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 Post subject: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Bands.
PostPosted: Fri Jan 17, 2014 11:58 pm 
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COLONEL
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I have just this moment made up my mind to write on this topic, one which is dear to my heart.
The love of Brass sound has been with me since well before the age of 5 when I trotted alongside my father during our weekend walks. He used to stride to the nearest park with a band rotunda, and enjoy listening to the music.

I was fortunate to live in an area where the standards of brass band playing were excellent, and at that time the Coventry City Salvation Army Band were amongst the premier bands in England. We had huge factories both to the north and south of us, and they had large brass bands, ones which you will recognise, as they were household names at the time. Most are still there, but with changes of ownership and amalgamations many of the names have changed slightly.

Sorry---that was a bit long -winded! If you have read my posts will know of my favourite ensemble---"German Brass", and I will return to them later, with examples!

However today’s post has been triggered off by finding the video I am going to produce, earlier in this week. I have found it to have qualities which haunt me, especially some of the solo bits.

The ensemble is the “Georg Solti Brass Ensemble” and the piece is Mozart’s” Symphony in G minor".

It starts off fairly boldly and traditionally, and you can be excused if you wonder what I find so appealing. But---wait! It continues with a brief haunting solo of particular tonal beauty. From there on there is a transparency which allows you to appreciate the harmonies within the arrangement. They are spot on with their intonation and timing, too. I like it, and I hope that you do, too.




I will include another video of theirs which I like, but which doesn’t grab me in the same way as the first. However they do justice to rendering a brass account of “Zadok the Priest”. I feel that this develops as it is played, and good use is made of the instruments that they have---4 instruments of trumpet variety, a horn, a tuba and 4 trombones.




Enjoy! I will be back soon!

Regards,

Polly


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2014 6:55 pm 
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JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
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pollyp78 wrote:
I will include another video of theirs which I like, but which doesn’t grab me in the same way as the first. However they do justice to rendering a brass account of “Zadok the Priest”. I feel that this develops as it is played, and good use is made of the instruments that they have---4 instruments of trumpet variety, a horn, a tuba and 4 trombones.




Ah that great Handelian instrument... the Tuba! :lol:

Anyway I can't say I was too enamoured with that arrangement Polly.. :shrug:

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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2014 6:19 am 
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COLONEL
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Hi TMT,
No, I agree that the arrangement of "Zadok the Priest" doesn't send me into raptures, but it wasn't so bad considering their instrumental limitations!!! As the piece proceeded I thought that it got better as to harmony/tonal values etc.
Anyway to my mind it didn't bear comparison with what they did to the Mozart. Sorry that you feel Handel was shortchanged! :(

I am feeling my way with this topic, ( as I do/did with the Horn and Trumpet topics)---I am bound to make some "stuff-ups' and displease you at times, but it can't be helped---and I do my little best! :)

Kindest regards,

Polly.


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2014 5:54 pm 
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2nd LIEUTENANT
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Hi Polly
Excellent brass group. Round here brass groups only play music written since 1950 by English speakers and an un-notated percussion part is essential "to maintain the beat". (I thought that was what the conductor (and the composer) did!).
The Mozart worked (surprisingly) well with the G minor passion conveyed well.
Zadok was played well, but didn't translate as well from its original conception - but I think we're all agreed on that.
Canadian brass have made some "fun" recordings of baroque stuff that often work well.

Adam


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 3:16 am 
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COLONEL
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Thankyou for your positive comments Phlogiston! :)

I am glad that you liked the Mozart---it had some nice nuances to the arrangement, I thought----and I still keep having bits of it float into my mind.

The Canadian Brass Ensemble is already on my list and will take its turn shortly! I have amassed quite a few groups and bands that please me with their tonality and musicality, in my browsings.

It is so nice to have a Brass -lover stand up to be counted. Thankyou! :)

Kindest regards,

Polly.


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 10:00 am 
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The "German Brass" Ensemble

I have been viewing the video clips by the ”German Brass” Ensemble for so long that many of their number seem to be like old friends. Klaus Wallendorf is one of these, and he's also a member of the Berlin Philharmoniker and one of their friendly Horn Ensemble too.

The standard of playing is extremely high and all are consummate professionals who belong to leading German Orchestras or are Academics--- professors or lecturers at various Tertiary Institutes.

