The Department of Music at Ashland University is presenting four very different instrumental concerts the week after Thanksgiving which are all free and open to the public. From two recitals each featuring multiple student chamber ensembles to the annual TubaChristmas and concluding with the Winter Festival Band Concert, music fans can enjoy live music performances all week.
Beginning on Tuesday, December 2 at 7:30 p.m. in the Elizabeth Pastor Recital Hall, the first recital of the student chamber ensembles will present a clarinet trio under the direction of Dr. Thomas Reed, as well as brass, string and trumpet ensembles instructed by Michael Metcalf, Jane Reed and Gary Davis, respectively. On Wednesday, December 3, the featured ensembles will include a saxophone quartet directed by Dr. Reed along with a Jazz combo and the percussion ensemble led by Jeff Neitzke.
TubaChristmas is an idea conceived by Harvey Phillips, Professor of Tuba at Indiana University. Mr. Phillips wanted to demonstrate to the public what a beautiful sound a mass ensemble of tubas and euphoniums could make and to provide an opportunity for fellow low brass players to celebrate the season with the community. TubaChristmas is dedicated to the memory of Mr. William J. Bell. It’s a fun, holiday tradition the whole family can enjoy.
The 40-piece Ashland University Wind Ensemble is comprised of the outstanding wind and percussion players at the University and from the community. The ensemble begins Saturday's concert with Ralph Vaughan Williams' "Flourish for Wind Band" followed by Percy Aldrige Grainger's "Irish Tune from County Derry" which is based on the Irish melody "Londonderry Air." The Wind Ensemble closes their portion of the program with Frank Ticheli's two movement piece "Cajun Folk Songs" featuring solo alto saxophone.
After a brief intermission, the 65-member Ashland Area Community Concert Band takes the stage. Established in 1993, the ensemble is designed for both university students and members of the Ashland community to continue their musical study and creative activity. The Community Band's program begins with the stirring opening fanfare, silver screen opulence and lush lyricism of Alfred Reed's "Alleluia!! Laudamus Te" followed by John Wasson's "Sea Song Fantasy" which is a medley of sea songs and chanteys, and "The Gallant 7th", a march by John Philip Sousa composed and dedicated to the 7th Regiment, 107th Infantry, of the New York National Guard. They conclude the program with two Christmas medley's including John Wasson's "In the Christmas Mood" and Warren Barker's "It's Christmas."