Generously supported by Mr. and Mrs. Phil A. Easterling
Featuring a performance by the UCF Wind Ensemble of the Zodiac Concerto with world-renowned solo artists, William Caballero, Principal Horn with the Pittsburgh Symphony, and Roger Oyster, Principal Trombone with the Kansas City Symphony and former Principal Euphonium with the United States Marine Band: The President’s Own.
Dr. Tremon Kizer, conductor
“Profanation,” from Symphony No. 1, Jeremiah (1944) Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990)
arr. Frank Bencriscutto
Jeremiah, Bernstein’s first symphony, was premiered in 1944, with the composer conducting the Pittsburgh Symphony, and Jennie Tourel as mezzo-soprano soloist, with the text coming from the Old Testament’s Book of Lamentations. Profanation, a scherzo, was originally sandwiched between the symphony’s first movement, Prophecy, and the third, Lamentations. The programmatic element of the movement is based on the traditional Hebrew Haftarah, a biblical selection from the Books of the Prophets read after the parashah in the Jewish synagogue service. The music depicts a general sense of destruction and chaos brought on by pagan corruption in ancient Jerusalem. The band version was later arranged by Frank Bencriscutto.
Pageant (1953) Vincent Persichetti (1915-1987)
David Schreier, guest conductor
Pageant was first performed at the American Bandmasters Association Convention in 1953 by the University of Miami Band with the composer conducting. Composed in two major sections, it opens with a pensive French horn solo that establishes the pitch and interval content for the entire work, even to the last chord. The opening slow section develops the initial theme by juxtaposing simple, open instrumentations using small forces, with lush, full chordal sounds involving the entire ensemble. A percussion break bridges the slow section to a fast allegro section which continues to develop the themes heard previously. This section features a number of contrasts in articulation, instrumentation and style. Themes are heard first one at a time and then on top of one another, and in the final portion of the work, the two principal subjects are developed simultaneously to a lively climax.
As the scent of spring rain… (2003) Jonathan Newman (b. 1972)
Scott Lubaroff, guest conductor
Jonathan Newman holds degrees from Boston University’s School for the Arts (BM), where he studied composition with Richard Cornell and Charles Fussell and conducting with Lukas Foss, and from the Juilliard School (MM), where he studied with composers John Corigliano and David Del Tredici and conducting with Miguel Harth-Bedoya. Early training includes Boston University Tanglewood Institute and Aspen Music Festival where he studied with composers George Tsontakis and Bernard Rands. Newman states that, “As the scent of spring rain… comes from a translation of the evocative first line of a love poem by Israeli poet Leah Goldberg. The poem itself was introduced to me by a good friend of mine a number of years ago, and I have a strong memory of how much the beauty of the original Hebrew and the imagery in her translation touched me. Because of that I deliberately did not work from the poem itself but only from my memory of it, which was so special to me that I didn’t want to disturb it with a re-reading which would create a new and different experience. As a result, the harmonic language, structure, and orchestration all aim to conjure the intense juxtaposition of sweetness and sadness which I most remember from the poem.”
Blues for a Killed Kat (1960) Jack End (1919-1986)
arr. by Frederick Fennell
Frederick Fennell wrote the following concerning his edition of Blues for a Killed Kat: “Jack End was a rare man who had the patience and curiosity to follow his talents to the directions in which they led him. He was a total clarinet player, a champion sailor in the snipe class, a casual marksman, and a gifted music arranger. By this time Jack had put the clarinet and tenor sax up on a very high shelf and had become a media person and a successful television producer at the console where his gifts at time, texture, technique, and counterpoint made that complex work as simple as a dixieland chorus. He had always been a club-date player frequently returning to the School at two o’clock in the morning to leave his instruments in his studio. It was on one of those early wintry mornings when Jack observed a cat that had lain dead for a few days to be still in the dimly lit gutter in front of Sibley Music Library. Two-in-the-morning could be a pretty dead time on Swan Street those many years ago. That cat was pretty dead, too. When he dropped the instruments in his studio he sat at the piano to express his sadness. What else, but with a Blues. His band played it for years and so did those of us who gathered for a class reunion in 1960 when I asked him to score it for The Eastman Wind Ensemble. The Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra recorded it twenty-five years later in 1986 when Jack End died in his 67th year.”
