Euphonium & Tuba News (Joe Skillen, Editor)
He’s in the Army Now (again!)” Neal Corwell rejoins The US Army Band
After more than 12 years as a free lance euphonium soloist and composer in the civilian world, Dr. Neal Corwell will be joining The U.S. Army Band in Washington, D.C. (“Pershing’s Own”) as of January 2002. Neal is no stranger to the organization, having been a member of, and frequent soloist with the band from 1981 to 1989. When asked about the new job, Dr. Corwell commented, “The decision to audition for the recent opening in the band may have come as a surprise to many, but I like to keep every one, including myself, on their toes! Some people thought I was a little crazy to leave the band in 1989, but it turned out to be a good career move. During my years as a civilian I picked up another degree, got some college teaching experi ence, composed dozens of new works for low brass, started a publishing company, and played MANY solo recitals.
I feel I’ve grown quite a bit, and believe going back into the band at this point in my life will be an equally good move.”
~Submitted by Karen Cotton
Matthew Nelson recently accepted a position as tubist with The United States Army Field Band, Fort Meade, Maryland. He previously attended Indiana University, where he studied with Daniel Perantoni.
News about Recordings and New Publications
Dean Miller was appointed to the U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own” after an audition on December 17, 2001. Miller is a former student of Brian Bowman and Bob Powers. Miller will join the band after completing his Army basic training.
People in the News
Bierley Awarded Honorary Doctorate
Long-time ITEA member Paul Bierley wa awarded an honorary Doctor of Music degree from his alma mater, Ohio State University, in December of 2001. In addition to receiving the honorary doctorate at the fall semester commencement, Dr. Bierley was honored with the presentation of a special concert by Keith Brion and his New Sousa Band in celebration of Bierly’s extensive scholarly work to chronicle the life and musical efforts of John Philip Sousa. The commencement program tribute to Dr. Bierley reads as follows:
Paul Edmund Bierley is historian, musician, scholar, lecturer, and, prior to a major career change, aeronautical engineer.
A 1953 graduate of The Ohio State University with a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical engineering, Mr. Bierley worked as an engineer for North American Aviation, serving as an airplane and missile designer, technical writer, and data manager. Following his retirement from the engineering field, he devoted his time to pursuing his love of music, especially the life and works of John Philip Sousa. A lifelong musician, he played the tuba with the Columbus Symphony O rchestra from 1965 to 1980 and with the Detroit Concert Band from 1973 to 1993. He served as assistant conductor of the North American Aviation Concert Band from 196 1 to 1976.
Mr. Bierley has written the defini tive works on Sousa, considered to be the most important figure in the development of the great band tradi tion in the United States. Through the publication of three works – John Philip Sousa, American Phenomenon (1973), John Philit)Sousa:A Descriptive Catalog of His Works (1 973), and The Works of John Philip Sousa (1984) – he has provided complete documentation of Sousa’s career.
Mr. Bierley formed his own publishing house, Integrity Press, in Westerville, Ohio, to make available books about band music and musicians that might not find publishers elsewhere. Among the nine books published by Integrity thus far are the two-volume Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music and Supplement to the Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music, regarded as the most significant documents on band music of the last century. Mr. Bierley’s other writings include more than 40 articles for music-related periodicals, numerous liner notes for music record ings, concert programs essays, and annotations and biographies for reference books on music.
He is the recipient of a number of awards for his work, including the Edwin Franko Goldman Memorial Citation from the American Band masters A ssociation, the Louis Sudler Medal of the Order of Merit from the John Philip Sousa Foundation, the Deems Taylor Award from the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers, the God and Country Award from the Salvation Army, and the Columbus Senior Musicians Hall of Fame.
News about Recordings and New Publications
Sotto Voce tours and releases first CD recording
The Sotto Voce Tuba Quartet (Demondrae Thurman & Patrick Schulz, euphoniums and Nat Mcintosh & Mike Forbes, tubas) visited the southwest this past fall as they finalized their recording contract with Summit Records in Tempe, Arizona. Their first recording, and Summit Record’s first Tuba/Euphonium Quartet CD, entitled “Consequences,” is nOw available. During their visit, they enjoyed the extremely “warm” hospitality of their hosts, Kelly Thomas, Michael Fay, and Sam Pilafian as they gave performances and masterclasses at the University of Arizona, Northern Arizona and Arizona State Universities, respectively.
