The West Virginia University Wind Symphony, under the direction of John Hendricks III , will perform a winter concert at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 10, in the Creative Arts Center’s Lyell B. Clay Concert Theatre.
The concert coincides with the annual WVU High School Invitational Honor Bands event being held through Saturday at the Creative Arts Center , and members of the Honor Bands will also perform.
Appearing as guest conductors will be WVU Director of Bands Emeritus Don Wilcox; Kenneth W. Dye, director of bands at the University of Notre Dame; and Bob Scott, director of bands at Capital High School, the Magnet School for the Performing Arts in Charleston.
The program will open withGodspeed!by Stephen Melillo. Written in 1998, this work is dedicated to the Muncie Central High School Band in Indiana . The composer describes it as a mixture of youthful exhilaration, the flight of an inviolable spirit, hectic confusions and innocent zeal.
It will be followed by Arthur Sullivan’sPineapple Poll,a ballet that is a spoof of the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas. The story evolves around Pineapple Poll and her colleagues, who are all madly in love with the captain of the good ship H.M.S. Hot Cross Bun and disguise themselves as sailors to gain admittance to the ship. The score is a patchwork quilt of tunes from Gilbert and Sullivan operettas. The work was first performed in 1959 by the Sadler Wells Theater Ballet. It will be conducted by Dye.
An American Elegy,by Frank Ticheli, was composed in memory of those who lost their lives at Columbine High School on April 20, 1999, and to honor the survivors and their families. It is offered as a tribute to their strength and courage in the face of tragedy and as a reminder that life is fragile and precious. Scott will be the guest conductor for this piece.
At the end of the first half, Wilcox will conduct members of the WVU High School Honor Bands inPolkaandFuguefrom the operaSchwanda, the Bagpiperby Jaromir Weinberger, which premiered in Prague in 1927 and became internationally famous. ThePolkaandFugue,taken from the opera for use as a concert piece, has become even more successful. Based on a Czech folk tale, the story involves Schwanda, the master bagpiper and Babinsky, a robber who leads Schwanda on a series of adventures. ThePolkais taken from a scene in which Schwanda plays for Queen Iceheart, who is waiting for someone who can melt her heart.
Following intermission, the Wind Symphony will present the first movement ofSymphony of Psalmsby Igor Stravinsky, as well as an excerpt from the third movement with the University Choir, conducted by Kathleen Shannon. In 1930, Stravinsky was commissioned to provide this work for the 50th anniversary of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
Stravinsky’s entireSymphony of Psalmswill be performed during the WVU Choral Concert to be held Sunday, Feb. 12, at 3:15 p.m. in the Clay Concert. Tickets for this concert are available at the WVU Box Office.
American Overture for Bandby Joseph Wilcox Jenkins is composed in the style of folk tunes of the Tidewater area of southern Maryland . Completed in 1955, this brief work is written in a freely adapted sonata form that is full of model flavorings, vigorous rhythms and fanfare-like horn passages. Jenkins studied composition with Thomas Canning, former professor and composer/artist-in-residence with the WVU Division of Music. This piece will be conducted by Dearl J. Drury, WVU associate director of bands.
Next on the program will beIn the Spring, At the Time When Kings Go Off to Warby David Holsinger. The winner of the 1986 American Band Association Ostwald Award, this programmatic work is based on Bible passages depicting the assault of King David’s army, led by his commander Joab, under the cities of the Ammonites, and the triumphal return of David’s army to the walls of Jerusalem .
The last piece on the program will beWhip and Spurby Thomas S. Allen, which is typical of the entertainment music of the early part of the 20th century. The traditional use ofWhip and Spuris for equestrian acts or trained acts featuring big cats in the center ring.
For tickets to the WVU Wind Symphony Concert, call the Mountainlair Box Office at 304-293-SHOW.