In Fall of 2014 I began my second and final year as a doctoral student at Arizona State University.  In addition to taking classes, I guest conducted both the Wind Ensemble (undergraduate music majors) and Wind Orchestra (graduate performance students) here.  I also taught one section of undergraduate conducting alongside my mentor, Gary Hill.  Additionally, I was the trombone tech for ASU’s Sun Devil Marching Band, directed by James Hudson.  On top of all of this, I continued my research into symphonies for wind band and began the process of applying for my first full-time college teaching job.  Easy-Pease-y!

 

The ASU band season kicked off with a 50th anniversary tribute to Gammage Auditorium on September 23.  This was especially meaningful for the band at ASU, since Gammage was the venue for the CBDNA national conference in 1964, when the auditorium was brand new.  For this concert, the Wind Orchestra, under the direction of Gary Hill, played:

Sinfonietta – Ingolf Dahl

Prelude in E-flat minor – Dmitri Shostakovich, arr. Reynolds

Fanfare from “La Peri” – Paul Dukas

Strategic Air Command March – Clifton Williams

The Star Spangled Banner – Francis Scott Key, arr. John Williams

 

This year began a 2-year-long celebration of the 100th anniversary of the ASU bands.  The idea was to have the bands look back at the past 100 years one decade at a time.  The first of these concerts happened on October 7, when the Wind Ensemble and Wind Orchestra teamed up for a Tribute to the 60s under Gary Hill’s baton.  The repertoire was set to include a reprise of the Dahl Sinfonietta, and the Shostakovich Prelude, plus:

Fiesta del Pacifico – Roger Nixon

Fantasia in G major – Johann Sebastian Bach

Elegy for a Young American – Ronald Lo Presti

Incantation and Dance – John Barnes Chance (conducted by me)

 

The Wind Orchestra moved on to the 70s with its November 5 concert: “The 70s: Looking Back, Looking Forward”:

Sweelinck Variations – David Noon

…and the mountains rising nowhere – Joseph Schwantner

Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Wind Ensemble – Frank Ticheli, featuring ASU saxophone professor Chris Creviston

 

The Wind Ensemble and Concert Band followed with a 70s show of their own on November 25:

Concert Band (directed by graduate students Trae Blanco and Seph Coats):

Landscapes – Rossano Gallante

Prelude and Fugue in G-minor – J.S. Bach, arr. Moehlmann

Cajun Folk Songs – Frank Ticheli

Fantasy on a Theme by Sousa – Andrew Boysen, Jr.

Viking March – Karl King

Wind Ensemble:

Armenian Dances, Part 1 – Alfred Reed (conducted by Seph Coates)

Slava! – Leonard Bernstein (conducted by Trae Blanco)

Dog Breath Variations – Frank Zappa (conducted by Serena Weren)

 

On December 2, I presented my doctoral conducting recital with the Wind Orchestra.  I conducted a very unique program of two large chamber works that offer very different perspectives on the 1940s.  The concert was called “Shades of Black”, and it featured:

Symphonietta – Willem van Otterloo

Ebony Concerto – Igor Stravinsky, featuring Curtis Sebren as soloist

It was recorded live, and is now on YouTube forever:

It gets going for real around the 9-minute mark.  Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you want to see my lecture notes.