The Woodwind and Brass Ensemble performed in the Rowe Arts building on Oct. 26. Each instrument group had their own setlist and were lead by different people. The atmosphere of the night was quiet as the crowd patiently waited for the first performance. Much like them, I was sitting there waiting and wondering how my imagination would play out when listening to the music. It is the most fun part whenever I see these types of concerts. My imagination runs wild, with the music providing the soundtrack to my mind.
The horn choir was under Christopher Griffin’s direction. They played “Allegro Moderato” and “Panis Angelicus.” Both are slow pieces of music that prepared you for the rest of the night. “Panis Angelicus” gave me the imagery of walking inside a castle with curiosity. As they reached the higher notes I imagined myself running down the halls with no sense of direction or care.
The Clarinet choir came next. Under the direction of Dr. Jessica Lindsey, they performed Jonathan Russel’s “Eleven.” Things picked up here, the music was faster and more technical which provided a sense of adventure of wherever you’re going.
The trombone section came next and they played David Wilborn’s “Excursions.” The first part, “Vistas” reminded me of World War II planes battling it out in the skies. The building tension in every note kept me on the edge of my seat and wondering what was the fate of some of the pilots. That tension was soon brought down with “Prayers and Rituals” before it was brought back with “Carnival.” The trombone section was my favorite part of the show. There was a level of excitement and pride in the way they have played that made it easy for me to immerse myself in.
Another favorite piece of mine was when the flute choir played Mozart’s “Marriage of Figaro.” The minute I heard first note, I immediately grinned. I couldn’t believe that they played it because it’s the song that I was most familiar with in the setlist. On top of that, they played with such precision that it sounded like it was straight from a playback of the recording.
To wrap up the night, the tuba quartet played “Die Bankeldangerlieder” (translated in German “The Song of the Bench Singers”) and “Jupiter from The Planets.” In a way, the tone and pace of the show came to a full circle. We went back to slower pieces that eased the audience after everything they had been through.
It was another solid performance by the woodwind and brass ensemble. It’s always a pleasure to see them come out and play. This was the first time I have seen a campus concert this semester and it was great to watch them again. It’s a great reminder of how our school has very talented musicians who deserve all the praise and support they can get.
If there was one thing I would like to have seen, it would have been all of them playing together. It was a bit strange to see each section come in and out after each set. It would be fantastic to see each section play their part to create something special when they are together.
I do implore people to come and watch them. They are not here just to entertain people; they have the potential to do something great in the future and it is beautiful to watch their talent being nurtured in front of your you very own eyes. Plus, it’s a great way to get familiar with classical music. While popular music of today can be fun and all, having these events can help open your mind to other genres of music.
Featured photo courtesy of Pixabay.