Monday, May 21 , 2018, 9:56 pm | Fair 59º


UCSB Wind Ensemble Blows In for Spring Concert

The program includes works by Leroy Anderson, Alfred Reed, Vittorio Giannini and others.

UCSB’s remarkable Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Paul Bambach (and graduate assistant Stephanie Miller) offers its 2008 Spring Concert at 8 p.m. Thursday in the Lotte Lehmann Concert Hall on campus.

On the subject of free concerts, composer Alfred Reed used to tell his students: ‘You can’t give away what you are trying to sell and expect to stay in business.’

The Wind Ensemble’s program includes works by Leroy Anderson (The Irish Suite), Vittorio Giannini (Fantasia for Wind), Ron Nelson (Rocky Point Holiday), Alfred Reed (Ode for Trumpet – featuring graduating senior trumpeter Jessica Harwell), Gustav Holst (Second Suite in F Major) and Frank Ticheli (Sundance).

It is a frustrating but inescapable fact about contemporary music that, in order to avoid offending or boring their audiences, most performers blithely toss out baby and bath indiscriminately. That is to say that, knowing the wariness of modern concert-goers concerning works composed since, say, 1905, they simply don’t play anything written after that date – save for something like the Suite from The Sound of Music, which has the comfort and security of a name brand.

As the present program beautifully demonstrates, Paul Bambach has always been an exception to that rule. To be sure, the name Leroy Anderson still makes regular appearances on the “pops” concert circuit, and thanks to The Planets, the star of Gustav Holst has not completely flickered out of U.S. concert halls. But Nelson? Giannini? Reed? Ticheli? Who are they?

Well, Dr. Ron Nelson was born in Joliet, Ill., in 1929, and was educated at Eastman-Rochester School of Music, where he studied with Howard Hanson and Bernard Rogers. He joined the music faculty of Brown University in 1956, was chairman from 1963-73 and retired in 1993. Although he had written for winds before coming to Eastman, he credits Eastman with changing his style. “I got to Eastman and heard this very tight, sinewy sound in the form for the Eastman Wind Ensemble under Frederick Fennell. This sound was seeping into my musical consciousness, and it was not until I got away from it that I realized how important this experience was.” It was the direct source of Rocky Point Holiday, which established him in the top tier of U.S. wind composers.

Vittorio Giannini devoted his life to carrying on the traditions of European music.

Vittorio Giannini (1903-66) was a neo-romantic U.S. composer of operas, songs, symphonies and band works. He was born in Italy and came to America to study at the Juilliard School. He taught at Juilliard, then the Manhattan School of Music and the Curtis Institute of Music. Among his students were John Corigliano and Alfred Reed. Alfred Reed (1921-2005) used to say, half-facetiously, that “I am the second most published composer next to J.S. Bach.” As a professor, he was an innovator in that he tried to give his student musicians the rudiments of a business sense. “You can’t,” he said, “give away what you are trying to sell and expect to stay in business.” His Ode for Trumpet is best described as exultant lyricism.

Frank Ticheli (born in 1958 in Monroe, La.) is a U.S. composer of orchestral, choral, chamber and concert band works. He lives in Los Angeles, where he is a professor of composition at the USC. Several of his works have become standards in concert band repertoire.

Tickets to Thursday’s concert are $15 for general admission and $7 for students. Tickets will be sold at the door.

For more information about music at UCSB, call 805.893.7001 or visit the Music Department’s Web site at

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Supporter

Enter your email
Select your membership level

Payment Information

You are purchasing:

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >