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ITG Day 2

June 21, 2011

Day 2 of ITG was very enjoyable. It started at 8:30 a.m. with the Solo Competition Finals. In the very small world of Trumpet, one of my former students, Tony Sadlon, is now a Graduate Assistant at the University of New Mexico working with my good friend John Marchiando. Tony was one of the 3 finalists in the competition. I haven’t heard Tony play since he was an undergrad. It was such a pleasure to hear how much he’s grown, as he sounded terrific.

The next performance of the day was Ronald and Avis Romm’s recital. It was a lovely performance. I can’t adequately express how well they play together. With no head bobbing, eye contact, or conducting with the horn, every downbeat, ritard, accelerando, and release was exactly together. They are in the same musical space, and it was a pleasure to share it with them this afternoon.

Today is the day the exhibits open. I’ll cover them more in depth later, but here are a couple of things to look forward to:

1) You should know right now that I’m not a gadget guy. I find them, as a rule, to be a waste of time and money. I may have found my favorite one yet.

2) I will try anything. This may seem at odds with #1, but as a teacher I need to know what is “out there” that my students may be considering. I played a couple of horns today that you need to see.

If you’re looking for a reason to come to a conference like this one, the clinic my friend J.C. Dobrzelewski gave today can serve as motivation. J.C. gave a lecture recital on the keyed trumpet and its relationship to the Haydn and Hummel trumpet concertos. There is no other place where an opportunity exists to hear someone play the Haydn, or Hummel, on the instrument for which it was written. I have a little experience messing around with the keyed trumpet, as my colleague Rick Seraphinoff makes a lot of early instruments and left a keyed trumpet with me for a while last year to see how it would play. They are ridiculously difficult instruments, as the scale is uneven, and the sound changes every time a key is pressed. J.C. did a marvelous job at keeping as even a sound as is possible, and gave valuable insight into how this piece was probably played originally, which helps in how to approach it with modern instruments.

The evening concert was an absolute treat. The first time I saw Allen Vizzutti play I was 16 years old. After watching him, I had the thought that although I knew what he was doing was hard, he seemed to know it was easy. I made the decision then that I wanted to know what he knows. Well, it’s 28 years later; I’m watching him play beautifully and effortlessly and thinking, I know it’s harder than that, but he seems to know better. Allen split the recital with Tony DiLorenzo who played his own composition with piano and taped percussion. The piece was thoroughly entertaining and wonderfully played. Allen joined Tony for the Del Staigers “Carnival of Venice” for the closer which, of course, brought the house down.

These are the kind of performances that make me glad to be here. Where else could I see the progress of a former student, one of the founding members of Canadian Brass, a good friend on keyed trumpet, and world-renowned soloist Allen Vizzutti in one day? Only at ITG.

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