Dr. Scott Lubaroff, conductor
Manhattan Roll (1998) Robert Beaser (b. 1954)
Robert Beaser is widely regarded as one of the most accomplished composers of his generation. His music has won international acclaim and he is often cited as an important figure among the “New Tonalists.” In 1977, Beaser became the youngest composer to win the Prix de Rome, and in 1995 the American Academy of Arts & Letters awarded him their lifetime achievement award. Manhattan Roll, originally composed for orchestra for the New York Philharmonic’s 150th anniversary, is an excellent example of Beaser’s style and sense of humor (the title refers to a menu item at New York’s Empire Szechuan restaurant). Beaser strove to achieve maximum impact through this brief work, sharing, ”I wanted to do something absolutely electric and very big. It’s a kitchen sink, everything thrown into a very small, New York-style kitchen.” Manhattan Roll’s Latin feel comes from both its wealth of percussion and from the time and place in which it was conceived. Just before composing it, Beaser had curated a series, Sonidas de Las Americas, for the American Composers Orchestra, and driving one night through Latinoheavy upper Manhattan on a sweltering summer night, with the car windows open, “felt all of New York was vibrating around me.”. Manhattan Roll was rescored for wind ensemble in 2010.
Zodiac Concerto (2017) Anthony DiLorenzo (b. 1967)
William Caballero, horn
Roger Oyster, euphonium
The composer explains, “The first movement of this concerto, “Gemini,” was commissioned in 2006 as a solo show piece for Euphonium soloist Adam Frey and former Canadian Brass horn soloist Jeff Nelsen. At the time, Gemini was one of several works composed in the genre of Greek Mythology. Before the Zodiac concerto would come into fruition, nearly ten more years would pass, when Roger Oyster approached me with the idea that we expand Gemini into a full concerto. It was important to keep some sort of unity with the three movements, as if they were written at the same time. “Capricorn” was to set the stage for something more serious, warm and heartfelt, in contrast to Gemini, no mistake that it mirrored some of Capricorn’s own personality traits. With “Aries,” I wanted to write something that had plenty of direction and drive, as well as something otherworldly. I’m not one to write in a minimalistic style, but I do graze the style for a few opening bars or so, as if you were lifted off the ground by a wondrous mechanical flying machine headed off into the cosmos, before moving to a more melodic approach. As Aries wraps up, I revisit the more angular and rhythmic elements of Gemini which help bring things full circle.” The Zodiac Concerto was commissioned by Scott Lubaroff, Roger Oyster, and Bill Caballero. The world premiere performance was given in April, 2017, by the University of Central Missouri Wind Ensemble, Dr. Scott Lubaroff, Conductor, Roger Oyster and Bill Caballero, soloists. Mr. Caballero is Principal Horn with the Pittsburgh Symphony and Mr. Oyster is Principal Trombone with the Kansas City Symphony and former Principal Euphonium with The United States Marine Band: the President’s Own.
Of Our New Day Begun (2016) Omar Thomas (b. 1982)
Tremon Kizer, guest conductor
Of Our New Day Begun was commissioned by a consortium of 38 ensembles nationwide, led by Western Kentucky University, and was written to honor the nine beautiful souls who lost their lives to a callous act of hatred and domestic terrorism on the evening of June 17, 2015, while worshiping in the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina. The composer writes, “My greatest challenge in creating this work was walking the line between reverence for the victims and their families, and honoring my strong, bitter feelings towards both the perpetrator and the segments of our society that continue to create people like him. I realized that the most powerful musical expression I could offer incorporated elements from both sides of that line – embracing my pain and anger while being moved by the displays of grace and forgiveness demonstrated by the victims’ families.” Of Our New Day Begun was premiered on February 20, 2016 at the College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA) Southern Division conference at The Gaillard Center in Charleston, SC, located just across the street from Emanuel AME, with members of the church in attendance.
Molly On the Shore (1907) Percy Aldridge Grainger (1882-1961)
Percy Grainger was a piano prodigy turned composer who, known for his quirkiness, colorful prose, and his gregarious and engaging music. He came to the U. S. at the outbreak of World War I and enlisted as an Army bandsman. He went on to explore the frontiers of music with his folk song settings and his love of the saxophone. Grainger originally wrote Molly on the Shore in a 1907 string setting as birthday gift for his mother. The wind band setting was produced in 1920. Grainger explained his own approach to the music, saying, “In setting Molly on the Shore I strove to imbue the accompanying parts that made up the harmonic texture with a melodic character not too unlike that of the underlying reel tune. Melody seems to me to provide music with an initiative, whereas rhythm appears to me to exert an enslaving influence. For that reason I have tried to avoid rhythmic domination in my music — always excepting irregular rhythms, which seem to me to make for freedom. Equally with melody I prize discordant harmony, because of the emotional and compassionate sway it exerts.”
Jessica Needham (Piccolo)
Maria Picado Sandi*
Josue Reyes Diaz
Christian De La Torre
Olivia Browdy (piccolo)