Woodwind ensembles recital builds teamwork


Katelyn McKenney

Multiple ensembles performed in the recital.

Surrounded by the majestic atmosphere of War Memorial Chapel, woodwind instrumentalists performed a series of ensembles on March 15.  

The concert began at 5:30 p.m. with an opening prayer by Esther Waite, a professor in the department of instrumental studies. The first number, “Valse di Bravura, Op. 33,” was performed by two flutists, Blair Carrier and JoAnna Stevens, and a pianist, Matthew Holmes. The second piece, “maya” by Ian Clarke, was performed by the same musicians. 

For the third piece, Carrier was joined by Amanda Townsend on the oboe and Lydia Scroggins on the clarinet for a song entitled “Aubade.” “Spanish Rondo” was the title of the fourth piece; it was played by Stevens, with Waite also on the flute and Holmes back on the piano.  

“Cantique de Jean Racine, Op. 11,” the last and most impressive piece, included all the musicians that had performed in the previous smaller ensembles while also including several more musicians. This group of eight instrumentalists performed using only flutes, with the supporting accompaniment by Holmes on the piano.  

Waite said the strength of having the smaller ensembles is “an opportunity to showcase some of our woodwind students playing in small groups without a conductor. … I also like to use this opportunity to invite some other students who don’t normally play with an ensemble to be able to get that small ensemble experience.”  

Also commenting on what the ensembles were to accomplish, she said, “We are hoping to share the exciting literature written for woodwind instruments and to show the potential for others to join them in future concerts so that they can perform in small ensembles and have that feeling of achievement and camaraderie.”