Concert Preview (part 3)

Name this composer:

He was born in the city of J.S. Bach–Leipzig–most ironically in the Jewish quarter.  Living in such a rich historical environment, he was exposed to all of the finest music of the time performed by one of the world’s most renowned orchestras, the Gewandhaus.  At nine, he heard Der Freischutz led by its composer, an event which probably forever changed German opera.

Regardless of what one may think of his politics, his philandering (he would run off with the wife of famed conductor Hans von Bulow, who herself was the illegitimate daughter of Franz Liszt), one cannot argue the raw power of his music.  His magnum opus took some 25 years to come to fruition and again, the opera world has remained forever changed.

Answer is Richard Wagner!

Concert Preview (Part 2)

The year 1913:  The War to End All Wars was about to break out in Europe.  The United States would maintain its neutrality until almost the bitter end.  All while Karl King was writing circus marches.  A child named Nicodemo was born to Italian immigrants in New York City.  Surrounded by music at a young age, he would enter the Julliard School right before the outbreak of the Second World War.

Norman Dello Joio would go on to compose works for orchestra, wind band (10 compositions!), film scores, and other media.  He would win the Pulitzer Prize for music in 1957.  He won an Emmy for his television score, “The Louvre” (1964), a work later arranged for winds.

On Sunday the QCWE will play Dello Joio’s Satiric Dances, written for the city of Concord, Massachusetts, in commemoration of April 19, 1775…a day that the “shot was heard ’round the world.”

Don’t miss Part 1 of our concert preview!

Concert Preview from Conductor Brian Hughes (part 1)

Born the same year as Norman Dello Joio and you’ve never heard of him, unless you are a denizen of the band world, or can read German. Oddly enough, his Wiki article is found in that language.  His name: Clare Ewing Grundman and he’s as American as American can be.

He created works for radio, television, ballets, musicals, and films, but his anonymity is due to the fact that Grundman spent most of his lifetime writing for the wind band.  The Grundman Archive at Ohio State University is undoubtedly awaiting some researcher to discover its treasures.

There appears to be no extant recording of Grundman’s delightful work, The Black Knight. That will be remedied soon.

October 20, 2013–mark your calendars

Fall Concert Sunday, October 20th!

The 28th season of the Quad City Wind Ensemble kicks off with our Fall Concert on Sunday, October 20th at 3:00pm.  Conducted by Brian L. Hughes, the concert will include a performance of Aaron Copland’s Lincoln Portrait, featuring narration by Kai Swanson.

Works by Karl King, Giuseppe Verdi, and Richard Wagner will also be performed.  The concert will immediately be followed by a reception with free refreshments and homemade treats.  Admission is $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and FREE for all students through 12th grade.  Click here to view the concert poster with additional details.

2013-2014 QCWE Season Announced

The Quad City Wind Ensemble has announced that four full concerts will be produced during the 2013-2014 season.  The season will include a Holiday Concert in addition to the regular Fall, Winter, and Spring concerts.  In making the announcement, QCWE Board President Jeremy Hill noted that, “We received excellent reviews last year for our Holiday Concert, and QCWE members had such a great time playing, that the Holiday Concert was a must.  That concert will have a similar format to last year, as we will share the stage with our friends and colleagues of the Big River Brass Band.”  Hill also noted that new this year is a Saturday evening concert in the Spring, as part of the QCWE’s commitment to seeking new ways to reach audiences.  Admission for all concerts (Holiday concert excepted) will remain $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and free admission for all students through 12th grade.

Details including dates and times can be found on the Concerts page of the QCWE website, or by visiting www.qcwindensemble.org

April 28th Concert Notes (part 3)

Catch up with part 1 here and part 2 here.

Read below for the conclusion of our 3 part series about April 28th’s repertoire from conductor Brian Hughes.

The death of John Barnes Chance–accidentally electrocuted before his 40th birthday–was among the greatest losses to the band world.  It seems as though everything he wrote for winds is landmark and possibly none more so than Incantation and Dance, amazingly enough his very first piece for the medium.

Arkansas native Steven Bryant studied with McBeth at Ouachita Baptist University before moving onto the Julliard School.  He is part of a growing number of contemporary composers aligning with Hanson’s vision that the wind band medium is probably more viable than the orchestra.  First Light, a hauntingly beautiful depiction of the sunrise over an Italian village, is among his most evocative works.

The program also includes the winner of the Charles B. DCamp Scholarship, Caitlin Thom, a student at Pleasant Valley High School.  She rose to the top over the largest number of entrants in recent memory and will be presenting the thrilling third movement of Eric Ewazen’s Marimba Concerto.

To close the performance, we come full circle to Francis McBeth’s transcription of Howard Hanson’s famous Symphony No. 2, “Romantic.”  This work has become known as the “Interlochen Theme” as it closes all summer concerts at the famed music school.

This concert promises to be another in a line of outstanding performances by the 2012 American Prize Winning Quad City Wind Ensemble.

Join us Sunday, April 28th at 3:00pm at Allaert Hall, Galvin Fine Arts Center, St. Ambrose University, Davenport, Iowa.  Tickets are $10 for Adults, $8 for Seniors, and Students high school and under receive FREE admission.