IU Wind Ensemble to perform at national college wind band convention

The Indiana University Wind Ensemble will perform at the College Band Directors National Association national conference in Nashville, Tenn., this Thursday evening, March 26. The performance will take place at 7:30 p.m. in Schermerhorn Symphony Center, the home of the Nashville Symphony Orchestra.

Stephen Pratt

Stephen Pratt

The IU Wind Ensemble is conducted by Stephen Pratt, Jacobs School of Music professor, and will feature Jacobs professor Jeff Nelsen as guest soloist performing The Glass Bead Game by James Beckel.

Nelsen is best known as the hornist of the Canadian Brass, with which he toured and recorded for eight years. As professor of horn at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, Nelsen teaches horn and chamber music. As a horn soloist, he has performed concerti with orchestra and given recitals on five continents. He has performed with dozens of orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, Houston and National symphonies, Philadelphia and Minnesota orchestras, and the Canadian and New York City Opera companies. He has held full-time positions in the Montreal, Vancouver and Winnipeg symphony orchestras.

The IU Wind Ensemble was selected, along with several other groups from across the nation, to perform at the national convention after a rigorous screening by a distinguished panel of musicians.

The concert will include music by two members of the Jacobs School composition faculty: Ra! by David Dzubay to open the concert and Jug Blues and Fat Pickin’ by Don Freund to bring the concert to a virtuosic conclusion. A brand new work by internationally known conductor and composer André Previn, Music for Wind Orchestra – No Strings Attached, will also be featured. The ensemble will also present the second performance of Rite of Passage arranged by Cliff Colnot. Colnot is a frequent guest conductor at the Jacobs School of Music and arranged the work for a performance by members of his Chicago Civic Orchestra, which premiered the work.

The IU Wind Ensemble holds a distinguished reputation for musical leadership in the wind band field. Recognized as one of the finest collegiate wind ensembles in the world, the ensemble is composed of some of the most advanced music majors from all areas of the Jacobs School of Music. The group performs a wide variety of the finest wind literature, including classics of the repertoire, chamber music for winds and contemporary works.

The ensemble has performed previously at all of the most important wind band national venues, including, in the last seven years, conventions held by the College Band Directors National Association, American Bandmasters Association and Music Educators National Conference.

Pratt teaches graduate wind conducting courses and is the chair of the Department of Bands/Wind Conducting at the Jacobs School. In demand as a guest conductor, clinician and adjudicator of wind bands and orchestras across the country, he is recipient of the Distinguished Service to Music medal awarded by Kappa Kappa Psi, the national collegiate band honorary organization. He has also been honored with the Outstanding Bandmaster award, Gamma chapter (Indiana) of Phi Beta Mu (1998), the Outstanding University Music Educator award, Indiana Music Educators Association (2001) and the Calvert Outstanding Music Educator Award (2014).

Pratt is a past president of the College Band Directors National Association North Central Division and past president of the Indiana Bandmasters Association. He is an elected member of the American Bandmasters Association as well as a former member of the executive board of the National Band Association and has been a member of the Jacobs School of Music faculty since 1984.

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Alumnus Trae Blanco declared finalist in The American Prize in Conducting – Band/Wind Ensemble Division

BlancoTrae Blanco, MM in Wind Conducting 2014, was declared a finalist in The American Prize in Conducting – Band/Wind Ensemble Division. The American Prize recognizes and celebrates excellence in the arts.

A student of Stephen Pratt, Blanco was a student at the Jacobs School of Music from 2013 to 2014 and is currently pursuing a doctorate in music at Arizona State University.

More info at www.theamericanprize.org/.

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Dale Hedding (BM ’86) Joins Arts Consulting Group

Dale-Hedding-3383041_220Nonprofit fundraising expert Dale C. Hedding (BM ’86) has joined Arts Consulting Group as vice president. Mr. Hedding will lead the firm’s growing revenue enhancement practice, working with arts and culture organizations throughout North America. Most recently, Mr. Hedding served as vice president of development of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.

Earlier in his career, Mr. Hedding served four years as principal trombone in the U.S. Air Force Band of New England. Mr. Hedding received his Bachelor of Music from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, and Master of Business Administration in Arts Administration from Binghamton University School of Management, State University of New York.

More Information Here:                 http://www.artsconsulting.com/pdf_acg_news/hedding_acg_release.pdf

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Stephen Pratt receives Music Educator Award, among other activities

prattStephen Pratt, professor of music and director of bands/wind conducting, was active during the 2013-14 academic year at a number of events off-campus.

In November, he was artist in residence at The University of Alabama, where he gave conducting lessons, gave several lectures and guest conducted the University of Alabama Wind Ensemble. In March, he was the conductor of the South Carolina All-State Honor Band in Greenville.

On May 17, he received the James B. Calvert Outstanding Music Educator Award at the concert of the Indiana Wind Symphony at the Palladium Concert Hall in Carmel, Ind. Also in May, he served on the adjudication/clinician panel at the 2014 Alberta Band Association Festival of Bands in Red Deer, Alberta, Canada.

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Jason H. Nam published in the Journal of the National Band Association

Jason H. Nam, Doctoral Wind Conducting student of Professor Stephen W. Pratt, was recently published in the Journal of the National Band Association (Vol. 54/Winter, 2014).

The publication is disseminated to band directors at all levels across the country, with a focus on current models and techniques in wind and percussion pedagogy, literature, and research. Nam’s article, entitled “The Mid-Twentieth Century Renaissance and the ‘American Symphony for Band,’” is one of the first to be published in the NBA Journal’s new section dedicated to peer reviewed research.

