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Trumpet Prelude Reports

The University of Oklahoma

The University of Oklahoma Trumpet Ensemble presented the prelude to the final evening concert on Saturday. The group premiered two pieces. The first, A Quiet Place arranged by Martin Saunders, was a sonorous selection that featured some excellent lyrical trumpet work from Lacey Redfield and the group as a whole. The second selection, Three Scenes, by Roland Barrett, contained three movements: “Locomotion,” “Nightfall,” and “Frantic Dance.” The piece showcased the group’s precision, power, and subtlety, garnering an enthusiastic round of applause from the sizeable audience. This ensemble was simply outstanding, a mature group playing well-conceived original compositions.

Texas Christian University

The TCU Trumpet Ensemble opened the first concert of the conference with an exciting performance of TCU composer Gerald Gabel’s Pasodoble for 12 Trumpets. Composed in a Spanish style, the twelve players were spread across the front of the Landreth Auditorium stage with excitement and energy. Although spatially separated in a straight line, the distance caused no difficulty for these young performers. In addition to thickly scored portions, the work called for brief solo statements and short virtuoso passages, all of which were performed with the appropriate flair and aplomb by the students. The ensemble often passed material between three choirs of four players, with one flugel in each choir. This timbre added much to the overall sound, particularly when contrasted against the large tutti sections performed by the entire group. Gabel’s Pasodoble is an effective composition for trumpet ensemble, and these players performed the work with attention to style, tuning, time, and detail. The TCU Trumpet Ensemble provided a wonderful opening to the 2003 conference!

University of Arizona

The University of Arizona trumpet ensemble conducted by professor of trumpet Edward Reid prepared the crowd for Wednesday evening’s concert in grand style. The first work the group performed was alla Scherzo by James Wiznerowicz. Filled with wonderful timbres and propelled by a driving ostinato, the thirteen members of the UA ensemble played exceptionally well on this work. The same held true with their second piece, a world premier written by Eric Ewazen titled Sonoran Desert Harmonies for Trumpet Choir. Many of the elements that have made Ewazen a favorite with trumpeters were present: a strong fanfare opening, folk-like melodies, and the wonderful Ewazen lyricism. The ensemble performance was polished and vibrant, and the dramatic ending was truly appreciated by all in attendance.

Kansas State University

On Friday evening a tremendous concert began with an outstanding warm-up prelude by the Kansas State University Trumpet Ensemble, Gary Mortenson, director. The group performed a difficult program of three varied pieces: Shattering The Glass Ceiling by Laurel Littrell, Ethereal Tincture by Craig Weston and 3-D Musketeer by Jukka Viitasaari. The ensemble performed with confidence and authority. Significantly, two of the three pieces performed were written for the KSU Trumpet Ensemble’s appearance at the 2003 ITG Conference.

Eastern New Mexico University

The Eastern New Mexico University Trumpet Ensemble, under the direction of professor John Kennedy, performed prior to the recital of Brazilian Trumpet Music featuring Luis Engelke. The group demonstrated polish and poise in performing three works, two of which were premiers written especially for the 2003 ITG Conference. ENMU opened with Fanfare V, a work by Anthony Alvarado. The piece effectively demonstrated the lyrical playing of the ensemble. This was followed by an arrangement of a Frank Zappa tune called Peaches en Regalia. The work had a lilt and grace that made it fun to listen to. The final work on the program, Sonata No. 1 in F by Peitro Baldassare, arranged by Gordon Mathie, featured Douglas Wilson on the piccolo trumpet. Wilson is professor of trumpet at Oral Roberts University, and showed with great virtuosity, at times soaring over the ensemble. The work itself was a hit with all in attendance, as was the entire performance by this well-prepared group.

Stephen F. Austin State University

Premiering two new works for trumpet, the Stephen F. Austin State University Trumpet Ensemble began the afternoon’s music with a full palate of bright, brilliant sounds. Under the direction of Gary Wurtz, the ensemble presented Jay Glossup’s Soul Winner, a work containing a bold series of fanfare passages alternating with chordal textures. The composer, in attendance for his premiere, recognized the appreciative applause for the new composition. Their second premiere, the cheerful-sounding Ebullience, written by Stephen Lias, centered on a homophonic treatment for the trumpets highlighting soaring melodies supported by energetic and beautiful harmonies. These eleven trumpeters demonstrated a very tight ensemble, an exciting start for what was to become a great afternoon for brass.

