Songs for Tomorrow GSU Wind Orchestra

Tuesday, November 14th, 2023

7 P.M.

Rialto Center for the Arts

Through the Looking Glass

Jess Langston Turner (b. 1983)

Meeka Smith, graduate assistant conductor

Southern Songbook (2011)

Kevin Day (b. 1996)

The Ascension

Robert W. Smith (1958 - 2023)

The Ascension is the third of four movements of The Divine Comedy. The movement begins with Dante on the Mountain of Purgatory. Having been instructed and purified in Purgatory, he is prepared for his journey to Paradise. Beatrice, his guide, lifts her eyes toward the sun. Following her example, Dante looks to the sun and is at the moment transformed ("trans-humanized") in preparation for his great adventure. He is surprised to discover wonderful music, the music of the spheres, surrounding them. Swifter than thought, their flight of incredible speed begins. Dante and Beatrice, accompanied by sounds of wondrous beauty and intensity, ascent to the Sphere of Fire.

- Program Note by composer


David Maslanka (1943 - 2017)

"Libera me, Domine, de morte aeterna in die illa tremenda” (“Deliver me, Lord, from death eternal on that fearful day")



Dr. Dalton is a native of Virginia, where he attended James Madison University and earned a Bachelor of Music in Music Education. After graduating, he moved to Atlanta, GA, where he taught high school at Milton High School, an extensive 5A program in Georgia. He then accepted a Graduate Teaching Assistantship at The University of Alabama, where he received his Master of Arts in Music Education and a Doctor of Musical Arts in Instrumental Conducting. Dr. Dalton performed with The Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps for three years earning two world championships and a gold medal in individual and ensemble. He also marched in various independent winter guards in the southeast, consistently making finals at Winter Guard International. His designing and teaching experience includes the 2008 World Champion Phantom Regiment, The Carolina Crown Drum and Bugle Corps, The Cadets, Troopers, and Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps. He is featured on the WGI video, Toss, and served as a clinician and performer for the first everSpinfest Clinic, an annual educational event sponsored by WGI. Dr. Dalton maintains a busy schedule as a designer, consultant, and adjudicator for marching bands and indoor groups nationally and internationally.

Dr. Adam Dalton was the Director of Bands and Associate Professor of Music at Marshall University. He oversaw all aspects of a comprehensive band program, including concert bands, the Marching Thunder, and basketball pep bands. He also conducted the Marshall Wind Symphony, taught courses in music education and conducting, and served as the recruitment director for the music department. Before this position, Dr. Dalton served as Director of Athletic Bands at Marshall for five years.

Dr. Dalton worked with every ensemble at The University of Alabama and was a featured conductor for the 2013 All-State Festival performance with The Alabama Wind Ensemble. His high school band received superior ratings at the Large Group Performance Association. As a percussionist, Dr. Dalton performed with the Alabama Wind Ensemble for four years, including their ten-day tour of Italy in 2012. He is a founding member of the Alabama Winds, a community band based in Birmingham, AL. He has also participated in the Alabama Wind Ensemble recording project, The Glass Bead, available on Albany Records.

Meeka Smith


Meeka Smith is currently pursuing the Master of Music in Wind Band Conducting degree at Georgia State University under the guidance of Robert J. Ambrose. As a Graduate Teaching Assistant for the University Bands, she conducts and coaches a variety of ensembles, assists with undergraduate conducting instruction, and supports the operations of a large, comprehensive band program.

Prior to her move to Georgia, Ms. Smith served as a band director in the Mountain Home (AR) School District, where she conducted the junior high band, taught beginning woodwind classes and assisted with all aspects of the high school band program. Along with her official duties, she assisted with the guard programs and trained marching band student conductors.

Meeka graduated Cum Laude from Arkansas Tech University with the Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education. Her primary teachers were Dan Belongia and Karen Futterer. During her tenure at Arkansas Tech, Meeka served as a student conductor for various ensembles, was as an Undergraduate Teaching Assistant, and served on local and district-wide executive boards of the Tau Beta Sigma music fraternity.