Sunday, December 19, 2010
I wish you a wonderful Holiday Season, regardless of the Holiday you keep. I'll be back in early January with a calendar of concerts for the beginning of 2011.
Until then, all the best to you and yours!
Sunday, December 12, 2010
The special guest this year is Randall Faust, Professor of Music at Western Illinois University, and host of last year's International Horn Society Symposium. The day begins with a Master Class taught by Dr. Faust at 11 AM. At 1 PM, all horn players will assemble for the rehearsal. Finally, the concert begins at 2 PM.
If you are in the Fox Valley, be sure to set some time aside for this wonderful event. For those of you in the rest of Southeastern Wisconsin, you might want to take a road trip to witness this wonderful concert. Horn players of all ages and skills playing the music of the season. A lot of fun and a great experience for horn players, young and old alike.
For more information, here is the Horns A Plenty Christmas web site link: http://hornsaplentychristmas.com.
Monday, December 6, 2010
For more information, see the web site: http://hornsaplentychristmas.com
Sunday, December 5, 2010
Who can resist the majestic sound of brass playing holiday music? Or maybe some jazzy woodwinds? What would your holiday season be without hearing Sleigh Ride, or Silent Night? All of this will be include in the concert. And the special arrangement of Silent Night, by Music Director Rick Kirby, has become a tradition on this concert. The performance will feature holiday music performed by smaller ensembles from within the band, as well as the full band.
Admission to this concert is $5, or is free with a donation of 5 non-perishable foods items that will be donated to the Waukesha Food Pantry. Examples of especially needed items include peanut butter, canned chili, stews and meats, canned vegetables, pastas, rice and soups.
Be sure to mark your calendar for the evening of December 10, and maybe pack up some food as well. You'll get a great deal, enjoy a fun concert, and do a great deal of good!
Sunday, November 28, 2010
And as promised, here is the Calendar of Holiday Concerts in December. Clicking on the band's name will take you to their web site for more information. Or print the page and tape it to your refrigerator door!
5 - Hartland Community Band, 3 PM, Holy Hill Basilica
10 - Waukesha Area Symphonic Band, 7:30 PM, Shattuck Auditorium, Carroll University
11 - Menomonee Falls Symphony, 7:30 PM, Sussex Hamilton Fine Arts Center
12 - Milwaukee American Legion Band, 3 PM, South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center
19 - Milwaukee Festival Brass, 3 PM, Wisconsin Lutheran College
19 - Lakeshore Symphonic Band, 3 PM, Holy Hill Basilica
Sunday, November 21, 2010
First the reminder: be sure to attend the Knightwind Ensemble concert at 3 PM today, November 21, at Wisconsin Lutheran College. I'll be selling the tickets in the lobby, so stop by and say hello.
Second is the wish: I wish you all a wonderful, peaceful, and happy Thanksgiving Holiday. We have so much to be thankful for here in the Milwaukee area. Sometimes life moves so quickly that we forget the wonderful things we do have. Let's reflect a bit this holiday about all the blessings we have and not concentrate on the things we'd like to have.
Next week's post is the calendar of Holiday concerts, ready for your refrigerator door!
Sunday, November 14, 2010
Don't forget the concert by the Waukesha Area Symphonic Band at Carroll University at 7:30 PM, today, November 14.
And be sure to attend next week's concert by the Knightwind Ensemble, at 3 PM at Wisconsin Lutheran College. Be sure to visit the Knightwind web site (www.knightwind.org) and print the page with the concert preview. Bring it to the concert for $1 off the adult ticket price for everyone in your party. (Sorry, but the Senior and Student ticket price is as low as we can go already. We just cannot discount those tickets any further.)
And when you buy your tickets to the Knightwind Ensemble concert, be sure to say hello to Yours Truly, who will be taking care of all the details in the lobby during the performance, including selling the tickets.
Sunday, November 7, 2010
The concert will also include a fanfare by Julie Giroux, the famous Suite of Old American Dances by Robert Russell Bennett, and an anthology of Leroy Anderson tunes. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the door. For more information or to pre-order tickets, please call 262-370-6129.
One neat piece of trivia I learned about this concert is that, performing in the band for this concert, is a husband, wife, and son. The Eisenmann family will be well represented in the ranks of the musicians on that evening. That's one of the great things about community music groups: the love of music can be passed down through the generations, and we all benefit from that love.
And the Packers have a Bye week. No game to get in the way of concert attendance! Hope to see you there!
Sunday, October 31, 2010
And here is some news from the Racine Concert Band that might help you with your Christmas shopping. The Business Manager of the Racine Band, and former Music Director Del Esich, has written a book on the history of the Racine Band. The book is called And The Band Played On. He traces the beginnings of the band back to the 1850's and discusses the contributions of Henry and Fred Schulte in the 20's through the 40's. Of course, he outlines the years he was at the helm, including the band's performance with Barbra McNair in 1987 at the Grand Dedication of Racine's Festival Hall, and the awarding of the Sudler Silver Scroll to the Racine Concert Band by the John Phillip Sousa Foundation in 1995. The band is one of the best in the nation with the history to show for it.
It is a fascinating read. If you are interested in community bands, this book is a must for your library. It is available at Wilson's Coffee Shop in Racine: 3306 Washington Avenue, 262-634-6611. Give them a call or stop by for a coffee or tea when you pick up your copy. Now, in the interest of full disclosure, some of the photographs used in the book were taken by yours truly. But that is not the reason to buy the book. OK, maybe it is a small reason...
Sunday, October 24, 2010
This concert for young people will feature a number of works as examples of the essence of music, and the process of creating it. Included on the program will be some selections from Moussorgsky's Pictures At An Exhibition, Richard Wagner's opera Die Miestersinger, and the Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture. Some great music and a lot of fun. And maybe some learning as well.
As a special treat, students who are interested can come up on the stage and sit in with the Orchestra during the performance. For that young aspiring musician, that can be a great thrill.
