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Stanly County Concert Band presents fall show Thursday

The Stanly County Concert Band will present its fall concert at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Stanly County Agri-Civic Center.

Offered to the public free of charge, this concert will feature a variety of musical styles from traditional to modern classics.
Selections are as follows:

• “Lincoln Legend” was commissioned by the Lincoln County Honors Band of North Carolina.

It was composed by William Harbinson, who is a professor of music theory at Appalachian State University and former dean of the School of Music.

His works for band appear on the contest/festival literature lists of several states.

“Lincoln Legend” contains expansive harmonies, soaring melodic lines, varied sonorities and striking rhythms that create excitement and expressive lyricism.

• “First Suite in Eb” was composed by British composer and teacher Gustav Holst.

He is perhaps best known for composing “The Planets,” a massive orchestral suite that depicts the astrological character of each known planet. His works for wind band are foundational to the modern wind literature.

Since its first performance in 1920 the “First Suite” has left a mark on band musicians and audiences around the world.

The band will be playing the first movement, Chaconne, for this concert.

• “Rhapsody for Euphonium and Concert Band” was written by James Curnow, who is president, composer and educational consultant for Curnow Music Press, Inc.

He also serves as composer-in-residence emeritus on the faculty of Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky. He is editor of all music publications for The Salvation Army in Atlanta, Georgia.

Curnow is a music composer for concert bands, brass bands, vocal and instrumental solos and ensembles.

Originally written by Curnow as a teaching piece for his own Euphonium students, it is dedicated to the memory of his own teacher, Leonard Falcone.

Since its first release in 1978, this piece has gone on to become a part of the euphonium literature. “Rhapsody for Euphonium” incorporates many opportunities to change the performer both technically and expressively.

Soloist for this concert is Michael Downum, a Pfeiffer University senior music major who hopes to attend graduate school in the fall.

• “Caribbean Rondo” was written by Pierre La Plante, a lifelong student and teacher of music.

This piece is a medley of Caribbean folk songs which includes “Mango Walk,” “Tingalayo” and “Mary Ann.”

Mango Walk refers to working in a mango grove or orchard. Tingalayo is a children’s song about a remarkable donkey who can talk and eat with a knife and fork. But as smart as he is, he’s stubborn like all other donkeys.

“Mary Ann” became best known when Harry Belafonte recorded it during the 1950s calypso craze.

• “Salvation Is Created” was composed by Pavel Tschesnokoff, a Russian composer of sacred choral music.

“Salvation Is Created” was conceived as a six-voice choral work in 1912 for the Russian Orthodox Church. The chorale has been arranged for many different types of ensembles over the years.

Bruce H. Houseknecht arranged the version the band will be playing, which will be directed by Pfeiffer University senior band member Michael Downum.

• “The Greatest Showman,” arranged by Paul Murtha, is a medley of popular songs from the movie, “The Greatest Showman.”

Songs from the soundtrack include “The Greatest Show,” “Never Enough,” “A Million Dreams,” “This Is Me and “From Now On.”

The film is inspired by the story of P.T. Barnum’s creation of the Barnum & Bailey Circus and the lives of its star attractions.

Benj Pasek and Justin Paul wrote all the songs appearing in the film. The song, “This is Me,” won Best Original Song – Motion Picture at the 2017 Golden Globes awards and was nominated for the same award at the 2017 Academy Awards.

• “Resignation” was composed by Ed Kiefer, who served as the director of bands at East Davidson High School and Brown Middle School in Thomasville for 28 years and as director of instrumental music at Pfeiffer University for six years.

Kiefer uses his experience as a middle and high school director to compose music that is playable and fun for students and audiences.

His publications have been performed worldwide and featured at the Midwest Clinic in Chicago.

Kiefer was commissioned by the Dr. David S. Kirby Commission Consortium to write this piece in memory of his friend and colleague, David Kirby. The Stanly County Concert Band and Pfeiffer University Concert Band are members of the consortium. Kirby died suddenly in the summer of 2012.

At the time of his death, Kirby was the director of instrumental music at Pfeiffer. He was also on the board of directors of the Stanly County Concert Band.

Kirby and the board had worked to determine a plan for The Concert Band and Pfeiffer to collaborate to benefit both organizations. That plan was implemented for the 2013 fall semester at Pfeiffer. Pfeiffer students may take Concert Band as a class or participate voluntarily.

Local musicians, educators and community people comprise the remainder of the band personnel. The joint efforts of these members has resulted in an enhanced music experience for all participants and audience members.

Kiefer based this piece on a setting of the hymntune, “Resignation,” which is known as “My Shepherd Will Supply My Need.” It is his hope that people will enjoy this piece and “take from it a greater appreciation for the way making music can express feelings.”

• “Bright Lights” was written by Robert Sheldon, one of the most performed composers of wind band music today. He is director of concert band publications for Alfred Music.

A strong rhythmic pulse drives the tuneful melodies and technical flourishes that are present throughout.

This piece was inspired by John Fesler, a tuba player and founding member of the Community Concert Band of Bloomington/Normal, Illinois.

Fesler was an electrical engineer, so the high energy of the tempo and the staccato eighth note “sparks” provide a nod to this man.

The Stanly County Concert Band is directed by Carmella Hedrick, Pfeiffer University band director; Tim Hedrick, retired Albemarle High School band director; and Frank Poolos, North Stanly High School band director.

The mission of the Stanly County Concert Band is to provide lifelong participation in music and to enhance the cultural life of Stanly County and the region through free or low cost performances.

This project is supported by the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural & Cultural Resources, the Stanly County Arts Council and Uwharrie Bank.

The Stanly County Concert Band is made up of people from the community, local music teachers, Pfeiffer faculty and Pfeiffer students.

Anyone with a love of music who plays a band instrument is welcome to be a part of this ensemble.

Pfeiffer University supports the ensemble by providing rehearsal space, the use of larger band instruments and an extensive music library.

Rehearsals are 6:30-8:15 p.m. Thursdays in the Pfeiffer University Band Room. The Stanly County Concert Band serves as the performance vehicle for Pfeiffer University Band students enhancing musical experiences for both organizations.

Band members invite the community to come and enjoy the concert Thursday.

The band will also participate in Christmas concerts at Pfeiffer University that will be in Henry Pfeiffer Chapel at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 29 and 3 p.m. Dec. 2. This concert will feature the Pfeiffer University Concert Choir, Gospel Choir, Handbell Choir and the Concert Band.

At 7:30 p.m. April 25, 2019 at the Stanly County Agri-Civic Center, the band will present its spring concert. New members are welcome.