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Ruth Asawa School of the Arts Band Concert

This concert followed Saturday night's Orchestra concert and had a completely different mood. Conducted by Maestro Brad Hogarth, the afternoon was filled with upbeat band music. Of course, there was a moment dedicated to Maestro Matt Cmiel, but I'll get to that later.

The first piece was Overture for Winds by Charles Carter. I have to make a confession that this repertoire is almost completely foreign to me with only a few exceptions, so my recollection of the performed pieces is not as clear as it would have been if I was actually acquainted with most of these pieces. Despite this, I'll do my best to describe what I heard. Overture for Winds was a strong opening to the concert. With its vigorous mood and triumphant character, this piece awoke the people who had managed to fall asleep as they waited for the concert to begin.

Variations on a Korean Folk Song by John Barnes Chance was my favorite piece in the first half. It was very interesting to hear a Korean folk song in the midst of the program. The piece and its performance was very mood-lifting, if I could put it this way. I found this piece not as intense as the Overture for Winds, but at the same time I enjoyed how the interpretation kept the listener intrigued the whole time.

Wild Nights by Frank Ticheli was the last piece in the first half. This piece took more time to get in to, personally for me. But I repeat, this repertoire is foreign to me and I can't judge the pieces for their full value. It was interesting to watch each instrument separately and listen for each individual parts.

After intermission came Antiphon by Fisher Tull. This piece was not like the previous pieces in the first half when it came to the mood it set.

A Longford Legend, A Collection of Irish Street Ballade by Robert Sheldon was what I remembered the most from the program. The three movements, A Longford Legend, Young Molly Bawn, and Killyburn Brae, each had a story to accompany them. Maestro Hogarth's interpretation of each movement was perfectly matching with the story the music had to tell. I enjoyed this very much.

At this point in the program, there was a surprise performance. Flautist Maddie Tuning brought together clarinetist Sarah Evenson and flautist Hansen Wu, and they performed a folk song called Homeward Bound. Maddie Tuning (voice) had organized this as a surprise with Sarah Evenson (clarinet) and Hansen Wu (flute) for Maestro Matt Cmiel, who, as you may know if you read my previous review, is leaving SOTA. Homeward Bound is often done by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and this piece brought tears to the eyes of the listeners. This piece was a memorable moment in the concert.
                   

Christus Factus Est by Anton Bruckner was a more 'standard' piece, and I found it a great contrast to everything that had gone before it on the program.

El Capitan March by John Philip Sousa was a grande finale to the program. This piece finished the concert very well, leaving the audience in a satisfied state of mind.

On December 11 and 13 at 7:30 p.m. off campus there is going to be a concert which will be a collaboration of the Vocal Department and the Instrumental Departments. I won't say anything else, but trust me, it's going to be exciting! Don't miss it and I'll keep you posted as to where it will be.


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