For more information on the concert, including ticket purchases, please check the Menomonee Falls Symphony Orchestra's web site: http://my.execpc.com/~regent/mfso.htm
Sunday, October 17, 2010
First, here's some background information in case you are not familiar with the group. The Milwaukee Festival Brass is a British Style Brass Band (see their web site at http://www.mfbrass.org/ for more information on that). Besides using all brass instruments (and slightly different ones at that), British Brass Bands perform in competitions, and in the autumn the winners of the regional competitions converge on London for the British Brass Band National Championships, held at the Royal Albert Hall.
Dr. Backhaus has chosen two pieces for the program that were used to test the participating bands. The first one is from 1952, and is entitled Fantasia: In Switzerland, composed by Eric Ball. The second piece, which tested bands in 2009 in competitions throughout Europe, Australia and New Zealand, is called Torchbearer and it uses a theme from the music of Eric Ball, but is devilishly hard to play. It was written by one of the Brass' favorite composers, Peter Graham.
The program also features the Brass' lead Euphonium, Dave Meyer, as well as music from Fiddler On The Roof. It should be a lot of fun...the MFB concerts always are.
Tickets are $12 for adults, $9 for Seniors and Students, and can be purchased at the door. For more information, visit http://www.mfbrass.org/.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
Music Director Donna Kummer has chosen a mix of musical styles. From Broadway and the Movies comes music from The Sound of Music and from The Lion King. The trombone section is featured in a fun selection called Slippery Slides. Every children's concert needs a classical warhorse, and in this concert you'll hear Rossini's William Tell Overture.
I have to mention that Tosa Band will perform one of my favorite pieces: Norman Dello Joio's Scenes From The Louvre. The piece is a five movement work depicting the development of the Louvre during the Renaissance. It was originally written for the 1964 NBC television series on the Louvre, and it won the Emmy for outstanding television score that year. The band version was premiered in March of 1966 by the Baldwin-Wallace College Wind Ensemble conducted by the composer. It is a wonderful piece of music depicting not only the wonderful works of art within that museum, but the stateliness of the museum itself. I'm sure you will enjoy it, just as I am sure that the band will be challenged by it!
Finally, there has to be some scary music. Maestra Kummer has chosen two pieces to fill the bill: Thrillers and Chillers and Ghosts in the Graveyard. Just in time to get you in the mood for the upcoming weekend!
Snacks and drinks will be served after the concert for little goblins looking for a treat! Bigger goblins can enjoy them as well.
Tickets can be purchased in the lobby before the concert. Don't miss this one, it is guaranteed to be a lot of fun!
Sunday, October 3, 2010
Two favorite orchestral transcriptions will be included in the program: the movements Mars, The Bringer of War and Jupiter, The Bringer of Jollity from Gustav Holst masterpiece, The Planets. It has been many years since Knightwind performed either of these two movements, and yet they remain a favorite of both the audience and the musicians.
It would not be a Knightwind Ensemble performance without some music from a contemporary composer. For the November concert, that composer is Martin Ellerby, and the music is his Dreamscapes. The music is impressions of areas outside reality, including Shangri-La and Xanado. The Ensemble has performed Mr. Ellerby's Paris Sketches in November of 2005.
Also on the program is Aspen Jubilee from composer Ron Nelson. His aim with the music was to show "...the stupendous beauty of the Rockies, in general, of blinding sunlight, of snow-covered peaks; of the frontier spirit of old Aspen with its brash, funny dynamism, its corny ragtag Fourth of July parades and firework displays."
You can reach the Knightwind Web Site at www.knightwind.org. By printing out the page for the next concert, you can receive a discount on concert tickets. Be sure to check it out. And be sure to mark your calendar for November 21. The concert will be a good one!
Sunday, September 26, 2010
I learned recently that Don can add another city to the list hosting Horns A Plenty Christmas: Washington DC. The date is Saturday December 4 and the location is the National Gallery of Art. Rehearsal begins at 12:30 PM with the concert to be held at 2 PM. All horn players are welcome to participate. The music is easy and the cost is low. Don's goal is a minimum of 100 horn players. And there is a rumor that the horn sections from some of the Service Bands will be attending. WOW!
The details will be posted on the Horns A Plenty Christmas web site once they are all worked out. But I bet there are a number of Milwaukee area horn players that are thinking ROAD TRIP!
Sunday, September 19, 2010
Their annual Concerto Competition auditions will be held on Saturday February 5. More details will come after the first of the year.
And for those of you in Wauwatosa, the first concert of the Wauwatosa Community Band will celebrate Halloween! Music will include Thrillers and Chillers and Ghosts in the Graveyards. More traditional selections will include The William Tell Overture and music from The Lion King. Unfortunately, the date has not been finalized. Once it is, I'll get it posted.
Sunday, September 12, 2010
However, I did get some news on the November concert by the Knightwind Ensemble. The new Music Director, Dr. Erik Janners, will be programming two movements from The Planets by Gustav Holst: Mars and Jupiter. Just based on that, it will be a great concert!