A trip to Arizona would not have been complete without a whirlwind visit to the world’s largest hole in the ground (see photo). If you would like to learn more about Sotto Voce or hear clips from their new CD, please visit them on the web at: www.tubaquartet.com.
Joseph Skillen Releases Solo CD .. Blue Plate Special
In the midst of his numerous duties at Louisiana State University and as an Associate Editor for the ITEA Journal, Joseph Skillen has released his first solo CD project on the Mark Label. The recording features Skillen on tuba and Jan Grimes, pianist on some new works by Louisiana Composers Paul Hayden and Dinos Constantinides as well as some recordings of other “classic” solo pieces such as Anthony Plog’s Three Miniatures, the Adagio and Allegro by Schumann, Eric Ewazen’s Concerto for Tuba, and the Concertina by Rolf Wilhelm. For more information about the recording, please contact Skillen at jskille@l u.edu or go to the Mark Recording website at www.markcustom.com
David Uber has numerous works premiered
David Uber’s newly commissioned works Greenwich Villag Vignettes” for three trombones and tuba and “River Songs” for three euphoniums received their world premiere in Osaka, Japan on November 21, 2001 by the Symphoniker Low Brass Quartet at 0saka University. Both composition will be published by TubaEuphonium Press.
Other newly commissioned works by Uber include Sinfonietta for four tubas and four euphoniums (written for Symphonia and R. Winston Morris) and Sonata, written for Ross Tolbert, which will be published by Encore Music Publishers.
New CD-ROM version of Pioneers in Brass by Glenn Bridges
In May of this year, I republished my uncle’s book along with additional items of his writing and publishing. It is Pioneers in Brass, by Glenn D. Bridges, edition 4.0. It is in a multi-media CD-ROM format, with search and print capabilities. While this has not been my first published book, it is by far the lengthiest (starting in 1988 working with the Intetnational Trombone Association) and often frustrating project I have experienced, but the accolades for making this work again available have not stopped and have made it a most fulfilling project. Reviews are expected in major music journals and one on the Internet can be seen at: http://www.brass world.com/pob.htm.
In 1988, the Glenn D. Bridges archive was formerly named as part of the International Trombone Association’s archive. Many researchers considered Glenn’s collection of recordings, the premiere collection of recordings of brass players of the late 19th and early 20th Century in the country. It included the letters and memorabilia that helped Glenn write his renowned book, one of the few reference narratives of early brass musicians of the era available. Glenn himself was part of this scene and knew and heard many of the player he wrote about. It was the intention of the ITA to republi h this important book, but they were unable to find a publisher or the funding to do that, and after 1995, as nephew, I took ver the project for the family.
Pioneers in Brass has seen three previous print editions. The first edition was a thin paperback released in 1965. The second edition wa hardbound, expanded and released in 1968 with some copies having errata tipped in. The 1972 edition included revised pages, additional materials and a new section on trombone and euphonium players. Some of those hardbound editions were added to with tipped in pages up until 1988 when the work went out of print. Pioneers in Brass continues as one of few reference sources of these early brass players, and is a frequently cited source in recent Internet articles. The new edition, offering nearly 70 biographies of important brass musicians, also includes “The Cornet and the Cornetist,” historical cornet talks by Herbert L. Clarke originally written in 1918,1921,1923, compiled and published by Glenn in 1970. The CD includes an additional article missing from the 1972 edition, photos and inserts that were not bound with all of the 1972 editions, and 45 audio examples of some of the players profiled. In the added notes section, references are given to additional resources of some of those profiled.
The book is being distributed by an independent bookstore at www.bookbay.com/PioneersinBrass.htm/
Sternberg Kft. Opens Doors
The Hungarian tradition in brass instrument building will come to life once again in coming months. Zoltan Juhasz, Chief Executive and master craftsman, announces that Joseph Sternberg Budaors will begin production of trumpets, flugelhorns, French horns, tenor horns, and euphoniums in 2002. The grand opening for this new operation, affiliated with the TA Musik Group, Gerhard Meinl, Chief Executive, took place on 16 February, 2002. The operation will involve the finest Hungarian craftsmen under the leadership of Meister Juhasz. For more information on Joseph Sternberg Budaors, visit the company web site at http://www.joseph-sternberg.eom.
