July 28, 2011

More wind music today on the Composers Datebook, this time describing the events which led to Sousa leaving the Marine Band to form his own touring band. As you'll hear, the reason for this was, in part, due to the band leader's personal finances.

July 25, 2011

In a never-ending search for new material for this blog- material that embodies the character and interests of the UMD Wind Orchestra, I have come across a feature in the New York Times Opinion section online, called "The Score". According its website,

"The Score features the writings of composers on their work and the issues involved in creating music in the 21st century, as the t...

July 23, 2011

Below is bio of the modern violinist/composer phenom Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR). He will be performing a new piece commissioned by UMWO this coming spring at College Park, and its sure to be an excellent concert! This is from the bio on his website.

"Having carved a reputation for himself as an innovative composer, performer, violinist, and band leader, Haitian-American artist Da...

July 18, 2011

Our March 29th concert will feature one of today's most interesting characters in classical music: Daniel Bernard Roumain (or DBR). This will surely be an interesting concert to say the least: not only will UMWO be premiering a new piece that the ensemble has commissioned from him, but the composer himself will be performing (violin) with the ensemble. This is the first of a few blog p...

July 12, 2011

I've recently come across Igor Stravinsky's Obituary written by Donal Henahan, and printed in the New York Times upon the composer's death in 1971. Though it might seem a bit cryptic as material for this blog, it is actually a very interesting read. For those that are Stravinsky enthusiasts,history buffs, or are less acquainted with Stravinsky's life and works, it's a great way to step...

July 10, 2011

Robert Austin Boudreau is a singular figure in the world of professional conductors. He is the founder and conductor of the American Wind Symphony Orchestra, an ensemble which travels to various cities within the US and abroad on a barge which serves as a floating stage. Typically, the barge ("Point and Counterpoint II") will float up to a suitable river bed in a city and perform its c...

July 6, 2011

Last week a question was raised in Washington regarding whether or not to continue the funding for our nations Military ensembles at their current levels, indeed proposing to cut by 37.5%. This is a serious matter, and would eliminate many bands around the country and abroad. One group in particular is the Air Force Band of Liberty, stationed at Hanscom AFB in Massachusetts. This is a...

July 5, 2011

As a tribute to the 4th of July holiday weekend, today's post will feature Keith Brion, one the foremost scholars/conductors of the music of John Philip Sousa, who holds a unique and important place in the world of conductors. He built the early part of his career primarily as a director of orchestral pops concerts, and since the founding of his New Sousa Band,...

June 29, 2011

It is important to, once in a while, step back and recognize how the wind ensemble has grown in popularity and has become the focus of serious composers of the last few decades. Today we will focus on Frank L. Battisti.

Mr. Battisti has been a driving force for the improvement of the wind band/ensemble. Even in his early appointment as director of bands at a Ithaca High School, he encou...

June 26, 2011

Although at first glance this unique composer may not seem to belong on a blog dedicated to the wind band, but actually, Ken Ueno is exactly the kind of composer that the University of Maryland Wind Orchestra is interested in, and it is very possible that one might see his music on one of our programs in the future. His past experiences and interests, which have led him to becoming a c...

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