Sunday, September 5, 2010
September - No concerts
17 - Lakeshore Symphonic Band, 3pm, Cedarburg Performing Arts Center
24 - Milwaukee Festival Brass, 3 PM, Wisconsin Lutheran College
24 - Milwaukee American Legion Band, 3 PM, South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center
30 - Menomonee Falls Symphony, 7:30 PM, Sussex Hamilton Fine Arts Center
11 - Milwaukee American Legion Band, 10 AM, Chapel at Zablocki Hospital
14 - Waukesha Area Symphonic Band, 7:30 PM, Shattuck Auditorium, Carroll University
21 - Knightwind Ensemble, 3 PM, Wisconsin Lutheran College
5 - Hartland Community Band, 3 PM, Holy Hill Basilica
10 - Waukesha Area Symphonic Band, 7:30 PM, Shattuck Auditorium, Carroll University
11 - Menomonee Falls Symphony, 7:30 PM, Sussex Hamilton Fine Arts Center
12 - Milwaukee American Legion Band, 3 PM, South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center
19 - Milwaukee Festival Brass, 3 PM, Wisconsin Lutheran College
19 - Lakeshore Symphonic Band, 3 PM, Holy Hill Basilica
January - No concerts
11, 12 - Menomonee Falls Symphony, 6:30 Dinner and 7:30 concert, Silver Spring Country Club
6 - Lakeshore Symphonic Band, 3 PM, Cedarburg Performing Arts Center
3 - Knightwind Ensemble, 3 PM, South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center
3 - Milwaukee Festival Brass, 3 PM, Wisconsin Lutheran College
17 - Waukesha Area Symphonic Band, 7:30 PM, Shattuck Auditorium, Carroll University
15 - Lakeshore Symphonic Band, 3 PM, Cedarburg Performing Arts Center
15 - Milwaukee American Legion Band, 3 PM, South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center
21 - Menomonee Falls Symphony, 7:30, Sussex Hamilton Fine Arts Center
30 - Knightwind Ensemble, 1 PM, Milwaukee County Zoo
4 - Milwaukee Festival Brass, 3 PM, Wisconsin Lutheran College
If you have dates for other community groups, please email them to me and I will add them to the list. Please remember that this blog is geared for adult, community oriented (volunteer) groups. I cannot post concert dates for professional or childrens groups. Thanks for you cooperation.
Sunday, August 29, 2010
Sunday: There is one group rehearsing on Sunday evening, the Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Concert Band. The band is always looking for new members. If an audition is needed, it is in order to determine where a person would sit. The group performs a more traditional concert band repertoire, and performs most of the year. The group is lead by conductor Karen Lippert. Unfortunately the group does not have a web site at this time. If you're interested in more information, please send me an email and I'll forward it to the conductor.
Monday: There is a community orchestra rehearsing on Monday evenings, the Menomonee Falls Symphony, directed by Mike Kamenski. Auditions are required. The group performs traditional symphony orchestra works. To get more information, see the web site: http://my.execpc.com/~regent/mfso.htm.
Tuesday: There are three groups rehearsing on Tuesday evening: the Wauwatosa Community Band, the Waukesha Area Symphonic Band, and the Milwaukee Festival Brass, the area's only British style brass band.First, the Wauwatosa Community Band is sponsored in part by the Wauwatosa Parks and Rec department and welcomes any and all players. Their concerts are lighter in nature with some more serious works for band. They also have a jazz ensemble, with many players performing in both groups. See their web site for more information: http://www.arcfile/com/tosaband/
Also on Tuesday is the Waukesha Area Symphonic Band. WASB performs more serious works and more difficult works for band. Auditions are required. Their web site is http://www.wasband.org/.
Finally on Tuesday is the Milwaukee Festival Brass directed by Dr. Patricia Backhaus, one of my favorite groups. If you are a brass or percussion player, this group offers something different from most community groups as the instrumentation is that of a traditional British Brass Band. The music is a wide variety from Pops favorites to very difficult brass band competition pieces. Auditions are required. See the web site for more info: http://www.mfbrass.org/.
Wednesday: There are three groups rehearsing on Wednesday evening: the Sudler Award Winning Knightwind Ensemble, the Lakeshore Symphonic Band, and the Milwaukee American Legion Band. The Legion band is modeled on the traditional patriotic military band. Not sure if they require auditions. Please see the web site for more information: http://milwakeeamericanlegionband.com/home.htm
The Lakeshore Symphonic Band is located in Ozaukee County in Grafton. Their performances are at the Cedarburg Arts Center. You can get more information from their web site: http://www.lakeshoreband.com/.
The Knightwind Ensemble also rehearses on Wednesday evening. The Ensemble specializes in performing newer works for band and wind symphony. Their web site has the list of the pieces performed in concert over the past 10 years plus, and it includes international award winning pieces. Auditions are required, and the band will add you to the waiting list if the section is full. See the web site for more information: http://www.knightwind.org/. The Ensemble received the Sudler Silver Scroll from the John Philip Sousa Foundation in December of 2005. Of the tens of thousands of community bands eligible for the award, the Knightwind Ensemble is one of 37 groups to EVER receive the award. Quite the accomplishment!
Thursday: Three groups rehearse on Thursday evening. The first is the Milwaukee Concert Band. As they do not have a web site, it is difficult to get information about the group. However, if you are interested in a Thursday rehearsal, send me an email and I will make sure that the director receives it.
Also rehearsing on Thursday is the Suburban Concert Band in West Allis, and the Greendale Village Band. The Suburban Concert Band's site is at http://www.suburbanconcertband.bravehost.com/. This group, like Tosa Band, also has a jazz ensemble.
The Greendale Village Band does not have a web site. However, the Wisconsin Music Group Band list at http://my.execpc.com/~regent/band.htm has contact information for them.
And that wraps up the list of community music groups in the Milwaukee area. If I missed one that you know of, please email me or add a comment to the post. I'll be sure to add it to the list.
Sunday, August 22, 2010
I will be working to assemble the calendar of concerts for the 2010-2011 season for the community bands in the area. I hope to publish the calendar on Sunday September 5. Next week is a list of the community bands in the area, for those who would like to join a group and play.
Sunday, August 15, 2010
On August 15, the band welcomes mezzo soprano Allison Hull, who will perform tunes by George and Ira Gershwin. And Eric Weiss will solo on Leroy Anderson's Trumpeters Lullaby.
The music of the Big Bands will be featured on August 22, featuring the jazz stylings of Jeannie Hatfield, former Miss Racine and Miss Wisconsin.
Finally, on August 29, soprano Aimee Miller joins the band to perform Bless This House and Who Will Buy My Lavender. Saxophonist Margaret Schwingle will perform Come Sunday by Duke Ellington.
Don't miss these final concerts in the 2010 Summer Series by the Racine Concert Band.
Sunday, August 8, 2010
The first is Wednesday August 18 at 7:30 PM at the Band Shell in Oconomowoc. The other concert is the next evening, Thursday August 19 at 7:00 PM in Nixon Park in Hartland.
