ASU Wind Bands

ASU’s Wind Bands season represents tradition, innovation

By

Lynne MacDonald

ASU’s Wind Bands are presenting timeless masterworks, cutting-edge world premieres and everything in between in this year's upcoming season. Tradition and innovation will meet, and occasionally collide, in what will be an artistically rewarding year for everyone.

Season highlights include Joe Alessi, principal trombone of the New York Philharmonic; Joshua Gardner, associate professor in the ASU School of Music and renowned clarinetist; and the U.S. premiere of Kenley Kristofferson's "Transcendent Light."

This year’s major concert is on Feb. 22 as part of the College Band Directors National Association national conference that is hosted by the ASU School of Music. The ASU Wind Orchestra and its conductor, Gary Wayne Hill, will feature world premieres by John Mackey and Steven Bryant, music by Roshanne Etezady and the amazing artistry of singer Lindsay Kesselman.

The ASU bands in the Herberger Institute School of Music regularly venture beyond the campus and embark on activities that embed music making in the community — from visiting schools and teaching children, to informal concerts for hospitals, shelters, retirement communities and community events.  The history of the bands dates back to 1915 when founding director Lillian Williams organized a band for the purpose of training prospective teachers in instrumental music.

The ASU bands program consists of the Wind Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, Concert Band, Philharmonia and the ASU Marching Band. The program’s current leadership is Gary W. Hill, director of bands; Jason Caslor, associate director of bands and orchestras; and James G. Hudson, director of athletic bands.

All concerts are free admission unless otherwise noted. Tickets are available through the Tempe Center for the Arts and Scottsdale Center for the Arts box offices for ticketed performances. Take a peek and save the dates!

Wind Orchestra and Wind Ensemble
"Reflections"
Gary Hill and Jason Caslor, conductors
7:30 p.m. Sept. 25
ASU Gammage

Opening the season with an evening of music by Husa, Holst, Wagner, Sousa and more.

Wind Ensemble and Mountain Ridge Wind Ensemble
Gary Hill and Jason Caslor, conductors
7:30 p.m. Sept. 26
Mountain Ridge High School

The ASU Wind Ensemble heads off campus to share the stage with the Mountain Ridge High School Wind Ensemble.

Wind Orchestra and ASU Choirs
“Sacred and Profane”
7:30 p.m. Oct. 16
Tempe Center for the Arts

Featuring works by Dello Joio, Gjeilo and Stravinsky.

Philharmonia and Concert Band
7:30 p.m. Oct. 17
ASU Gammage

Our first concert of the year, featuring Banilingyu Ban, winner of the 2018 ASU School of Music Concerto Competition.

Wind Orchestra and Wind Ensemble
"Brass on the Lake"
Gary Hill and Jason Caslor, conductors
7:30 p.m. Nov. 7
Tempe Center for the Arts

Featuring the world-renowned Joe Alessi, principal trombone of the New York Philharmonic, performing works by Bryant, Grantham, King, Marshall and more.

Philharmonia and Concert Band
7:30 p.m. Nov. 20
ASU Gammage

The ASU Concert Band and Philharmonia come together to present an eclectic mix of music.

Wind Orchestra
“Beyond the Norm”

7:30 p.m. Nov. 28
Katzin Concert Hall

Guest conductor Fredrick M. Brown leads an evening of chamber music for winds with a variety of rarely heard and new chamber music.

Wind Ensemble and Concert Band
7:30 p.m. Feb. 5
Tempe Center for the Arts

Band music abounds this night, including the consortium premiere of Robert Spittal's “Diversions,” featuring guest soloist and ASU professor of clarinet Joshua Gardner.

Wind Orchestra
2019 CBDNA National Conference
“SHOUTOUT!”
7:30 p.m. Feb. 22
ASU Gammage

Guest composers Steven Bryant and John Mackey and soprano Lindsay Kesselman join the ASU Wind Orchestra for an evening of tributes, watershed works and world premieres.

Wind Orchestra and Wind Ensemble
"Gone with the Winds"
Gary Hill and Jason Caslor, conductors
7:30 p.m. April 3
Tempe Center for the Arts

ASU School of Music faculty and students are featured throughout this concert.

Philharmonia and Concert Band
7:30 p.m. April 16
Tempe Center for the Arts

Join us for our final concert of the season.

Wind Ensembles and ASU Choirs
"An American Festival"
7:30 p.m. April 22
Scottsdale Center for the Arts

The ASU Choral Union, Barrett Choir and Wind Ensemble present a program featuring the U.S. premiere of "Transcendent Light" by Kenley Kristofferson and works by Aaron Copland, Eric Whitacre and others.