Southwest Texas State University

Directed by Jack Laumer, the Southwest Texas Trumpet Ensemble exhibited a wide range of colors during their performance of Russel Riepe’s Toccata for Ten Trumpets, which included noteworthy performances by two piccolo trumpets and two bass trumpets that supplemented the group’s well-balanced timbre. The group then seamlessly changed styles to perform Gary Slechta’s Charlier Numero Dos, a latin/jazz treatment of Charlier’s second etude. The audience appreciated this colorful version commissioned for SWT’s performance at the conference. Professor Laumer and the SWT students performed both works with a firm grasp of balance, intonation, and style, and presented a performance that the audience thoroughly enjoyed.

The University of Central Oklahoma

The University of Central Oklahoma Trumpet Ensemble, under the direction of James Klages offered two works in its impressive and excellently rehearsed performance prior to the Thursday night concert by Phil Driscoll. Both works, Giovanni Gabrieli’s Canzona XVI, arranged by Mr. Klages, and Nr. 64 (Choral) from Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, arranged by Jason Webb, were performed by memory.

While the Gabrieli, played antiphonally with three groups of four placed around the stage, was executed with excellent style and phrase, it was the Bach that provided the most interest. The work was written for three flugelhorns, three B-flat trumpets, and two piccolo trumpets that traded off and complimented the difficult solo trumpet lines, played by Webb and Clint Rohr.

Indiana University of Pennsylvania

The IUP trumpet ensemble, under the direction of Kevin Eisensmith, performed three works as a prelude to jazz trumpeter Scotty Barnhart’s lecture recital. Opening with Concert Piece for Eight Trumpets by Bruce Broughton, the group performed with a tremendous unified sound. They navigated the dense harmonies of the work quite well, and the result was a polished and musical performance. Scotty Barnhart (a former student of Kevin Eisensmith) joined the group for Here’s That Rainy Day arranged by Jim Olcott. Barnhart’s playing was a great addition, and the group seemed to draw energy from his presence. The ensemble closed with a Roger Harvey arrangement of Down by the Riverside. Students Steve Brown and Mike Cheripka each played improvised solos in this high-energy work that brought the prelude to a rousing conclusion.

Southern Methodist University

The trumpet prelude before the Marvin Stamm /Bill Mays “Inventions” recital was stunning. The Southern Methodist University Trumpet Ensemble performed the Ronald Lo Presti, Suite for Five Trumpets with excellent pitch and accuracy. Special mention should be given for the excellent balance and rhythm that this ensemble demonstrated throughout the three-movement work.

McNeese State University

The eight member-strong McNeese State University served as a prelude to the solo recital of Jens Lindemann, performing Night Riders Fanfare by Keith Gates. The work, approximately 90 seconds in length, was typical of the genre, and was played with strength, vigor, good intonation, and an excellent sense of balance and ensemble.

The group was also featured at the end of the recital that followed, performing Jens Lindemann’s arrangement of Play that Funky Music White Boy with appropriate style and verve.

University of New Mexico

The University of New Mexico Trumpet Ensemble, assisted by numerous members of the ITG Board of Directors and other conference attendees, performed William Wood’s Fanfares in the Round. Scored for piccolo, B-flat, and bass trumpets, with percussion, this work featured antiphonal effects coupled with powerful, dissonant chords for a result that resembled musical fireworks. To conclude what seemed to be a rather chaotic “free-for-all,” the piece ended with a triumphant major chord. The 40-member ensemble rivaled some of the large ensembles found on the annual “Festival of Trumpets” concert, and presented an exciting performance of this work.

Baylor University

The trumpet prelude for Wednesday night’s concert was performed by the Baylor University Trumpet Ensemble under the direction of Wiff Rudd. The ten-piece group performed Octaphonica, by Baylor professor of composition Scott McAllister. This contemporary composition, set in three sections, juxtaposed slow-moving scalar motifs in the flugelhorns and trumpets against rapid chromatic motifs in the trumpets and piccolo trumpets. The composer explored layering of complex chord structures and staggered entrances with dynamic swells throughout.