Then the Hartland Community Band takes a break until their Christmas Concert in December at Holy Hill. More on that later.
For all of you in the western suburbs, be sure to take in one of these two concerts. And for more information, see the band's web site: http://hartlandcommunityband.com
Sunday, August 1, 2010
Unfortunately I have not been able to find the list of the different bands that will be performing that afternoon. If I can get that information, I'll post it as soon as I can. UPDATE 8/3: The poster for the event can be found at this link: www.wsmamusic.org/programs/marching_band/documents/MBposter.pdf
However, a Sunday afternoon with marching bands and cream puffs seems like a day in heaven to me. Be sure to mark you calendar. If you'd like to order tickets, here is the link: www.wistatefair.com/2010_wsf/mainstage.html
And if you are not able to attend the state fair that day, be sure to support the school bands performing throughout every day at the fair. Those musicians are the future of our community bands and orchestras.
Sunday, July 25, 2010
MCM: What is your favorite: symphonic band piece? orchestral piece? popular piece? other?
EJ: This is like asking me to name my favorite star. I love them all! OK, OK, if you want me to pick just one piece for a favorite wind band work it would be...Russian Christmas Music by Alfred Reed. There are many others that I love, of course, but that is a work that, to me, will never go out of style - it will always powerfully affect students, performers, and audience members every time. Favorite Orchestral work: Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Among all the wonderful musical elements, and its colossal position at the top of the cannon of western art music, I also just love that the various companies who got together to standardize CD technology in the 1990s could only agree that the new CD format should contain a full performance of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony - the average performance being 74 minutes in length. If you ever wondered where the 74 minutes came from, there you go! For another favorite piece - gosh, I don't know. I know what I like in ANY piece of music, though - interesting melodic and harmonic lines, and the chance for players to really dig into the music and play. That is how I decide what I like in virtually all music, I guess.
MCM: During your career, did you play in any pop or rock groups?
EJ: Yes...can I just leave it at that? No, I guess not. OK fine. All through my high school years, I was the drummer and lead singer for a rock band which went by the hideous name of Burnt Toast and Jam. We did cover tunes mostly, and some original tunes in our later years (17 and 18!). Yes, I was the lead singer, no kidding. I was the Phil Collins of that band. It was a lot of fun and I wouldn't trade it for anything. However, last time I moved, I found some old recordings of that band, and after listening for about 2 minutes decided that those tapes should be permanently misplaced!
MCM: American or Canadian?
EJ: American - I guess the better phraseology would be United Statesian. To say one is American does not narrow it down very much - North or South American? I was born in San Antonia Texas and grew up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. The only time I spent in Canada was three years I spent there in my first teaching position from 2001 to 2004. One of the things I would say, however, is that living outside the US is a very eye opening experience and one I would recommend to anyone. Even simply being in Canada, which most US citizens feel is the 51st state or something, you get a very different perspective of the world, and on what other countries think of the US. Very enlightening.
MCM: What do you enjoy most that is not music?
EJ: I love dogs - my wife and I have 2 dogs - a German Shepherd mix named Jesse, and a Dachsund named Oscar (Oscar the wiener dog). I also very much enjoy sports - football and college basketball (of course) and cycling. Yes, I am a Packers fan in case anyone is wondering and I am a true Packers fan. I started rooting for them when I was a kid in the UP of Michigan, when the quarterbacks were Lynne Dickey and David Whitehurst!
MCM: What are your goals for the first few years of your tenure as Music Director of the Knightwind Ensemble?
EJ: My goals for Knightwind are to: 1) bring more exposure to this wonderful ensemble, and 2) continue to select and perform wind band music of the highest quality to challenge the players. Sounds pretty simple, right? I would like to see if the Knightwind Ensemble can get invited to the Wisconsin Music Conference in Madison, and I would like to look into putting together a CD for sale by the group. Lastly, I plan on talking with the Board of Directors about the possibility of some sort of holiday pops concert - it seems like a natural event that we are missing out on as a part of our calendar.
There you have it! Q and A with Dr. Erik Janners, Director of Music at Marquette University and the newly appointed Music Director of the Knightwind Ensemble.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Milwaukee Community Music: How did you first get involved with music?
Dr. Erik Janners: My mom and dad enrolled me in Suzuki violin at the age of 4 or 5 - I don't remember my exact age. I did violin, guitar, and piano on and off before finally deciding on percussion in about grade 8.
MCM: What convinced you that music was a calling and not a hobby?
EJ: I loved to play, I loved to perform, I was never bored by it, and I was continually challenged by music. That last point, really, is what is still true today - there is always something new, something more to learn or to get out of a piece. I also really enjoy the interpersonal aspect of music making - as a player I much prefer chamber music to solo work, and as a conductor I love the interaction between the ensemble and the conductor. The special dynamic that it brings to what we do is a constant source of energy and fascination for me.
MCM: What music other than "symphonic" or "classical" are you especially interested in, and why?
EJ: Jazz music or rock music up until 1990. I find much of what is played on the radio today as "pop" or "rock" to be utterly vacuous - the performers did not even write their own lyrics or their own music, and they are sampling someone else's guitar riff or something - usually from that time in the 1970's or 1980's when hard rock music had melody (Queen, Van Halen, etc.). I find much of the current pop music unlistenable for that very reason. Jazz, of course, is an art form all its own, and is a lot of fun to play and to direct as a conductor. Jazz is one of those musical styles where the more you know about the style, the more you like it. Of course, for many people who know nothing about jazz, they like it less.
MCM: What is on your iPod or CD Player?
EJ: Van Halen, Queen, Led Zepplin, Dave Matthews Band, Bela Fleck, Miles Davis (Sketches of Spain album is a must have for every musician), Charles Mingus, John Coltrane. Unless I'm listening to wind band music - I have a collection of over 2500 CDs of wind band music.
MCM: Things sometimes go wrong at concerts. Can you share an interesting or amusing "something gone wrong"?