German Competition for Bariton and Euphonium
October 5 – 13, 2001 found the euphonium world fo used on th Bavarian Music Academy at Hammelburg, Germany for the First German ompetition for Bariton and Euphonium. Spon ored by the Deutsches Tubaforum, this event provided nine days of educational events in addition to an excellent first ever competition for these instruments in Germany.
First German Competition for Bariton/Euphonium Prize Winners: (l-r) Michael Luther, Helmut Schilling, and Reinder Schmidt.
There were a total of 24 partici pants, and judges for the competition included Professor Klemens Propper (President of Deutsches Tubaforum), Hermann Grollmann (Director of the Bavarian Music Academy), Toni Scholl (Conductor of the Polizeimusikkorps of Baden-Wurttemberg), Markus Theinert (Chief Conductor of the Musikkorps of the Bavarian Police, Munich), Manfred Heidler ( Music Officer of the Second Luftwaffenkorps, Karlsruhe and Vice President of Deutsches Tubaforum), Angie Hunter (Euphonium Soloist), and Professor Joachim Mittelacher (Hochschule der Kunste, Berlin). Literature performed by the competitors included the Hidas Euphoniada, Wilhelm’s Concertina, Kalke’s Megavissey Tales, and Sparke’s Pantomime. First prize in the competition went to Michael Luther of the Bebirgsmusikkorps der Bundeswehr. Second and third prizes went to Helumt Schilling of the Bundesgrenzschutzprasidium of Munich and Reiner Schmidt of the Radio ymphony Orehe tra of Frankfurt, respectively. Congratulations to Deutsches Tubaforum on the institution of this very important event.
Georgia Honors Low Brass Choir
The Sixth Annual Georgia Honors Low Bra s hoir festival was held on the campu of Valdosta State University on February 1-2, 2002. This two-day event involved high school trombone, euphonium, and tuba students from Georgia and North Florida. Dr. Kenneth Kroesche, Low Brass Professor at Western Carolina University, served as the euphonium clinician and Sgt. Michael Forbes, tubist with the U.S. Army Band, “Pershing’s Own”, served as the tuba clinician.
GHLBC Hosts and Clinicians: (l-r) Sean Flanigan, Brad Edwards, Douglas Farwell, Kenyon Wilson, Kenneth Kroesche, Michael Forbes
During the opening concert, each of clinicians and the clinic host, Dr. Kenyon Wilson, performed. As an added feature this year, the VSU Tuba/ Euphonium ensemble commissioned an original composition from Michael Forbes. The work, entitled Cosmic Voyage , was funded through a grant from the VSU Faculty Research Fund. Along with guest quartet Euphouria, the VSU ensemble premiered the work with Sgt. Forbes conducting. Another added feature this year was a full recital by Euphouria, a guest quartet from Tennessee. The members of Euphouria are Carroll Gotcher, Greg English, Atticus Hensley on euphonium and Stu Henry on tuba. The quartet performed music from a wide variety of styles including many arrangements by members of the quartet.
For more information about this clinic plea e visit the GHLBC web site at http://www.valdosta.edu/- kwilson/ghlbc.html.
Big Brass Bash XV at Central Washington University
Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Washington was the scene of the Harvey Phillips Northwest “Big Brass” Bash XV. The event was hosted by Larry Gookin, Director of Bands at Central Washington University, on Saturday and Sunday, July 7 and 8, 2001. It was perhaps the most successful and meaningful session to date with special awards presented to Harvey Phillips and Marilyn Trail, wife of the late President of the Board, John Baker. Over 140 participants from as far away as New Orleans were in attendance. Brian Bowman and Pat Sheridan were the guest artists.
After registration, the event began with a rehearsal of the large group in preparation for the final Sunday afternoon park concert. Following the rehearsal, Brian Bowman presented a clinic on breathing as applied to our instruments involving all participants. After lunch the large ensemble rehearsed again and then took a break before the first recital of the day.