The University of Kansas Alumni

Past members of the University of Kansas trumpet studio gathered to perform for the opening of the Dallas Wind Symphony Concert. The group premiered two works written especially for the 2003 Conference. The opening work was Jayhawk Fantasy by John Prescott. Divided into two choirs, the work opened with a lyrical solo by Jon Lewis. The choirs traded phrases and passed around a rhythmic ostinato. The open sounding harmonies and superb ensemble of the group left a great impression on the audience. Scaling Mount Oread by Carl Johnson was another exceptional piece with dense harmonies and repeated rhythmic patterns. This wonderfully talented of former KU students provided the perfect introduction to the concert to come.

Southeastern Louisiana University

Fanfare for the Protean Age (2003) by Stephen Suber was the first of two preludes for the Southeastern Louisiana University Trumpet Ensemble. It was a great premiere of a short, powerful piece that built to a steady climax, growing from low to high, with effective use of held notes. The next piece Three Statements by Kevin Houben split the ensemble into two choirs for part of the piece. This too was a measured and controlled performance with neat mute colors and offbeat accents providing a rhythmic context. The last high note was especially tasteful and in tune! Well done to Bryan Depoy, the SLU Trumpet Ensemble, and the two composers of these compositions. It was a rock-solid prelude from start to finish.

Murray State University

H.I.F. Biber’s Sonata Sancta Polycarpi opened this prelude by Murray State University’s Trumpet Ensemble with joyous fanfare-like passages. The multi-sectioned piece was infused with grace and Baroque style. The group was aided by cello and violin playing the continuo parts. Under the direction of Robert Murray, the group filled the hall with sounds of regal splendor. Continuing in a very different style, John Steffa’s Fantasy for Trumpets began with long unison melodies. These unfolded into echoing passages over percussion and world music-influenced sounds heard through the auditorium’s sound system. Imitation, canon, as well as call-and-response sections were all heard to intriguing effect. The ensemble was very warmly recognized for their wonderful playing.

The University of Texas at Arlington

The thirteen-member ensemble, directed by Rick Bogard, performed two works for their prelude. Dispatch, by Andrew Walters, was written for the UTA Trumpet Ensemble’s performance at the 2003 ITG Conference. In three sections, this work featured ostinato patterns with a latin flavor and extensive use of syncopated rhythms. Several different types of mutes were used to great effect, especially the plunger. Their final work was an arrangement of Alexander’s Ragtime Band, written by Tom Booth. This light, easy swinging arrangement was fun for both performers and audience alike.

University of North Texas Alumni Ensemble

A large group of Mr. Haynie’s former students performed a trumpet tribute to a gentleman who has had such a profound influence upon the lives of so many. Two pieces were performed prior to R. Dale Olsen’s lecture on John James Haynie, both of which were clever in that they featured excerpts of technical drills which Haynie students came to know all too well. First Call by Robert Kase was cast in 6/8 time and had a type of hunting horn quality. It was also punctuated with several 32nd note runs in all ranges – high, low, and in between. The second piece, Some High Notes, A Few Low Notes, and One Too Many Trumpets, by Justin Raines, was a virtual catalogue of sample drills one would encounter in the Haynie Studio. John Haynie always considered it very important that his students should cultivate and eventually own any technical skill necessary for a successful life in music. What an appropriate prelude to a lecture devoted to the life of this great pedagogue!

The University of Kansas

The University of Kansas Trumpet Ensemble, under the direction of Christopher Moore, presented two compositions as a prelude to the Saturday morning lecture/demonstration by Rob Roy McGregor on audition and performance preparation. Festival Fanfare by Joseph Turrin was performed with the power and precision required of this fanfare. The second selection, The True Game by Kip Haaheim was a premiere performance. In this interesting work the ensemble performed with attention to detail and displayed a mature sound, fine balance, and rhythmic integrity that was a joy to experience. Well done!

San Angelo State University

The Angelo State University from San Angelo, Texas, began their prelude performance with Sinfonia, by Adriano Banchieri, arranged for six trumpets by their director John Irish. This work was in three sections: Adagio/Allegro/Adagio and began in the style of a canzon, with the main motive introduced in turn by each member of the ensemble.

The second and final work of their performance was Three Fanfares, by Ulysses Kay. Each fanfare lasted less than a minute, but was effective in showcasing the many facets of the trumpet. “Moderato” was the most fanfare-like of the three movements, while “Lento” was quite lyrical and featured rather open, quartal tonalities. The final movement, “Allegretto,” was antiphonal, with the main motive being tossed about the ensemble. Both works would be welcomed additions to any ensemble’s library and were well performed by the Angelo State University Trumpet Ensemble