01 November 2008

Convocation People's Quartet Returns

It has been almost two months since my last post. This hasn't been for a lack of activity. Jody and I spent nearly a month in Italy–more on this in another post–and on September 29th Fall classes at SOU began.

Each Friday the Department of Music presents Convocation. The October 24th Convocation featured a piece by composition student Federico Behnke and the return of the People's Quartet. The photo below show Associate Professor Terry Longshore performing Federico's piece.

The People's Quartet has been on and off for three years with core members Nick Waroff, Tang Di and Keith Smelcer trying out a third member. In the past it has always been the tenor saxophone chair with a new person. This year I decided to try something different. Sean Goff has enthusiastically joined the quartet and rather than plugging him on tenor I asked him to play baritone and moved Keith to tenor. The formula seems to be working as the People's Quartet has become a first-rate ensemble. At convocation they performed Suite Hellénique–watch for the youtube video. They are also working on Grave et Presto by Rivier and the Gotkovsky Saxophone Quartet.

During the recital tenor saxophonist, Keith Smelcer, discovered the recital hall's magic stand. This is the new music stand that has a loose top. Each Siskiyou Saxophone Orchestra rehearsal has one member finding they are using the magic stand. Typically one pulls the top off the stand to adjust to an appropriate height when the entire top comes off and throws music all over the stage. It is particurly affective during a recital as Keith shows in the photo. With the orchestra it has become a type of "musical chairs." We have a pool to guess the date in which the magic stand will be fixed.

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