. Much appreciated were the improvisations brought forth from several fine jazz players within the ensemble. Overall the group played with precision, balance, and excellent technique. UCF gave an attentive and appreciative audience a great start to a long-anticipated conference
Southwest Missouri State University
The Southwest Missouri State University Trumpet Ensemble, directed by Grant Peters, gave an excellent performance prior to the Sonus Brass recital. The group played Aaron Stanleys Ozark Festival Fanfare, a vaguely jazz-inspired piece. This short (about 3:30) piece is built upon driving rhythms in a syncopated fashion. The students performed with good intonation between the ensemble and the B-flat piccolo trumpet. The final piece was K. Peters arrangement of W.A. Mozarts Overture to The Magic Flute. The group added a second piccolo trumpet for this selection. Both players responded well to the challenging lines delegated to them. The tempo of the well-known allegro theme was brisk and comfortable. All of the themes were present and equally evident, which made for an enjoyable prelude.
Eastern New Mexico
The Eastern New Mexico Trumpet Ensemble directed by John Kennedy performed prelude music for the 8:00 pm Wednesday night concert. The ensemble opened with Prelude and Fugue by Raynor Brown. The fugue portion of this piece featured independent lines performed in a secure fashion by the ensemble. Jessica Mullen, first trumpet in the group, composed the second piece, Peters First Battle. Mullen is a religion major at the university. The ENM Trumpet Ensemble closed its prelude program with Concerto for Clarini and Timpani by Johann Ernst Altenberg. This prelude presentation featured a variety of music performed in a precise, sensitive fashion.
The Kansas State University Trumpet Ensemble, directed by Gary Mortenson, opened their program with Salute by Leslie Bassett. This fanfare-style work was performed with great
precision and wonderful sound. The next two works on the program included two premieres commissioned by the Kansas State University Trumpet Ensemble. Jay Gilbert, Director of Bands and Chair of the Music Department at Doane College in Crete, Nebraska wrote Early Morning on the Big Blue. This impressionistic work used several mute changes to create a wide variety of tonal colors within the
ensemble. The final work on their program was Intrepid by Bryan Schroeder. Bryan Schroeder is a student of Gary Mortenson at Kansas State University. Both of these new works are welcomed additions to the trumpet ensemble repertoire. The program was impressive not only for the new works introduced but for the ensembles accuracy and unity of sound.
Centennial Brass, a student brass quartet directed by Albert Lilly performed two works as a prelude to the Chicago Brass Choirs concert at 4:30 pm on Friday. Selections included Scherzo by John Cheetham and Little Fugue in g minor by J.S. Bach as arranged by Lilly. The ensemble consisted of Lilly on trumpet, Emily Frame on horn, Cayla Heacock on euphonium, and Ryan Brown on tuba. The quartet provided a change of pace featuring a mixed brass quartet in place of the normal trumpet ensemble prelude.
Ithaca Youth Trumpet Troupe
The Ithaca Youth Trumpet Troupe under the direction of Jane Dunnick provided prelude music prior to the Paul Merkelo recital at 3:00 pm on Saturday in Wheeler Concert Hall. This group, comprised of the public school students of Dunnick, was a big hit last year at the 2000 Conference in Purchase. They performed three works for their prelude program. These included the premiere of Toccata by William Cowdery, Finale from Suite for Five Trumpets by Ronald Lo Presti, and the recent ITG commissioned work Prelude and Fugue for Trumpet Choir by Eric Ewazen. This outstanding ensemble is notable for its rhythmic security, its ability to play an entire range of dynamics, and for its sensitivity to detail. This entire experience is obviously fun for these young musicians, and this sense of joy heightens their ability to convey the music to the enthusiastic audience. One hopes that future ITG Conferences will see more youth oriented ensembles performing in prelude spots!
University of Northern Colorado
The University of Northern Colorado Trumpet Choir under the direction of William Pfund gave a stellar prelude performance introducing the Tiger Okoshi performance at 8:00 pm on Friday night. Suite for Six Trumpets by Anthony Plog comprised their entire presentation. Plog, a noted trumpet soloist known and respected internationally, has been writing outstanding music for brass sonorities for decades. In the three-movement Suite for Trumpets Plog presents a variety of tempi, moods, dynamics, rhythmic devices, and technical challenges to the performers. In each of these various areas the UNC ensemble more than held their own. Pfund has brought fine ensembles to ITG a number of times, and this group lives up to the strong tradition he has established over many years. With one on a part, each performer had to meet the demands of Plogs challenging writing style. In every respect, the prelude was a success.
The Ohio University Trumpet Ensemble, directed by John Schlabach performed three works: Rev It Up, written for eight trumpets, was commissioned for the 2001 conference by Ohio University resident composer Mark Philips; Capriccio for Six trumpets by Allen Vizzutti; and Concert Fanfare, for seven trumpets, by Eric Ewazen. All three pieces by composers born between 1952 and 1954 exhibited a blend of open and muted writing. Rev It Up ended with the trumpeters using plungers and turning around in 360-degree circles in a fashion suggested by the title. By the end of Ohio Universitys presentation, the audience needed no further revving. The ensemble was tight, the individual parts were in sync, and all three pieces brought a sense of excitement and musicianship that was a joy to experience.
