Maslanka Residency Concludes with Brilliant Performances

Building on a remarkable season that included a stunning performance at the Midwest Clinic, Chamber Winds Louisville and the Louisville Concert Band combined with the University of Louisville Wind Symphony for a February 23rd performance highlighting the music of David Maslanka. The composer was in residence for several days in advance of the concert, spending coaching time with numerous ensembles.

The concert began with chamber performances featuring Curtis Essig, Reese Land, Roger Levering and Kristi Schmidt on an exhilarating trumpet quartet by Jason Basoco called Ice Journey, Kaelah McMonigle, Amber Guitierrez and Cory Barnfield presenting the world premiere of Les Poulets by Tyler Taylor, and an electric reading of Devil Dance by Payton MacDonald, performed by the Kaelah and Jeremy McMonigle Duo. These selections were followed by the Louisville Concert Band performing Aubrey Fanfare by Jack Stamp, then David Maslanka’s Give Us This Day, and the University of Louisville Wind Symphony on the world premiere of Maslanka’s Remember Me, with cello soloist Paul York and finally our visiting composer’s tour de force, Symphony No. 4. Three standing ovations during the course of the concert marked the large audience’s overwhelming response.

Midwest Clinic Recap

The Louisville Concert Band performance at the 67th Midwest Clinic was a special experience for audience and performers alike. Remarkable music making by terrific musicians along with wonderful guest conductors and a brilliant soloist made the concert itself magical and the entire event rich in memories. In the days that followed, many who heard the concert forwarded their appreciation. Here are excerpts from just two of the notes that came in after the performance:

…absolutely unblemished in your performance; all those things, blend, balance, pitch, transparency, etc…really knocked out with your band. Thanks for such a wonderful concert…

Wow and Wow!…Spirited, clean, fun and personal, what a great band!

Finally, from composer Frank Ticheli:

Thank you for inviting me to conduct my Korean Folksongs from Jeju Island with you at the Midwest Clinic this past December. Your performance was absolutely terrific… I appreciate very much the passion and talent you brought to the work. You were just superb!

An unexpected bonus was finding out that Wind & Rhythm — “the world’s most listened to wind band radio program” — chose to air our performance of Ticheli’s Korean Folksongs from Jeju Island. The broadcasts took place from January 16-19, 2014, but the program can still be accessed at under “past episodes.”

Midwest Performance CD Order

Last night, a number of you signed the yellow pad after the rehearsal requesting to be part of the CD group order for the Midwest performance in Chicago. If you still desire to be make your order as part of the group, please write back to me at no later than Tuesday morning, Dec. 3rd. By doing so, you will save a couple of dollars. If you don’t order now, you can do an individual order from the Mark Custom website at a later date. Either is fine, and no one is obligated to order.

Housing for Midwest

Most of you have already been in touch regarding your housing plans for Chicago in December. If you haven’t communicated this yet, please do so as soon as possible. Communicate your housing decision by filling in the form below.

All best,
Fred Speck

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Midwest Clinic

What began in a YMCA gymnasium on December 7, 1946 with 120 instrumental music directors from the Chicago area, has been transformed into The Midwest Clinic: An International Band and Orchestra Conference. Today, this professional gathering boasts the largest and most geographically diverse attendance of any clinic of its kind in the world. Recent Midwest Clinics have been attracting more than 16,000 annual attendees. These participants, representing all 50 states and more than thirty countries, are made up of instrumental music teachers, fine arts administrators, professional musicians, composers and others interested in refining their skills as concert band, jazz band and orchestra musicians, directors and teachers. It’s no surprise that such a rich history has prompted, Richard Crain, President of the Midwest Clinic Board of Directors to refer to the event as the “granddaddy” of all instrumental music conventions.

A hallmark of the Midwest Clinic has been the concert performances of fine ensembles from throughout the United States and abroad. These ensembles are selected to represent various categories, including public school ensembles, military bands and orchestras, adult groups and chamber ensembles. This year, the Louisville Concert Band has been selected to perform at this prestigious event. The concert will take place on Thursday, December 19, 2013 at 1:30 p.m. in Ballroom W375E of McCormick Place in Chicago, Illinois.

Music Unwound: Copland and Mexico

On March 28, 2013, sixteen members of Chamber Winds Louisville performed on a special concert that featured live music intermingled with commentary by American-music scholar Joseph Horowitz, Carol A. Hess, an expert on the music of Spain and the Americas and Roberto Kolb-Neuhaus, an internationally-known authority on the music of Silvestre Revueltas. Other performers on the program included faculty artist Bruce Heim, horn (along with Jon Gustely, Diana Morgen and Steven Causey, all horn players in the Louisville Orchestra), faculty artist Paul York, cello and special guest performer, Grace Baugh-Bennett who performed the Copland Piano Variations (1930). The focus on the concert was to share not only Copland’s music, but selections by other composers who influenced Copland. Chamber Winds Louisville performed two works on the program, Ocho por Radio (1936) and Xochipilli: An Imagined Aztec Music (1940) by Carlos Chávez.

Louisville was the first of five host cities to participate in the “Music Unwound,” a project supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities. Associated events included programs and exhibits by the Louisville Orchestra, the Louisville Visual Arts Association and the University of  Louisville School of Music.