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Fredonia Wind Ensemble set to tour Long Island
Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Fredonia Wind Ensemble set to tour Long Island

The Fredonia Wind Ensemble

The Fredonia School of Music continues its tradition of ensemble touring this spring with a March 10 to 13 Fredonia Wind Ensemble Tour to Long Island, under the direction of Dr. Paula Holcomb.

The wind ensemble, consisting of the most outstanding wind and percussion players at the university, will visit five school music programs during the four-day tour, allowing broad exposure for the group. Their visits will include workshops and performances at Celia Cruz Bronx High School of Music, Brentwood High School, Dawnwood Middle School, East Meadow High School and the Paul D. Schreiber High School.

The group will perform John Leszyczynski's “Scherzo a la Britten,” Joseph Schwantner's “And the Mountains Rising Nowhere,” and David Maslanka's “A Child's Garden of Dreams.” The group’s program also includes the North American premiere (and the second performance of the piece anywhere) of Luis Serrano Alarcón's “Three Sketches for Wind Ensemble.” They will also play side-by- side concerts with the host school wind ensembles.

The public is invited to attend two free evening performances on Tuesday, March 10 at 7 p.m. at the Lehman College Campus Music Building at 50 Bedford Park Blvd West, Bronx, and Thursday, March 12 at 8 p.m. at East Meadow High School at 101 Carman Ave., East Meadow.

"We are very excited to have the opportunity to perform for and, literally, side-by-side with, the superb Long Island high schools’ musicians," said Holcomb. "To share this fantastic music through repeated tour performances provides the unique opportunity to build ensemble skills both on and off the stage. The concentration and stamina necessary to perform challenging repertoire at a high level while traveling is a different skill set than one time performances, and is a necessary component for developing professionals. The cumulative benefits of touring for our kids, as well as the high school students we visit, is long-lasting and the impact is undeniable. We are honored to represent Fredonia in this way, presenting outstanding repertoire that will, hopefully, inspire young musicians to pursue a lifelong passion for music."

The wind ensemble has performed at the state, national and international level, including an international tour of Asia and regional tours of the East Coast. It performs repertoire of the highest quality spanning all genres and style periods as well as commissions and emerging wind repertoire. The ensemble has performed at the prestigious College Band Directors National Association Regional Conference, New York State School Music Association and the New York State School Band Directors Association.

Guest artists with the wind ensemble have included such notables as Samuel Adler, Joseph Schwantner, Robert Van Sice, Peter Ettrup Larsen, Dan Perantoni, Larry Combs, Robert Boudreau, Leslie Bassett, Alex Jokipii, Geoff Hardcastle, Randall Hawes, Donald Hunsberger, Timothy Reynish, Donald DeRoche, Paul Dooley, Dana Wilson, Gail Williams, Ray Cramer, Robert Ponto, Julie DeRoche, Timothy Foley, Mark Scatterday, Mallory Thompson, Frank Cipolla, George Foreman, John Lafferty, Vince DiMartino, Cindi Johnston Turner, Chen Qian, and Susan Fanshawe. Commissioning projects include Paul Dooley, Elliott S. Schwartz, Cindy McTee, Walter Hartley, Anthony Plog, Chen Qian, Thomas Duffy, Jim Self, Samuel Adler and Mark Engebretson.

Dr. Holcomb came to Fredonia 1999 after serving as Director of Bands for 20 years at Central College in Pella, Iowa. Under her direction at Central College, the Symphonic Wind Ensemble and the Symphonic Band toured internationally to Canada, Europe, and Mexico and performed at Alice Tully Hall of New York City's Lincoln Center. At Fredonia, Holcomb conducts the wind ensemble and teaches graduate and undergraduate conducting. Additionally, she initiated the conducting program as part of the Master of Music in Performance.

Highly sought after as an adjudicator and guest conductor, Dr. Holcomb has conducted bands and orchestras in 42 states, South America, Australia, China, Hong Kong, Mexico, Europe and Canada. She has presented conducting symposiums in Canada, Europe, South America, Asia, Australia and the United States. Dr. Holcomb is former assistant horn of the Des Moines Symphony and past president of the Iowa Music Educators Association. As a hornist, Holcomb has performed with international artists including Chuck Mangione, Simon Estates, Billy Taylor, Doc Severinson and The Moody Blues. Recently, she was presented with the A. Frank Miller award from Kappa Kappa Psi, elected to the Council and Artistic Planning Conference Committee for the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles, is past Vice President of the Conductors Guild and is Past President of the Northeastern Division of the College Band Directors National Association.

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