EJ: For one that involves me personally, I remember a time when I was still an undergraduate and we were at the dress rehearsal for a concert. I think we were doing the 1st, 4th, and 5th movements of something and the 5th movement was the slow movement. So at the dress the conductor told us to be ready to perform the movements in the order 1/5/4 so we would end on a fast movement rather than a slow. At the concert we finished the 1st movement and all of us percussionists continued to sit quietly in the back as the 5th movement was next and involved no percussion - all of us that is except for the young lady playing cymbals. She got up and walked to the cymbals. None of us noticed right away - well, the 4th movement if it HAD been next, began with an ff cymbal crash, and so this girl picks up the cymbals and WHAM!!!!! Plays the loudest solo cymbal crash ever to start a slow and lyrical movement. We all forgot to tell her about the switch - she had missed the dress rehearsal. The conductor, to his everlasting credit, did not stop and kept right on going with the slow movement. He was, however, turning purple - not from anger but rather from trying to hold back his laughter, as we all were as well. The young lady, to her credit, stood there holding the cymbals high in the air, letting the sound die away, as if it was the most natural thing in the world, and the composer had written his slow movement that way. Needless to say, the rest of us percussionists got an earful from that cymbal player after the concert, for forgetting to tell her about that change.
Questions 6 to 10 are next week.
Sunday, July 11, 2010
The Racine Band has a long history of free concerts and quality performances. They were a key part of the centennial celebration for the City of Racine, and they were awarded the Sudler Silver Scroll by the John Phillip Sousa Foundation. And, as a person who has seen many performances by the group, they are very enjoyable.
This Sunday's performance (the 11th) includes a trumpet solo by the Director Mark Eichner, a clarinet duet, and the ever popular Light Cavalry Overture. And, of course, every concert ends with a march by John Phillip Sousa.So, for the rest of the summer, you have another option instead of reruns on TV or housework. Enjoy the summer concert series by the Racine Concert Band.
UPDATE July 12: Here is a list of the guests that will perform with the Racine Concert Band this summer:
July 18 - Greg Berg from WGDT radio will sing an aria from The Marriage of Figaro as well as some popular songs.
July 25 - Featuring a saxophone quartet and an oboe soloist
August 1 - The annual children's concert featuring Michael Snider narrating Casey At the Bat
August 8 - Featuring flute and alto sax soloists
August 15 - Mezzo soprano Allison Hull from UW-Parkside will sing some Gershwin standards
August 22 - Will feature the music of the Big Bands
August 29 - Soprano Aimee Miller will sing a number of selections and another saxophone feature
Sunday, July 4, 2010
For those of you near Greenfield, you may want to take in their 4th of July Parade. Their parade line up includes the Wisconsin Badger Band. While it's not the entire group, the Badgers will be there with the best pep band music in the world. And to top it off, at the end of the parade in Konkel Park, about 1:30, the Badgers will perform the famous 5th Quarter. So join in the fun, clap along, and maybe even do the Chicken Dance!
For those of you in and around Racine, the Racine Concert Band begins their summer concert series on the 4th. More information on that series soon.
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Dr. Janners comes to Milwaukee from St. Xavier University in Chicago, and the University of Regina in Saskatchewan, Canada. At both of those Universities, he created conducting workshops to provide further conducting training opportunities to high school teachers and music students. In Canada and at Marquette, he expanded the band programs to two bands and founded University Wind Ensembles. And if that isn't enough, while in Saskatchewan, he created a television show entitled For The Love Of Music, which featured the music of concert bands and wind ensembles.
At Marquette, Dr. Janners conducts the Wind Ensemble, Jazz Ensemble, and Pep Band, all the while supervising the overall Music Program. He also teaches courses in the University's Music Minor program, including music theory, conducting, and music history. He is a published author and has served as a featured clinician, not only at state music conferences, but also the Midwest Clinic.
In a future post, I'll do a Q and A session with Dr. Janners. If you have questions you'd like to ask, send them to the blog email address: email@example.com. I'll add them to my questions, and we can inundate Dr. Janners together!
Sunday, June 20, 2010
The concert begins with a small Dance Band performing standards, just to get you in the mood for an old fashioned band concert in the park. Then the entire concert band will perform one of their traditional patriotic concerts. No one follows that formula of programming more than the Milwaukee American Legion Band.
The concert is a part of the Chill On The Hill series, sponsored by the Bay View Neighborhood Association. Food vendors will be there for your snacking enjoyment. Their series is always a nice way to spend a pleasant summer evening.
So, pack your lawn chairs and your cooler and come to Humboldt Park, in Milwaukee's Bay View Neighborhood to hear a Milwaukee tradition: a summer concert by the Milwaukee American Legion Band. See you there on the 29th.
Sunday, June 13, 2010
- June 24, 7 PM at Atwater Park featuring Music from the Movies
- July 4 at 6:30 PM as a part of the Shorewood 4th of July Celebration, A Red White and Blue Spectacular
- July 15 at 7 PM at Atwater Park featuring a Salute to the Music of the Big Bands
Atwater Park is just north of Capitol Drive on Lake Drive. Street parking can sometimes fill up, so best to get there a little bit early and have your pick of the lawn. Remember to bring a chair or blanket for a comfortable seat.
If there is music you would like the Shorewood Concert Band to play, send your request to this email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. And for more information, you can also check the blog of the President of the Shorewood Concert Band at this link for more information: http://capnfrank.blogspot.com/. He tells me that his blog will include pictures, videos, and previews of upcoming concerts, so check it out!
Sunday, June 6, 2010
- June 25 - The first summer concert at Nixon Park in Hartland at 7 PM
- June 27 - The band performs on a bandwagon through Hartland beginning at 1 PM
- July 12 - A joint concert with the Fort Atkinson Community Band at the band shell in Barrie Park in Fort Atkinson at 7:30
- August 18 - A special performance at the Band Shell in Oconomowoc at 8 PM
- August 19 - The final summer concert at Nixon Park in Hartland at 7 PM
If you are in the area, be sure to look them up this summer. Sounds like a lot of fun.