The original group of five which began to perform in 1974 was eventually enlarged to the present 10 performers in 1985 allowing their repertoire to widen.

Enrique Crespo and Matthias Höfs, together, were responsible for the arrangements until 2011 when there were some differences within the group and Crespo left to set up a rival Ensemble.

''German Brass" instrumentalists form a cohesive group, achieving a wonderful collective sound. They are known for their technical perfection, musicality, tonality and sensitivity to their material. They also display a friendly ease with one another, which is reflected in their playing.

Mostly I prefer their performance of classical music but they relax and have fun, too, and also play popular music and that of a lighter nature. I have already attached one example of this, “Peanut Vendor” in an earlier topic!

Today I am offering “German Brass Christmas Oratorio BWV 248, No 64 “and to follow there is "Bach BWV 972 after Vivaldi Violin Concerto RV 230”. This latter video has a truly beautiful section played on the trombone by Enrico Crespo and picked up by the piccolo trumpet.






Those of you who are Brass players will appreciate the wonderful technical expertise of this group. Lacking that ability myself I just revel in the sheer tonal beauty and fine nuances to be discovered!

Enjoy!

Regards,

Polly.


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 9:20 pm 
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2nd LIEUTENANT
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Again, nice playing with some style, even if not quite the Ur-text.

Adam


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 12:22 am 
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COLONEL
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Hi Phlogiston,

You sent me scurrying for a dictionary to find out the meaning of "ur-text"!!! You are the 2nd CMM erudite member to send Poor Little Polly dictionary-wards---on the other occasion it was Digiti! I had guessed at the meaning , through the context, but I like to be sure!

A lot of German Brass videos have seemingly diasppeared into Outer Space, a pity, as they were ones that I particularly liked. One video being owned by Enrique Crespo who has withdrawn it on the grounds of copyright, now that he is estranged from the group. Not all venues suit brass ensembles and there are videos which I rejected because of the recorded quality or excessive reverb.

However I have a clip, one which intriguingly intertwines the melodies of "Little Drummer Boy" and "Bolero" I hope that you will like it as much as I do. I suspect that the jazzy inserts have a lot to do with the arranger,Enrique Crespo's Latin American background!





I also found a fun video of a photo-shoot, probably advertising the CD in the offing, and it had a background of "German Brass" playing Wagner. There is some hearty brass sound---well, enough to gladden the heart of this Brass-lover. I was sorry that the conversations between Matthias Höfs and Wolfgang Gaag had no English subtitles. However there are members with a knowledge of the German languauge who will understand.






Enjoy!

Kindest regards,

Polly.


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Sat Feb 08, 2014 12:27 am 
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The Canadian Brass Ensemble.

This ensemble was founded in 1970, with Chuck Daellenbach being one of the co-founders; he is still a member today. Over the years the membership has changed considerably, but with the high calibre of the players they have maintained their reputation as one of the world’s leading brass ensembles.

Indeed, the “Washington Post” considers it to be the leading Brass Ensemble. Their arrangements are nice, with good tonal blending, and with each member being a virtuoso in his own right the result is very pleasant indeed.

Canadian Brass consists of 5 players---2 trumpets, a tuba, a horn and a trombone. They are excited that in January of this year Bernard Scully rejoined to them. He had previously been a very young member from 2004 to 2007 and then left to start his family. His return in 2014 has pleased them all greatly.

Canadian Brass has a heavy International touring programme and has a prolific recording career. So life is full on for its members, but it is evident that besides the classical numbers they excel in they enjoy lighter pieces which are fun to do. It is obvious, in their videos that they all have a great rapport.

I have chosen the first clip, a performance of “Winter’ from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons.”
It is a favourite piece of mine and I feel shows them to advantage, with their nuances and subtlety of inastrumental colour allowed free reign. They perform this beautifully.




Next is "Canon" by Tallis, a quiet composition of sonorous tones and beautiful sounds ---but they can’t help adding a bit of humour to the action .





Light relief is provided as they play Rossini’s “Largo al factotum”. Chuck Daellenbach shows us a great performance on the tuba and at the same time provides the humour.





Some excitement is engendered next, with the performance of “The Flight of the Bumblebee”. Definitely virtuoso playing here!