The format for the event was much the same as in the past except for the addition of an extra recital for the youngest soloists. This short recital titled “The Young Artists Recital” featured 7th grade tubists Jens Peterson of Tacoma performing Corelli’s Sarabanda and Gavotta and Connor Day of Puyallup, Washington performing Rene Manier’s Premier Solo de Concours. 8th grade euphoniumist Evan Lewis from Puyallup performed three movements from Galliard’s Sonata No.1, and Quinn Wolcott, euphonium, also an 8th grader from Puyallup, performed Guy Ropartz’s Andante et Allegro. Kyle Gillette, tubist from Missoula, Montana performed an original work by Michael Rosbarsky written specially for him entitled Song for Kyle and Sam Thompson tubist from CUSick, Washington performed Robert Spillman’s “Andante” from Concerto
The Pro/Semi-pro Recital followed the Young Artist Recital. The Astoria Tuba Quartet b Jan the program with a m clley of piec s. Thi I’ up, a regular gr up at “Big Brass” Bash events for th past 10 years, consists of Bob Joinner and Sam Blumenthal, euphoniums, and Dennis Hale and Lee Stromquist, tubas. Leonard Byrne of the Spokane Symphony per formed Clifford Bevan’s Variations on The Pesky Sarpent on serpent. Matt Carlson, presently a student at the Oberlin Conservatory, performed Rachmaninoff’s Vocalise, followed by Martin Cochran, tubist from the University of Puget Sound, performing the “Allegro Deciso” from Gregson’s Tuba Concerto to conclude the first half of the program. The second half of the recital began with the Oregon Tuba Ensemble from Eugene, Oregon. Group members included Bill Martin, Jerry Ostermeir, Jeff Turay, and Warren Wellford on euphonium and Susan Daily, Dean Huston, Dave McKee, Jeff Olson and Jim Seaberry on tuba. The group was conducted by John Bigelow and their program was introduced by former member and President of the Oregon Tuba Association, John Huenink. Ryan Schultz, Principal Tuba of the Northwest Ballet, performed John Harmon’s Silhouette and USC graduate student, tubist Brian Knowlton, completed the program with a performance of J.B. Arban’s Carnival of Venice.
After a relaxing 2 hour dinner break, It was time for the John Baker Founder’s Recital. Chris Olka, Principal Tubi t of the Seattle Symphony opened with th Gregson Tuba Concerto. Torrey Lawrenc , tuba professor at the University of Idaho in Moscow, followed with Pergolesi’s Sinfonia arranged by Ralph Sauer. The first half of the recital was concluded with a performance by Brian Bowman. Among the pieces he performed were the Andante and Rondo by Capuzzi and Ravel’s Piece en forme de Habanera. He finished with Klengel’s “Allegro” from Concerto No. in Bb Major and the Picchi/Mantia Fantasia Originale.
The second half of the recital was opened by a special performance of Soichi Konagaya’s Celebration, a piece commis sioned by the Japanese Euphonium-Tuba Association in 1979 to honor the 50th Birthday of Harvey Phillips. Pat Sheridan was soloist and a select ensemble, consist ing of Brian Bowman, Jason Gilliam, Dave Baldock, euphoniums and Keating Johnson, Torrey Lawrence, and Chris Olka, tubas, accompanied him. The ensemble was conducted by Larry Gookin. Following their performance, a special plaque was awarded to H arvey Phillips for his enormous contributions to this event. Another plaque was presented to Marilyn Trail, John Baker’s wife in honor of the inspiration for and contributions to this event by John Baker. Marilyn in tum presented John’s extensive music collec tion and the “Threeba” to the Harvey Phillips Northwest “Big Brass” Bash. The “threeba” is a tuba with two additional bells soldered on that in the past was traditionally given as an award to the oldest person in attendance each year.
After the award ceremony Jason Gilliam, solo euphoniumist of the Tacoma Concert Band, performed the Marcello Sonata No . 1 for Cello or Bass . Keating Johnson, tubist and Director of Bands at Washington State University in Pullman, Washington, followed with Gliere’s Nocturne and Franz Strauss’s Nocturno. The rest of the second half of the program belonged to Pat Sheridan. He performed th Ellerby Tuba Concerto, the Barnes Yorkshire Ballad, and finished with Arban’s Variations on a Tyrolean Theme . What a way to end an already outstanding recital! Kim Russ was the accompanist for all three recitals. She deserves nothing but the greatest praise for a Saturday that started at SAM rehearsing with each and every soloist from the three recitals and then performing all three recitals admir ably. We are very fortunate to have such a fine accompanist who is so well versed in performing the literature of our instruments.