And for those who like to plan ahead, the Hartland Community Band Christmas Concert at Holy Hill is set for December 5 at 3 PM.
Sunday, May 30, 2010
This year, the Band begins the entertainment in the park at 12:30. It's still a bit early so I do not yet have a concert preview. As soon as I get info from the Director, Dr. Patricia Backhaus, I'll post it. But Dr. Pat's concerts are always fun and she prepares her groups well.
And if you've never had Rupena's chicken, you are in for a treat!
Atwater Park is at the corner of Lake Drive and Capitol Drive. But be aware that Capitol Drive is under construction and you might run into delays. If you are coming from the south, best to take Hampton Avenue east to Lake Drive and then go north. Similarly, if you are coming from the north, take Silver Spring to lake Drive and go south.
And if you take in the concert, stop by and say hello...I'll be there with a red Wisconsin Badger Band baseball cap!
Sunday, May 23, 2010
His Eye on the Sparrow features long time MFB member Brian Bolling on Flugelhorn. A trio of concert master Tom Traugott, soprano cornetist Dave Magoon, and Dave Mayer on Euphonium perform the World Premiere arrangement of The Prayer. Joshua Swings the Battle is a great piece by Stephen Bulla and will feature Andrew Sowatzke on Trumpet. Andrew is one of the members of the Milwaukee Festival Youth Brass, and is a student at Waukesha South High School.
The feature piece for the concert is Crusade by Reiks Van Der Velde. It is a programmatic work telling the story of a young man who leaves home to fight for his religion, but also in search of fame and glory. This may be the most difficult piece the MFB has programmed. Should be a good one.
Tickets are $12 for adults, $9 for Seniors and Students and can be purchased at the door. Be sure to leave plenty of extra time to get there because parking will be at a premium because of a graduation ceremony. The MFB has made arrangements for off-site parking and transportation to the concert hall. Click here for more information.
Sunday, May 16, 2010
First up is the Wauwatosa Community Band. They are a part of the Memorial Day observance for the City of Wauwatosa. It will be held at Longfellow Middle School on the corner of 76th and North Avenue beginning at 10 AM. The band will provide patriotic music to accompany the ceremonies. See the Tosa Band site for more information.
In the afternoon, the Knightwind Ensemble will present its 21st Annual Memorial Day Pops Concert in the Peck Welcome Center at the Zoo at 1 PM. Besides some light classics, the Ensemble will perform music of Broadway, including selections from Les Miserables and the Overture to Candide by Leonard Bernstein. Of course, there will be a march or two. And the concert will conclude with the annual Salute To The Armed Forces. The concert is free with your Zoo admission. Click here for Zoo information.
Later in the afternoon at 5 PM, the Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Concert Band will perform a concert observing Memorial Day at the War Memorial Center downtown. The program will include light classics, show tunes and marches. If your day is busy early on, this might be a nice way to end the weekend. Here is more information on the concert.
And be sure, however you spend your weekend, to spend some time on Monday May 31 honoring our veterans, especially those who gave the ultimate sacrifice. It is because of their sacrifice that we have our freedom.
Sunday, May 9, 2010
The Hartland Community Band performs during the summer, so this is a bit early in the season for those folks. They'll be providing patriotic music for the ceremonies. If you are going to be in the area, be sure to take in the program, and enjoy the music of the Hartland Community Band. For more information, see the web site: www.veteransbelltower.com.
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Just a word about the Racine Concert Band...the group is best known for their Summer Concert Series at the Racine Zoo on Sunday evenings. That series has been going for a very long time. The Racine Concert Band (RCB) was recognized by none other than the John Phillip Sousa Foundation as one of the best Community Bands in North America, when it awarded the band its Sudler Silver Scroll. That is a true honor as only the very best community bands receive that award.
So, be sure to see the Racine Concert Band with the Case High School Band on the 20th at 7:00 PM. And be sure to mark your Sunday evenings for Summer Concerts by RCB beginning on Sunday July 4th. What a way to kick off the concert season!
Sunday, April 25, 2010
The Menomonee Falls Symphony Orchestra presents National Treasures on Saturday May 8 at 7:30 PM in the Hamilton Fine Arts Center in Sussex. Featured on the program are the First and Second Place winners of the MFSO Young Artist Competition, harpist Christina Brier and violinist Ari Lipchik.
The program begins with the Sebelius masterpiece Finlandia, a treasure of Finland. The first half concludes with the performances of the soloists. Unfortunately, I do not know the works that will be performed by the soloists (not much help, I know). The concert concludes with the Dvorak Symphony #9, From The New World, one of our national treasures.
Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for Seniors, and $6 for Students and can be purchased at the door. For more information, you can visit their web site: http://my.execpc.com/~regent/mfso.htm.
The MFSO just recently moved their rehearsals and concerts to the Hamilton Fine Arts Center in Sussex. The hall is wonderful for concerts, and the MFSO sounds very full and balanced there. When the MFSO played at the middle school in Menomonee Falls, the sound was not nearly as clear and full. They have found a new home for their concerts and we are the benefactors: better sounding concerts by a quality group. See you there!
Sunday, April 18, 2010
Also, if you are in the Fox Valley, the Oshkosh Horn Choir performs on Tuesday April 20 at 7 PM in the concert hall of the Music Building. The program includes classical favorites arranged for Horn Choir including Procession of the Nobles, and some movie music from Titanic. The best part is that the concert is free.
Now on to the concert preview. The Wauwatosa Community Band presents an evening of Patriotic Music on Tuesday May 4th at 7:30 PM in the auditorium of Longfellow Middle School, corner of 76th and North Avenue. Music Director Donna Kummer has chosen some favorites just in time for Memorial Day.
The feature piece on the program is an evergreen band classic: Gustav Holst's Second Suite in F. This suite is based on English folk songs, and is one of the cornerstone pieces of modern band music. For those of you who are not familiar, I suggest you attend the concert just to hear the last movement of this suite. Holst wanted to have two tunes played on top of each other, and he got that wish in the fourth movement when he juxtaposed the Fantasy on the Dargason and Greensleeves. The effect is wonderful.