Eastern Kentucky University
The Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) Trumpet Ensemble played two pieces as a prelude to the Boosey & Hawkes Commisions Collection concert: Sphere and Heralding. Sphere is a composition by Richard Bromley, a member of the composition faculty at EKU. The work is dedicated to Thelonius Monk. Director Dr. Jonathon Martin put the ensemble through its paces in this very dissonant work. Central to this composition was a recurring line forming a foundation, with the other lines swirling above it. Many times the group was divided into groups of two, with the duos playing running lines in major 2nds. The next piece, Heralding, was written by Ronald LoPresti and featured Andrea Adams. This 3 work is interesting, with diatonic lines blurring into more chromatic ones featuring atonal clusters. Dr. Martin joined the group, leading his students in a solid unison at the end. Both pieces served as an effective prelude to the commissions concert.
University of South Carolina Trumpet
The University of South Carolina Trumpet Ensemble, under the direction of A. Keith Amstutz presented an interesting prelude program prior to David Gurriers recital on Thursday, at 1:30 pm in Wheeler Concert Hall. An overflow crowd enjoyed the world premiere of Fanfare and Variations by Robert J. Bradshaw. The ensemble performed this interesting new work with fine rhythm, intonation, and accuracy. Each variation logically led to the next. The group closed its prelude with Is/Ought by Reginald Bain. Both works presented are welcome additions to the trumpet ensemble repertoire.
Texas Christian University
The Texas Christian University Trumpet Ensemble, under the direction of Jon Burgess performed Fanfare, Dance and Chorale by James P. Allen. The work is a recent commission by the TCU group and is a welcome addition to the repertoire. Burgess will host the 2003 ITG Conference at TCU. If the level of quality apparent in this ensembles playing is any indication of what that conference will be like in 2003, the event should be quite a treat. The ensemble performed this interesting commission in a confident, articulate manner. The ensembles intonation, blend and fine sense of collective rhythm were all well received. All of these positive observations were in evidence in each of the three sections of Allens composition.
University of Texas at Arlington
The University of Texas at Arlington Trumpet Ensemble, under the direction of Rick Bogard performed two works as prelude music prior to the Atlantic Brass Quintet concert at 8:00 pm on Thursday. Entrada by George Chave and Trumpet Octet by Ken Edwards provided the audience with two contrasting works that were well played and thoroughly enjoyed by the audience. The Edwards piece, in particular, displayed the abilities of the fine ensemble in a favorable light. The UT-Arlington Trumpet Ensemble is comprised of 13 student members all of which performed with accuracy and clarity.
Southwest Texas State University
The Southwest Texas State University, directed by Jack C. Laumer, presented two premiere performances of Michael Row Your Boat Ashore, arranged by Gary Slechta (slechtamusic.com) and God Bless the Child, composed by Billie Holiday-Arthur Herzog Jr., a James G. Hudson arrangement. Opening with Michael Row Your Boat Ashore in the Neu Chapel, Laumer conducted his five B-flat
trumpets and five flugels with pride and confidence. With initial tentativeness quickly overcome, the ensemble entertained extremely well. As the combo rowed further into the piece, intonation and execution improved.
God Bless the Child, made famous by Billie Holidays lush jazz voice and reinvented by Blood, Sweat and Tears, was an even better performance. Changing brass personnel to six trumpets and four flugels, all parts blended well. The lower trumpet parts were immensely more confident while the trumpet solo lifted spirits with riffs and excellent vibrato. The SWT musicians enjoyed themselves as they blessed the near-capacity chapel with expert Texas hospitality.
Louisiana State University
The Louisiana State University Trumpet Ensemble, under the direction of Jessie DeJesus, supplied the prelude to Max and Giuliano Sommerhalders presentation/recital. The group performed Jan Bachs Fanfare and Fugue for six trumpets, a two-part work that started with an atonal fanfare. This was followed by a harmon-muted section, which revealed interesting colors when some of the players were using the mutes and other were not. The Fugue theme had wide leaps in it, which the players navigated well. Bach creates some rather dense textures as the voices begin to overlap. DeJesus conducted with a lot of spirit, and communicated this spirit to her musicians nicely. The piece ended with the group playing a rhythmic unison, which was carried off in high style
The Lamar University Trumpet Ensemble under the direction of Raul Sosa Ornelas presented two works, Trumpets of Jubal by Darrell Holt and Coursing Toward Mariachi by Maurice Rissman, as prelude music to the United States Air Force Band of Flight concert featuring Allen Vizzutti before the final concert of the 2001 ITG Conference. Both works featured a variety of contemporary compositional techniques including frequent mute changes, extended techniques (flutter tonguing, glissandos, rips, etc.) and advanced rhythmic schemes. The ensemble did an admirable job of interpreting this difficult music requiring a great deal of logistics (both musically and from an equipment standpoint) to perform.
University of Wisconsin-Whitewater
The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Trumpet Ensemble, under the direction of Frank Hanson presented prelude music before a master class by Allen Vizzutti at 10:00 am on Saturday. The ensemble performed Scottish Fantasy by Dennis Horton. Horton teaches trumpet on the faculty of Central Michigan University, and has published a variety of works for the trumpet and brass ensemble mediums over the past fifteen years. Scottish Fantasy is an excellent adaptation of several traditional Scottish melodies for trumpet ensemble. Hanson conducted the group through the different aspects of this work with confidence and stylistic awareness. Nocturne for Trumpet Choir, Op. 118 by David Uber was an interesting contemporary study typical of Ubers trumpet and brass writings. The UW-Whitewater ensemble was comprised of nine members.