Wind Orchestra February 28, 2024

Kopleff Recital Hall


Dr. Adam F. Dalton, conductor

Meeka Sivilay Smith, graduate assistant conductor


Rosano Galante

2' 46"

Although fairly brief in duration, Landscapes features plenty of power and musical depth. Originally a work for brass quintet, it wasn't until many years later that the full band version took shape. Perfect as a concert opener for mature players, this is a dynamic way to showcase your ensemble.

Mr. Galante has served as orchestrator for over seventy-five studio films including, Venom: Let There be Carnage, Rambo: Last Blood, Charlie’s Angles, Ready or Not, A Quiet Place, A Quiet Place 2, The Mummy, Logan, Sausage Party, Smurfs: The Lost Village, First They Killed My Father, Ben Hur, The Shallows, Fantastic 4, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Gods of Egypt, Prisoners, The Wolverine, 3:10 to Yuma, A Good Day to Die Hard, Trouble with the Curve, The Thing, Final Destination 5, The Homesman, Don’t be Afraid of the Dark, Knowing, Max Payne, The Little Mermaid: Ariel’s Beginning, Alvin and the Chipmunks, Live Free or Die Hard, Red Eye, Die Bluthochzeit, The Tuxedo, Tuesdays with Morrie, among many others.

Urban Dances

Erik Morales

4' 57"

Urban Dances is a piece based on a concept developed in one of my earlier works, entitled Rhythmata. The most important part of this work is rhythm.

The rhythms used are inspired by and found in much of today's popular music. My biggest challenge was to find ways to employ these rhythms in a manner appropriate to serious concert band literature. The melodic and thematic elements are important, but play a secondary (and largely supportive) role.

In many instances, the thematic material will float over the rhythmic pulse, creating a double-time feel. The pulse of this work is persistent and lively throughout.

Elegy for a Young American

Ronald Lo Presti


Elegy for a Young American is a testament to the vision and commitment of our 35th president, as well as a deeply emotional meditation on his tragic passing. The work is often described as moving through the various stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. Interestingly, the idea of a codified progression of grief was not put forward until 1969, five years after the premiere, but there is no doubt that the piece travels through many of the emotional states felt by so many Americans in November of 1963. Gentle, homophonic choruses give way to discordant outbursts and massive climaxes as the composer struggles to make sense of Kennedy’s death. Finally, the anguish settles into a peaceful resolution, suggesting that even in the face of tragedy there is some room for acceptance.

- Program Note by Kevin Simpson for the United States Army Band concert program, 23 February 2019

Watch this video that talks about the history and theory of Elegy for a Young American

Magnolia Star

Steve Danyew

6' 32"

In Magnolia Star, I explore various ways to use these pitches in harmonies, melodies, and timbres, creating a diverse set of ideas that will go beyond sounds that we typically associate with the blues scale. I didn’t want to create a “blues” piece, but rather a piece in my own musical voice that uses and pays homage to the blues scale.

Nearly all of the pitches used in Magnolia Star fit into the concert C blues scale. It is interesting to note that embedded within the C blues scale are both a C minor triad, an Eb minor triad, and an Eb major triad. I explore the alternation of these tonal areas right from the start of the piece, and continue to employ them in different ways throughout the entire work.

Another influence was trains and the American railroad. The railroad not only provides some intriguing sonic ideas, with driving rhythms and train-like sonorities, but it was also an integral part of the growth of jazz and blues in America. In the late 19th century, the Illinois Central Railroad constructed rail lines that stretched from New Orleans and the “Delta South” all the way north to Chicago.

Many southern musicians traveled north via the railroad, bringing “delta blues” and other idioms to northern parts of the country. The railroad was also the inspiration for countless blues songs by a wide variety of artists. Simply put, the railroad was crucial to the dissemination of jazz and blues in the early 20th century.

Magnolia Star was an Illinois Central train that ran from New Orleans to Chicago with the famous Panama Limited in the mid 20th century.

Learn more about this piece from conductor, Dr. Adam Dalton