Also on the program is Their Finest Hour by John Cacavas, George M. Cohan's Star Spangled Salute!, God Bless America, and The Ultimate Patriotic Sing-Along. Better warm up those vocal chords!
Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the door. Students and Seniors are $3. The concerts are always a lot of fun, so if you haven't heard Tosa Band yet, this would be a great concert to attend. And if you have heard Tosa Band, then you know that this will be a fun evening.
Sunday, April 11, 2010
Featured on the program is clarinetist Sabrina Pruszka, the winner of the WASB 2010 Concerto Competition earlier this year. Sabrina is a Senior at Franklin High School and is studying with Linda Jones at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music. She is also a member of both the UW-Milwaukee Youth Wind Ensemble, and the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra. She will perform the final movement (Rondo) from Carl Maria von Weber's Concerto Number 1.
Also on the program is Luminescence by David Biedenbender, the Adagio of Samuel Barber, and a Roger Cichy piece that I am not familiar with: Bugs. (Looks like a fun piece with movements entitled Dragonfly and Army Ants!)
The Waukesha Works For People is an annual concert event produced by WASB to help support other charities in and around Waukesha. Enjoy a wonderful concert and help support ACAP. (And besides, you don't want to miss music from the Star Wars Trilogy also on the program...)
Sunday, April 4, 2010
The Choir is made up of french horn students studying with Dr. Atwell as well as volunteers from the community. The quality of the group is very good and Dr. Atwell attracts a lot of very good community players from all over eastern Wisconsin, coming from both the Milwaukee and Green Bay areas, as well as the Fox Valley.
If you've never heard a choir of french horns playing classical and popular music, I suggest you attend this concert. You will enjoy it immensely!
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Concert Band, in conjunction with Wisconsin Lutheran High School, welcome the Dallas Brass on Sunday April 25th. The Brass will perform in the High School Auditorium beginning at 6 PM. Wisconsin Lutheran High School is on 84th Street, just south of Bluemound Road.
Unfortunately, there are not a lot of details available at this time. I have heard rumors of a possible master class, but those are only rumors. The information I have been able to confirm is that tickets will be $15 and are available at the door.
However, the Dallas Brass is a top notch group and the cost is very low. Having them here in Milwaukee is a treat you don't want to miss. As I get more information confirmed, I will post it. Until then, mark April 25th on your calendar!
Also, don't forget this Tuesday evening is a concert by the Milwaukee Festival Youth Brass at the Lincoln Center of the Arts at 7 PM.
Sunday, March 21, 2010
And say hello. I'll be selling the tickets!
Also, the Milwaukee Festival Youth Brass will be holding auditions on April 23 and 24. The Youth Brass, also directed by MFB Maestra Patricia Backhaus, welcomes brass and percussion student musicians from age 10 through 17. For the audition, students will be asked to perform a three to five minute solo or etude, scales, double and triple tonging and sight reading. Percussionists will be asked to play drum set, tympani, and mallet instruments.
Rarely can a student in that age range participate in a British style Brass Band; truly a unique experience.
And you can see the Milwaukee Festival Youth Brass perform on Tuesday evening March 30th at 7 PM, at the Lincoln Center of the Arts, 820 E. Knapp St. If you'd like more information regarding the auditions, please contact Maestra Backhaus at Director@mfbrass.org. Or see the web site for more information: http://www.mfbrass.org/.
Sunday, March 14, 2010
While I do not have the details of the concert, their performances are always fun. You can follow Tosa Band, and their sister group Tosa Jazz, on the web site: www.arcfile.com/tosaband/. And they are now on Facebook. See the link from their web site.
And don't forget the Knightwind Ensemble concert on the 21st at 3 PM at Wisconsin Lutheran College.
Sunday, March 7, 2010
Now on the the concert preview. The Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Concert Band (MMCCB) will perform on Saturday March 27 at 3 PM in the Schwan Concert Hall on the campus of Wisconsin Lutheran College. The theme is Adventures in Music, and the program has many different styles of music aimed for younger students.
The program includes two classical standards. First, the band will perform Ravel's Bolero, an orchestral favorite that transcribes nicely for band. Also on the program is The Pines Of The Appian Way, the last movement from Respighi's Pines of Rome.
Featured on the program is the conductor, Karen Lippert, performing a fun clarinet piece called Pepperino. Also included is music from The Lion King. And a surprise special guest will make an appearance.
As I mentioned above, the program is aimed at introducing younger students (grade and middle school students) to classical music. A special treat will be intermission refreshments of cookies and milk! Kids of all ages will enjoy that.
So, mark your calendar for Saturday March 27th. The MMCCB concerts are always fun. Be sure to attend, and be sure to bring your kids. They'll have a great time, enjoy some cookies and milk, and learn about classical music.
And a note for April: the MCCB will welcome the Dallas Brass. The Brass will perform on Sunday April 25 at 6 PM at the Wisconsin Lutheran High School Auditorium. More information upcoming!
Sunday, February 28, 2010
Sunday, February 21, 2010
If you know a talented high school or college musician, here is a wonderful opportunity. You can get all the details, and an application, from the MFSO web site: http://my.execpc.com/~regent/mfso.htm
Sunday, February 14, 2010
Mark your calendars for Sunday March 21st at 3 PM. The Knightwind Ensemble will present Transitions at 3 PM in the Schwan Concert Hall on the campus of Wisconsin Lutheran College. The concert will be directed by Associate Conductor Don Glassel. As some of you know, the previous director, John Steinke, stepped down as Music Director of the Ensemble after 32 years. The search for a new Music Director is underway, and this concert is indeed a transition from one music director to the next.
Mr. Glassel has chosen a number of new works for the Ensemble to perform, as well as some standards of the wind band repertoire. The new pieces include two from composers that Knightwind Ensemble concert goers will recognize: Timothy Mahr and Thomas Doss.
