What's in Our Library Presented by the GSU Symphonic Wind Ensemble


February 13th, 7:00 PM

Rialto Center for the Arts

Festive Overture (1954/1965)

Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975)

trans. Donald Hunsberger

My Jesus! Oh, What Anguish (1736/1975)

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)

arr. by Alfred Reed

Alfred Reed’s excellent transcription of My Jesus, Oh What Anguish (Mein Jesus, Was Für Seelenweh) is taken from a group of 69 ``Sacred Airs and Songs,’’ each of which exists only in the form of a single line with figured bass. It is considered to be one of the most haunting and poignant expressions of sorrow and compassion to be found in all of Western music.

— program note from publisher

Firefly (2008)

Ryan George (b. 1978)

Roma (2011)

Valerie Coleman (b. 1970)

Douglas Tiller, graduate assistant conductor

A nation without a country is the best way to describe the nomadic tribes known as gypsies, or... the Romani. Their traditions, their language (Roma), legends, and music stretch all over the globe.
Roma is a tribute to that culture, in five descriptive themes, as told through the eyes and hearts of Romani women everywhere: Romani Women, Mystic, Youth, Trickster, and History. The melodies and rhythms are a fusion of styles and cultures: malagueña of Spain, Argentine tango, Arabic music, Turkish folk songs, 3/2 Latin claves, and jazz.

— program note from score


Robert J. Ambrose

Conductor Robert J. Ambrose enjoys a highly successful and diverse career as a dynamic and engaging musician. His musical interests cross many genres and can be seen in the wide range of professional activities he pursues. Dr. Ambrose studied formally at Boston College, Boston University and Northwestern University, where he received the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in conducting.

Dr. Ambrose has conducted professionally across the United States as well as in Australia, Canada, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan. His interpretations have earned the enthusiastic praise of many leading composers including Pulitzer Prize winners Leslie Bassett, Michael Colgrass and John Harbison. Dr. Ambrose is considered an authority on Arnold Schoenberg’s landmark piece Pierrot Lunaire, having conducted it several times in three different countries. He has conducted over two dozen premiere performances including works by Michael Colgrass, Jonathan Newman, Joel Puckett, Christopher Theofanidis and Joseph Turrin. In addition, a recent performance of Igor Stravinsky’s Symphony of Psalms under his direction has been given repeated airings on Georgia Public Radio.

Dr. Ambrose is founder and music director of the Atlanta Chamber Winds a professional dectet specializing in the promotion of music by emerging composers as well as lesser-known works of established composers. Their premiere compact disc, Music from Paris, was released in 2009 on the Albany Records label and has received outstanding reviews in both Fanfare and Gramophone magazines.

As a guitarist, Robert Ambrose has performed in dozens of jazz ensembles, combos, rock bands and pit orchestras. His rock band “Hoochie Suit,” formed with members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, received rave reviews throughout the Chicago area and performed for such distinguished guests as Yo-Yo Ma and Daniel Barenboim.

Dr. Ambrose currently serves as director of bands, associate professor of music and associate director of the School of Music at Georgia State University, a Research I institution of 32,000 students located in Atlanta, GA. As director of bands he conducts the Symphonic Wind Ensemble, maintains a highly selective studio of graduate students in the Master of Music in wind band conducting degree program, and oversees a large, comprehensive band program comprised of four concert ensembles and three athletic bands. He lives in Peachtree City, GA with his wife Sarah Kruser Ambrose, a professional flute player, and daughters Isabelle and Hannah.

Douglas Tiller

Graduate Assistant Conductor

Douglas Tiller is an avid conductor, educator, and instrumentalist active throughout Georgia. Most recently, he served as the Academy Band Director at Strong Rock Christian School where he oversaw a vibrant concert band program in grades fifth through eighth, in addition to serving as the Assistant Director for the award-winning Marching Patriots. Douglas also overhauled the jazz program to include a full jazz band and several combos.

Douglas received his Bachelor of Music from Georgia State University, experiencing success as a competitive chamber musician in the Augmented Triad Mixed Woodwind Trio and the Centennial Saxophone quartet, both groups placing in University and MTNA competitions in addition to presenting at conferences nationwide. Currently, Douglas has returned to Georgia State University to pursue his Master of Music in Wind Band Conducting under Dr. Robert Ambrose.