The Lufkin Community Band and the East Texas Wind Symphony will present an afternoon of music with historical significance in the annual spring concert scheduled for 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, May 1 at the Temple Theater on the AC Campus.
Featuring a bevy of area musicians from all walks of life and various areas of expertise, the Lufkin Community Band’s performances always offer a mixture of the traditional – along with a little of the unexpected. Music Director and Conductor David E. Smith spends months compiling arrangements to fit a specific theme – in this year’s case, a few time-honored compositions originally composed as tributes or memorials.
The concert’s opening will set the tone: A stirring rendition of “The Star Spangled Banner” arranged by Damrosch/Sousa and performed by both bands.
The East Texas Wind Symphony will then perform the following selections:
“El Camino Real” (Alfred Reed), was commissioned by, and dedicated to, the 581st Air Force Band and its commander, Lt. Col Ray E. Toler. The title represents the Spanish term “The Royal Road” and was used to describe any road built under jurisdiction of the Spanish crown. Several Texas roads follow the original route of the U.S. section of the El Camino Real de los Tejas,
“O Mangum Mysterium” (Morten Lauridsen), one of the world’s most performed and recorded compositions since its 1994 premiere by the Los Angeles Master Chorale. About his setting, Lauridsen writes, “For centuries, composers have been inspired by the beautiful O Magnum Mysterium text with its depiction of the birth of the new-born King amongst the lowly animals and shepherds. This affirmation of God’s grace to the meek and the adoration of the Virgin are celebrated in my setting through a quiet song of profound inner joy.”
“The Lake in the Sky” (Alan Lee Silva), inspired by passages in the journals of Sir Francis Drake, who was commissioned in 1577 by Queen Elizabeth I to explore the Pacific Coast of North America. During his expedition he met Native American people (“Quas”) on the coast of California who told him about a large body of water high in the mountains to the north. They called it the “big lake in the sky,” which eventually was named Lake Tahoe.
The Lufkin Community Band will then take the stage to perform the following selections:
“Chosen Destiny” (Charles Booker), was commissioned to honor Mark G. Pounds for his 18 years as Director of Bands at Ashdown High School in Ashdown, Arkansas. The composition begins with a rhythmic motive played by the Timpani representing the strength and character of Pounds, and this motive permeates the entire music.
“The Woodwind Polka” (Andy Clark), based on the “Clarinet Polka”, which has been a popular favorite with performers and audiences for well over a century, but popular band composer and arranger Andy Clark asked, “Why should just the clarinet player get to have all the fun?” In this arrangement, now renamed, “The Woodwind Polka”, Clark has arranged this classic melody so that the whole woodwind section of the Band can get in on the action.
“Alamo March” (Will Huff), pays tribute to the most significant event in Texas history. One hundred years ago, famous composer and bandleader Henry Fillmore, using he pen name “Will Huff”, wrote a tribute march to this event. Arranger David Miller found a 1916 printing of this march, and wanted to program it in recognition of this historic date, but the instrumentation of bands 100 years ago was entirely different – so Miller arranged the march to fit what modern bands perform.
The show wraps up with a combined performance from the two bands: “An American Elegy” (Frank Tichele) was commissioned by the Columbine Commissioning Fund, a special project sponsored by the Alpha Iota Chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi at the University of Colorado on behalf of the Columbine High School Band. The composition is, above all, an expression of hope. It was “Composed in memory of those who lost their lives at Columbine High School on April 20, 1999, and to honor the survivors.” In the Conductor’s Score the composer adds, “It is offered as a tribute to their great strength and courage in the face of a terrible tragedy. I hope the work can also serve as one reminder of how fragile and precious life is and how intimately connected we all are as human beings.”
Sunday’s performance will take place at 2:30 p.m. in the Temple Theater on the Angelina College campus. Tickets are $4 for adults and $3 for seniors, students and children.