On Thursday, April 19th, the Jacobs School of Music will present A Spring Festival of Woodwinds, Brass and Percussion featuring the Concert Band, Symphonic Band, and Wind Ensemble. The concert, conducted by Eric M. Smedley, Jeffrey D. Gershman, and Stephen W. Pratt, will be held in the Musical Arts Center at 8:00 pm.
The concert will feature the music of guest composer Donald Grantham, with each ensemble performing one of his works, among others. Grantham is the recipient of numerous awards and prizes in composition, including the Prix Lili Boulanger, the Nissim/ASCAP Orchestral Composition Prize, First Prize in the Concordia Chamber Symphony’s Awards to American Composers, a Guggenheim Fellowship, three grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, three First Prizes in the NBA/William Revelli Competition, two First Prizes in the ABA/Ostwald Competition, and First Prize in the National Opera Association’s Biennial Composition Competition. His music has been praised for its “elegance, sensitivity, lucidity of thought, clarity of expression and fine lyricism” in a Citation awarded by the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. He resides in Austin, Texas and is Frank C. Erwin, Jr. Centennial Professor of Composition at the University of Texas at Austin.
Grantham works to be performed include Kentucky Harmony, a three-movement work based on folk tunes from Kentucky pioneer days. His Baron Cimetière Mambo will also be performed. This is a selection that is descriptive of a spirit famous in Voodoo lore. Also being performed is Grantham’s famous work, J’ai été au bal, which is based on Cajun dance tunes.
Composer David DeBoor Canfield, a resident of Bloomington, has contributed a brilliant and festive work, Symphonic Synthesis for Concert Band. Composed for, recorded, and premiered by the US Navy Band, this work is written to synthesize different moods and instrumental colors in the contemporary symphonic wind ensemble. The audience will hear the juxtaposition of classical and jazz, tonal and atonal, and spiky rhythmic passages interspersed with chorales and other calmer sections.
The rest of the concert includes works that celebrate the return of spring in some way, including the Borodin Polovtsian Dances, Molly on the Shore by Grainger, Dance of the Jesters by Tchaikovsky and Blue Lake Overture by John Barnes Chance.
Concert Band, Eric D. Smedley, Conductor
John Barnes Chance: Blue Lake Overture, David C. Woodley, Conductor
Grantham: Kentucky Harmony
Symphonic Band, Jeffrey D. Gershman, Conductor
Donald Grantham: Baron Cimetiere’s Mambo
Percy Grainger: Molly on the Shore
Pyotyr Tchaikovsky: Dance of the Jesters
Wind Ensemble, Stephen W. Pratt, Conductor
David DeBoor Canfield: Symphonic Synthesis for Concert Band
Donald Grantham: J’ai ete au bal
Alexander Borodin: Polovtsian Dances