And finally a composition written for Canadian Brass----“Quintet” by the (late) American Composer Michael Kamen. The beautiful surrroundings of the Elora Rock Quarry, Ontario enhance the sound of this lovely reflective piece.




I think that I have provided sufficient evidence that Canadian Brass are high achievers in the performance world. Enjoy!

Regards,

Pollyp.


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Sat Feb 08, 2014 11:26 pm 
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COLONEL
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Re:- Canadian Brass---an update.

I mentioned that a former member Bernard Scully (horn) had rejoined the Ensemble in January of this year, and the excitement it had caused within the group.

Well, browsing brought more information and a resumé on the career and strengths of Bernard Scully. It gives an indication of the calibre of the Canadian Brass membership. The outgoing hornist is also taking up a prestigious position elsewhere

http://imgartists.com/news/canadian_bra ... rd_scully/

I hope this is of interest to you. I must confess that I take a personal interest in the performers, and especially of the smaller groups----and of certain orchestras, too, !!!

Regards,

Polly.


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2014 11:18 pm 
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COLONEL
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Some afterthoughts on----Canadian Brass!

I thought that I had finished with the Canadian Brass topic---but--- was browsing, looking to see what the outgoing hornist, Eric Reed, looked like and learn a bit about him, and began to find what I deemed to be interesting up-todate stuff on the group!

Firstly there was a website which included a resumé of The Group activities and aims. It was too much to want to type out, so I have included it, as their educational activities are impressive.To the right you will see other interesting aspects that you can bring up, too.

http://canadianbrass.com/about/history/

I also found a long video of their participation in the Festival de Sion in Valais, Suiza, 2012. Canadian Brass perform pieces from their wide repertoire, so it ranges from classical through to the very modern. The brass arrangements are impeccably worked out and tonally pleasing. How about “The Hallelujah Chorus” creeping into “The Saints go Marching Home”?

There is a slight change in the personal, as it is just before Caleb Hudson joined the group and so the light haired trumpet player is Brendon Ridenour . He puts on a virtuoso performance or two during this video.




I enjoyed this video very much---and it showed their versatility, too.

Happy listening, brass-lovers!

Regards,

Polly.


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 9:48 am 
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COLONEL
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Re: Canadian Brass.
I have to apologise for the poor showing on the last posting! The website evidently was due to be replaced and a new one will come online in a day or two. As I perused the non-information and the dates still to come before the website was in operation, I was regaled by music from one of their concerts!
The video attachment was also a YouTube casualty, so is now unavailable for listening.
Regards,
Polly.


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 2:32 am 
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COLONEL
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Returning to German Brass!

I make no apologies for returning to German Brass for the following Samuel Scheidt Suite, in two video clips.

Like so many of my discoveries it came through my browsing for another thread! I was quite blown away by Scheidt’s work and the tonal beauty of the performance .

The composition is Scheidt’s ,“ Suite für Blechbläser . The Ensemble is in its earlier days, although by then it had grown from 5 members (Deutsches Blechbläserquintett), to 10 members in 1985 to enable it to extend its repetoire.

Looking amongst them I can see strange faces, especially amongst the principal members, although I recognise Enrique Crespo, the founding member of 1974. Klaus Wallendorf and Wolfgang Gaag are in charge of horns, and a more youthful Matthias Höfs is in the trumpet line.








It is essentially differerent to the present Ensemble, not having the "snap" and sparkle of todays presentation; but the unity, musicality and beauty of intonation is present.

How did I come to stumble on Samuel Scheidt? Well, I had been listening to an organ piece of his, (that you will hear in due course!), and remembered from some time ago, his pieces played by the Ensemble in its earlier days. The videos were presented by a different uploader, and the view then was a distant one of the stage.

Anyway here are the two video clips I’ve just found and which I should like to share with you.

Enjoy!

Kindest regards,

Pollyp.


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 2:57 am 
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My daughter plays the tuba and it’s a shame that she may never be part of a symphony orchestra. It’s very competitive and some of the best tuba players don’t make it.


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 Post subject: Re: The Beauty of Brass-talented performers-Ensembles & Band
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 6:41 am 
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MAJOR
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Dear Carla_90,

You are correct that orchestral positions are very hard to attain but maybe this video will give some inspiration to your daughter:


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