Piedmont’s Wind Ensemble to Present a Musical ‘Journey’ on Nov. 20
Piedmont University’s Wind Ensemble will perform a free concert at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 20 at the Chapel on the Demorest campus, 992 Central Ave. The performance is open to the public. Face coverings and social distancing will be required.
Wind Ensemble Director Anand Sukumaran said the evening will take attendees on a “journey” through different places, times, and experiences.
“Our performance will bring together a collection of music that spans geographies, histories, and genres,” he said. “From the hills of Andalusia to the plains of Hungary. From the battlefields of the Civil War to the speakeasy of the jazz age. We hope to illustrate that music offers us a beautiful way to resonate with a wide range of human experiences across time and space. To help our audience members ‘journey’ with us, we will introduce each piece with a listening guide that will help them orient themselves in each new sonic landscape.”
The program for the evening opens with Amparito Roca by Jaime Texidor and arranged by Gary Fagan and American Folksong Trilogy by Claude T. Smith. It ends with Running and Jumping and Spring Fever, both by Andrew Neu.
“Our program greets the winter with a blast of heat as we open with Amparito Roca, a proudly elegant Spanish march in the paso doble — double step — style. Our next piece is a medley that continues the theme of martial music, but in the context of the American Civil War. Notwithstanding the conflict that spawned them, each piece conveys a sense of hope and unity,” Sukumaran said.
“We will close our concert with two contrasting jazz charts. Running & Jumping is in the big band swing style á la Benny Goodman or Glen Miller. Spring Fever brings in the groovy sounds of funk music in the vein of James Brown or Sly and the Family Stone.”
Sukumaran is looking forward to “being just another band member” in the final piece.
“In a first for us, I will be putting down my conductor’s baton and playing electric bass in the rhythm section on the final piece,” he said. “As our group grows in maturity and cohesion, I look forward to more such endeavors that will encourage musical independence.”
The Wind Ensemble is comprised of woodwind, brass, and percussion musicians who audition to participate. The group is a mix of music majors, non-music majors, adult community members, K12 music educators, and high school students.
“I love the diversity of the group and see it as a fantastic model of lifespan engagement with music, especially for our younger members,” Sukumaran said. “It allows them to understand the intersecting meanings that music making can have, be it an academic pursuit, a foundation for professional performance, a channel for serious recreation, or a space for forging community.”
To learn more about Piedmont's fine arts programs and events, visit The Fine Arts at Piedmont | Piedmont University.