Saturday ended with the traditional ice cream party to the delight of all. Brian Bowman served ice cream to all partici pants. This gesture was typical of the caring and general unpretentious sharing exhibited by Brian, Harvey Phillips and Pat Sheridan throughout the event.
Sunday morning began with a two hour final rehearsal for the large group in preparation for the afternoon concert. This was followed by a clinic presented by Pat Sheridan. Pat emphasized the impor tance of mastering respiration in order to become a virtuoso on one’s instrument. We could not have asked for a more beautiful day for the final park concert. The ensemble had a shaded pavilion to play in and the park was bustling with many people out for a relaxing time. The ensemble played a mix of classical, jazz and pop tunes, and Harvey sang Rubber Ducky and Santa Wants a Tuba for Christmas with Pat Sheridan accompany ing. Brian Bowman performed “London derry Air” with a smaller ensemble, and the concert ended with Sousa’s Stars and Stripes Forever.
The Harvey Phillips Northwest “Big Brass” Bash XVI will be hosted by Eric Ryan, Band Director at Puyallup High School in Puyallup, Washington on Saturday and Sunday, July 13 and 14, 2002. Gene Pokorny, Principal Tubist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and Loren Marsteller, euphonium, Los Angeles freelance musician will be the guest artists. Don’t miss this fun event. If you are not on our current mailing list, please contact Ron Munson, 7906 56th Avenue Court East, Puyallup, Washington 98371. Phone (253) 770-8964, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
To find out more about the Harvey Phillips Northwest “Big Brass” Bash and download your registration form, visit our web site at http://www.HPNWBBb.org.
Perry, Iowa hosts the 23rd Annual William Bell Memorial Tuba Day
The 23rd Annual William Bell Memorial Tuba Day was held in Perry, Iowa on Saturday, November 3, 200l. Thirty tuba and euphonium performers, ranging from age 8 to 70, participated in the event, held at the Perry United Methodist Church, starting with registration, clinic, mass ensemble rehearsal, reception and tour of the Bill Bell Room at the nearby magnificently restored and highly awarded Hotel Pattee. Where else can you sit next to ITEA’s past president, Dr. Jeff Funderburk, and 6th grader Nick Bretthauer and have the wonderful sounds of a unified mass ensemble? A free concert was given by the group as part of Perry Fine Arts series, and the evening culminated at the grave site of Mr. Bell, with the group playing the traditional songs to honor Mr. Bell at sunset.
Bill Bell has long been recognized for his priceless contributions to the highest musical level of tuba performance. He was among the most respected musicians and teachers of his time, and he moentored many of the finest tubists that the world knows today. The festival began in 1980, at the suggestion of the local band director with support from Mr. Bell’s sister. A few of Mr. Bell’s prominent former student joined the effort to make this annual event a most excellent and unique gathering to promote the best in tuba performance and pedagogy.
This year’s clinician was Deanna Swoboda, tubist with the Dallas Brass, an international performer and clinician, recording artist with Summit Records on a solo CD entitled “Deanna’s Wonderland,” and video recording artist with her “Brass Rap! Project.Ms. Swoboda gave a marvelous clinic, focusing first on exercises in breathing and buzzing of the mouthpiece. Deanna conducted the rehearsal and performance, choosing a wonderful variety of music, including traditional pieces arranged by Iowa’s legendary “tubador,” Gary McCurdy, who mamtams the music library for the festival and has attended all but one of the Tuba Days in Perry. Many participants felt this was one of the best Tuba Days ever, carrying on the rich tradition of this most unique event of the tuba world.
The 24th Annual William Bell Memorial Tuba Day will be held at the United Methodist Church in Perry, Iowa on Saturday, November 2, 2002 and promises to be another great event. Why not add this unique event to your calendar, and plan to come and participate! For more information, contact Mike & Cindy Short, 682 32nd Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50312, ph 515-279-8130, Email email@example.com.
