Stephen F. Austin State University

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SFA's Wind Symphony, Symphonic Band to perform

January 29, 2016 - Robbie Goodrich
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band at Stephen F. Austin State University will present a concert at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 9, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

A presentation of the SFA College of Fine Arts and School of Music, the concert will both celebrate the great tradition of American music and feature European folk tunes.

The Symphonic Band, under the direction of Dr. James Dreiling, will begin the performance with a four-movement suite by famed band composer Frank Ticheli entitled "Simple Gifts: Four Shaker Songs."

"This piece exemplifies the beauty, elegance and simplicity of Shaker folk songs and dances," said Dreiling, who joins the music faculty this spring as interim assistant director of bands.

"Evensong," composed by William Harbison, is the ensemble's second piece and brings a modern twist to the sacred music tradition. The term "evensong" refers to a service of evening prayers, psalms and canticles taking place in late afternoon or evening in the western Christian tradition.

The Symphonic Band will conclude its celebration of American music with one of the most popular marches by lesser-known composer Frederick Ellsworth Bigelow. "Our Director," published in 1895, is only one of three works by Bigelow but has become standard march repertoire, according to Dreiling.

The Wind Symphony, directed by Dr. Tamey Anglley, will open its portion of the concert with the Norwegian march "Valdres" by Johannes Hanssen, arranged by Glenn C. Bainum. The title has both geographic and musical connotations, according Anglley, who is serving as interim associate director of bands at SFA.

"Valdres is a beautiful region in Norway between Oslo and Bergen," she said. "Hanssen quotes an old signature fanfare for the Valdres Battalion, as well as other melodies derived from a Hardanger fiddle tune and folk tunes. It was first performed in 1904 by the band of the second regiment of Norway, with the composer playing the baritone horn himself."

The Wind Symphony will end the concert with Vincent Persichetti's Symphony No. 6 for Band, Op. 69. This four-movement work is considered a standard work in the band repertoire, Anglley said.

"Persichetti became a champion for the band movement by composing music of distinct quality specifically for band," Anglley said. Persichetti stated, "The concert band is a medium of expression distinct from, but not subordinate to, any other medium. You can get lots of things out of a band that you just can't get out of an orchestra." His Symphony No. 6 was completed during the winter of 1955-56 and was premiered at the Music Educators National Conference in 1956. The first public performance was by the Goldman Band in New York with Persichetti conducting.

Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit www.finearts.sfasu.edu.