The Mahr composition is Mountain Prayers. He wrote it in honor of the retirement of Dr. Derald DeYoung of Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Knightwind concert goers might remember that Dr. Mahr wrote Imprints, a work commissioned by the Knightwind Ensemble in 1989. Dr. Mahr's music is very approachable and always enjoyable.
The new piece by Austrian composer Thomas Doss is Magic Overture. In the words of the composer: "the piece was written as an anniversary present for the Burgermusik Gotzis in Austria. The magic of music and landscape in the Austrian Vortarlberg area spread throughout the little village." It's a wonderful little piece that I'm sure you will enjoy!
The program also includes the Symphony For Band by Vincent Persichetti, one of the really big pieces for wind band; the Giles Farnaby Suite of Gordon Jacob; and the first movement from Johan de Meij's Symphony Number One: The Lord of the Rings, which is a musical description of Gandalf the Wizard. A lot of great music for a Sunday afternoon!
For ticket information, please see the Knightwind Ensemble web site: http://www.knightwind.org/. Note that if you print the page with the concert announcement, you'll get $1 off the cost of the adult tickets in your group. And stop by to say Hi, as I will be selling the tickets!
Sunday, February 7, 2010
A concert of Italian favorites must have a Rossini overture. Dr. Patricia Backhaus, the MFB Music Director, has chosen The Italian Girl in Algiers, always a favorite. Music by Puccini features Euphonium soloist Dave Mayer, in Nessun Dorma. And the feature work is a wonderful, and very difficult, brass band arrangement of The Pines of Rome, by Respighi. Wow! I wonder if the members will have any lip left after that one!
Tickets are $12 for adults and $9 for Seniors and Students. Group rates are available. For more concert information, see the web site: http://www.mfbrass.org/. The concert is sponsored in part by our friends at the Foundation for Heart Science, Ltd., www.heartscience.org.
And one more thing to mention: the MFB will be partnering with the Hunger Task Force to fight hunger in the Milwaukee area. If you bring 2 or more non-perishable food items, you'll receive a discounted admission to the concert. A discount for helping others...it doesn't get much better than that!
Sunday, January 31, 2010
All the details of the competition, as well as the application, at at the Orchestra's web site: http://my.execpc.com/~regent/mfso.htm.
And don't forget to pace your reservation for the Menomonee Falls Symphony Dinner and Concert at the Silver Spring Country Club on the 12th and 13th. See the web site above for details and reservation information.
Sunday, January 24, 2010
The theme of the concert this year, in keeping with Valentine's Day, is Romance: Mars and Venus. The program will include musical portrayals of romantic encounters between the sexes. I also have it on good authority that the concert will also include a preview of their classical concert coming up in May, which will include the New World Symphony of Antonon Dvorak.
Tickets are $40. The brochure with all the details and the ticket form are at the Orchestra's web site: http://my.execpc.com/~regent/mfso.htm. Reservations are due by February 8th.
Not only is it a wonderful evening at a great price, you are also supporting the one Community Orchestra in our area. And that is wonderful in itself.
Sunday, January 17, 2010
This year WASB is opening the audition to all instrument groups, so if your high school student plays a string instrument, he or she can audition as well (providing the solo work has an arrangement for Band). The winner will receive $500 and be invited to perform a selection with the Band at their concert on Friday April 30th. The Honorable Mention winner will be invited to perform with the Band at the concert on a selected piece.
The auditions will be held on Saturday February 20th in the Shattuck Music Center on the campus of Carroll University in Waukesha. The deadline for applications is Friday Jauary 22, 2010. The entry fee is $15. Questions should be emailed to email@example.com. And see the WASB web site for more details: www.wasband.org.
Sunday, January 10, 2010
The Knightwind Ensemble of Milwaukee has had the same Music Director for over 30 years, until now. Maestro John Steinke retired as Music Director of the group after their November concert. Since that time, the Ensemble has been searching for candidates to replace the Maestro. A number of candidates have emerged and the interview process has begun. I expect we will hear more of the progress later in the spring. But for now, I can tell you that if you were interested in the position but had not submitted your resume, you are too late.
Some of you may know that I volunteer for the Knightwind Ensemble. In the spirit of full disclosure, I must tell you that I am not a part of the process for evaluating the applicants for the Music Director position. However, as news becomes available, I will post it.
I can also tell you about the music planned for the Spring Concert on Sunday March 21 very soon. Rehearsals have begun and I will be able to discuss the program with the Associate Conductor and Acting Music Director Don Glassel.
More to follow.
Sunday, January 3, 2010
Until then, something for your calendar, or maybe your refrigerator!
12 & 13 – Menomonee Falls Symphony Orchestra, Silver Spring Country Club, Dinner/Concert
20 – Waukesha Area Symphonic Band, Concerto Competition open to wind and percussion players in grades 9 through 12, time TBA
7 – Lakeshore Symphonic Band, Cedarburg PAC
7 – Milwaukee Festival Brass, Wisconsin Lutheran College – Italia, 3 PM
16 - Wauwatosa Community Band, Longfellow Middle School, 7 PM
21 – Knightwind Ensemble, Wisconsin Lutheran College, 3 PM
27 - Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Concert Band, Wisconsin Lutheran College, 3 PM
25 - Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Concert Band welcome the Dallas Brass, Wisconsin Lutheran College, 6 PM, Master Class in the afternoon
30 – Waukesha Area Symphonic Band, Carroll University – Luminescence, 7:30
6 - Wauwatosa Community Band, Longfellow Middle School, 7:30
8 – Menomonee Falls Symphony Orchestra, Sussex Hamilton Fine Arts Center, 7:30
16 – Lakeshore Symphonic Band, Cedarburg PAC
16 - Milwaukee American Legion Band, Milwaukee Lutheran High School, 3 PM
31 - Knightwind Ensemble, Milwaukee County Zoo, 1 PM
31 - Wauwatosa Community Band, TBD
31 - Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Concert Band, Milwaukee County War Memorial, 5 PM
6 – Milwaukee Festival Brass, Wisconsin Lutheran College – Spirituelle, 3 PM