The Little Dickens Band
Skaneateles, New York enjoys the hnstmas season by producing an annual Dickens Celebration each weekend from Thanksgiving to Christmas. Characters from historical Dickens time are there, including such notables as Father Christmas, Mr. Scrooge (with ghosts), Queen Victoria, the Cratchet, and Mr. Dickens himself. Performers ar professional actors hired by the Skaneateles Chamber of Commerece, as well as local residents. “The Little Dickens Band” is a roving brass quintet that plays traditional seasonal music. We played on street comers and most often were invited into the stores and restaurants to add cheer to an already festive atmosphere.
The Little Dickens Band
The LDB exists only during the holiday season, but are welcomed back- each year and are a much-loved part of the scene. We have been most fortunate regardmg weather considering what Central New York can give us for “excitement.” Members of the group (pictured) include: Norman Wanzer leader and trumpet (and ITEA member-he’s a eupher in real life!), Walter Melnick trumpet, John McDivitt, trombone, Harold Britton, horn, and Gerald (Jerry) Richardson tubist and ITEA member.
Editor’s Note: Although news of Anth ny Vazanna’s death has reached us somewhat late, we felt it imJ)ortant to share this news with our membershi1). He indeed J)rovided us with memorable music.
Anthony E. Vazzana, teacher-composer-musician, died in Long Beach, CA, Feb. 24th, 2001 from complications of a severe stroke he suffered four years ago. He had spent the past few years of his retirement in Austin, Texas. After attending the State University of New York at Potsdam, he earned his bachelor’s degree and a master’s and doctorate in music composition at the University of Southern California. After graduating from the USC School of Music, he was offered a teaching position there which he accepted and held for thirty-one years. Vazzana was the recipient of many awards and honors: two Alchin and a Moss and Friends of Music scholarships; The Helen Anstead award for his orchestral work, Symphonic Allegro; BMI and ASCAP grants and fellowships; USC School of Music/Friends of Music Award for excellence in teaching; the Burlington Northern Foundation 1Award for outstanding scholar; and a SUNY’s Minerva award for outstanding professional achievement. Residencies in composition included Dorland Mountain Colony, Bennington College Composers’ Conference, MacDowell Colony, Montalvo Arts Center, the Djerassi Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation at the Villa Serbelloni in Bellagio, Italy. He enjoyed reading, painting, hiking, cooking, photography, woodworking, traveling, and the theater. He was appreciated for his quick-wit and unique sense of humor. And in addition to classical music listening to and performing true jazz was one of his greatest joys. Vazzan; is survived by his wife Alma, a son Michael, three daughters – Lisa, Eva, and Adrienne, his brother Vincent, and four grandchildren.
A note on Dr. Vazzana from T.U.B.A. Past~President, Jim Self
Dr. Vazzana (Tony) was a brilliant and outgoing man – and a prolific composer and much loved professor. While doing my DMA work at USC I played the premiere of a work he wrote for Wind Ensemble – a set of 26 variations on a theme. I was astounded by the unique ways that he could re-state that theme, became a fan of his writing and told him so. We remained friends and colleagues for many years at USC before his retirement to Texas. Tony wrote a wonderful piece for tuba and percussion, Cambi, which I premiered at the International Tuba-Euphonium Conference in 1978 (at USC) – and he (anonymously) entered the LA Tuba Q uartet Competition with a complicated work for four bass tubas, Montage. It won an honorable mention. One day I received another (unsolicited) piece in the mail. It was a suite of seven virtuoso movements for solo tuba he entitled, Self Portraits. He also wrote a wonderful Euphonium Concerto for Brian Bowman. Many of his works are available from Tuba Euphonium Press. Anthony Vazzana did not compromise his music (because it wa too difficult) but wrote to xpand musicians and listeners alike. His music will have a long life and I predict that he will become better known when future musicians discover the beauty and virtuosity of his music.
To Learn more about Anthony Vazzana, visit: http://www.sai-national.org/phil/composers/avazzana.html
Internet Pick of the Quarter
William Bell Memorial Tuba Day
In honor of the William Bell Memorial Tuba Day – you’ve got to check out the following link to Hotel Pattee in Perry, Iowa: http://www.hotelpattee.com/rooms /kingdeluxe/.
This link shows a photo of the William Bell Room as well as giving some informa tion about reservations. It’s an interesting place for a nostalgic visit! ~JS