The article examines the implications of the American band symphonies written between the years 1949 and 1959, as well as the broader historical development of the symphony as a genre for the wind band. Additionally, the article illustrates the contrasting rationale behind composing a band symphony between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and the progress of the band as a viable medium for artistic expression.

Nam is pursuing the Doctor of Music degree in Wind Conducting where he serves as an associate instructor for the Jacobs School of Music Department of Bands. He is also currently serving as Associate Conductor for the Southern Indiana Wind Ensemble based out of Bloomington.

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New Copland Transcription to be Premiered by IU Wind Ensemble

richardsonThe Indiana University Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Prof. Stephen W. Pratt, will be premiering a new wind band transcription by Brett A. Richardson of Aaron Copland’s “Music for the Theatre” on April 8, 2014.

Completed with the express permission of the Aaron Copland Fund for Music and publisher Boosey & Hawkes, this transcription will mark the earliest work by Copland to be transcribed for wind band and represents the culmination of Richardson’s doctoral final project.

“Music for the Theatre” is set in five diverse movements for chamber wind ensemble and features various jazz inflections, blues-colored harmonies, and idioms derived from popular song.

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Director of Bands in residence at the University of Alabama

As part of the Endowed Chair artist in residency series at The University of Alabama, Stephen Pratt, Professor of Music and Chair of the Department of Bands/Wind Conducting, spent several days in November in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. During the residency he was guest conductor with the Alabama Wind Ensemble, gave several lectures and master classes, and worked with a number of graduate conducting students.


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Brett Richardson to Participate in Wind Conducting Research Study at the University of Georgia

brett richardsonBrett A. Richardson, Doctoral Wind Conducting student of Prof. Stephen W. Pratt, was recently invited to the University of Georgia’s Hugh Hodgson School of Music to serve as a participant in a research study on gesture in wind conducting. The project was led by Curran Garrett Prendergast, a doctoral student in Wind Conducting at the University of Georgia. As one of only four invited participants from across the country, Richardson was a guest conduct the University of Georgia Wind Symphony and participated in a series of interviews with the research team. The project took place on Monday, December 2, 2013.

Richardson is completing the Doctor of Music degree in Wind Conducting where he serves as an associate instructor for the Department of Bands. He also serves as the Resident Conductor for the Southern Indiana Wind Ensemble based out of Bloomington.


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Stephen Pratt Guest Conducting – 2013 Spring

prattStephen Pratt, Professor of Music and Director of Bands/Wind Conducting, was active during the 2013 spring semester at a number of events off-campus.

In February, he was a guest conductor at West Virginia University where he conducted the High School Honor Band and guest conducted the WVU Wind Ensemble. In March he was a guest clinician in the Conducting Workshop at the University of Redlands in California. In May he was the conductor of the North Carolina All-State Honor Band in Greensboro. In addition, in June he was the conductor of the Symphony Orchestra at the IU Summer Music Clinic in Bloomington.

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Music review: Musicians’ performance impressive

By Peter Jacobi H-T Reviewer | pjacobi@heraldt.com
June 28, 2013

The weather Wednesday night was absolutely awful, enough so to have the first of this year’s Summer Concert Band concerts moved indoors from the lawn of the Musical Arts Center. The storms might have discouraged a few folks from coming, but the true enthusiasts seemed to all be there, and they certainly expressed enthusiasm for what they heard.

But then, why not? The musicians assembled on the MAC stage performed extremely well, and they had a welcomed variety of pieces in their evening repertoire. Conductor Stephen Pratt fit 11 items into just over an hour, from overtures to marches, from show collections to bits of new compositions, the likes of which we hear during more formal wind concerts in the fall-winter-spring season. And throughout, he proved the maestro, offering interpretive sensitivity, calling for flexible and spirited response from his players, and maintaining praiseworthy control.

A Gershwin march, more specifically, the familiar “Strike Up the Band,” from the 1927 Broadway musical of that title, served to get matters underway with pizzazz, and a catchy 1893 march, “Northwind,” by W. Paris Chambers, had one’s feet moving in place at the end.

The in-between highlights were numerous, among them “Colonel Bogey,” written by the British march king, Kenneth Alford, and used prominently in the classic film, “The Bridge on the River Kwai.” A current IU Doctor of Music candidate, Benjamin Taylor, supplied Movement III from his recently completed work for band, “Trailing Clouds of Glory,” music craftily orchestrated, easy to listen to and sagaciously compressed for maximum impact; Pratt and the band performed it with breadth and gusto.

Cheers erupted after the 12-member clarinet section stood in place as a chorus of soloists to play Leroy Anderson’s capricious “Clarinet Candy,” a delightful exercise of tuneful fun requiring absolute precision ultimately in Indy-Car speed. Frank Ticheli’s affecting 1993 Cajun Folk Songs featured regional melodies that ranged from haunting to jaunty.

Also heard were a bombastic overture, “Millenium III,” by Alfred Reed, written in 1998 to foreshadow the arrival of the new millennium; “Chant and Jubilo,” a score, indeed, of chanting, then jubilation, by the late composer laureate of Arkansas, W. Francis McBeth; a rousing Balkan War-inspired 1912 march, “A Slavic Farewell,” by Vasilij Ivanovitj Agapkin; Glenn Osser’s “Beguine for Band,” honoring the old pop standard, “Begin the Beguine,” and a collection of ’60’s and ’70’s songs by Burt Bacharach, arranged by John Edmondson.

The concert covered extensive territory. The readings of its components by Pratt and his summer contingent were marked with authority and rich in sounds designed to please the ears.

Copyright: HeraldTimesOnline.com 2013

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