trombone ensemble



SWT Trombone Ensemble

On the evening of November 11,1999, the Southwest Texas
Trombone Ensemble provided an apprehensive crowd with a
truly wonderful performance. Starting with Sonata No.1 for
Trombone Choir by Evan Copley, the ensemble exhibited
fabulous variety in both the note and the speed in which
they were playing. This skill mindfully produced a range of
emotions, including anxiety and uneasiness. Charles R.
Hurt, the conductor of the ensemble, skillfully piloted the
ensemble in formulating an eerie feeling. I envisioned a
cemetery scene with the light fog, worn tombstones, and
mourners draped in black. The mood changed for the better
with the arrival of the allegro, bringing with it a sound of
a climax which flutters ones emotions. Sonata No.1
concludes climaxing one final time with a abrupt, powerful
end.
A highly emotional piece by Kazimierz Serocki titled
Suita na 4 Puzony flowed placidly interrupted every so often
by sounds of concern, as if someone were about to be
attacked by suprise. All the feelings produced in the
intrada are subdued by the depressing, dark, cold canone.
It’s a slow melody of sadness but a sadness of extreme
measure. A low pitch adds to the aura of mortality. These
two particular feelings, anxiety and gloom, are toyed with
throughout. During the arietta, a splendid job was done in
building up the final Toccatina. There seemed to be a
competition of sorts between the ensemble with sounds coming
from each horn individually and sporadically. This effect
created quite a frantic and raving atmosphere. To conclude
the piece, the ensemble triumphantly came into unison,
exploding with sounds of victory for the audience to discuss
with one another during intermission.
Following the intermission, the terrific trio of Joel
Davidson, Joe Kramer, and Mike Lawson performed David
Potter’s Aria & Rondo. This piece commences with Mr. Kramer
and Mr. Lawson playing a slow but peaceful melody soon to be
joined by Mr. Davidson a few seconds later. There is then a
series of progressive climatic surges, repeating three or
four times. I was personally overcome with a picture of
someone attempting to hide from a foe, with sounds of
approaching footsteps. The piece ends sharply with two
forceful notes.
In Arthur Frackenpohl’s Trombone Quartet, the audience
was treated as Mr. Charles Hurt stepped aside for the
showcase of an aspiring student conductor, Mr. Joel
Davidson. The combination of a falling sound accompanied by
one of fright brings forth frenetic pictures, such as a
disturbed ant hill. The Trombone Quartet finishes by
convincingly including the wide range of emotional tones
within the piece.
The final two performances, Satin Doll by Duke
Ellington and Super Bones by Jack Gale, livened the aura of
the auditorium and filled the air with sounds of blues and
jazz both. Greg Wilson masterfully wailed out each note to
its fullest, showcasing the unique and much admired sound of
the saxophone. Mr. Charles Hurt was absolutely correct in
complimenting the superior skill of Mr. Wilson before his
performance. Gale’s Super Bones was similar to Satin Doll
except for the ensemble was more prominent in the Gale
piece.
After being taken on a rollercoaster of emotions
through most of the performance, ending it with an upbeat
and vibrant style of music was truly a treat. I found
myself helpless in tapping hand and foot to the steady sound
of the rim shot and high hat. To me, the slow and
depressing nature of the earlier pieces mixed with random
build ups and climaxes seems to be smoothed over and over
taken by the gleeful jazz beats. I must say, to my own
suprise, I really enjoyed my evening.



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