by Chris M. Bernotas (Grade 2, 2:30)
Circuits is a rhythmically and harmonically engaging piece that will motivate your students and be an excellent vehicle for teaching rhythm and subdivision. The use of driving rhythm, metallic percussion and strong articulations and dynamics your students will be called upon to develop many musical concepts. Precise rhythm is a must when completing the circuit!
DANCES ON THE GOLDEN SHORE
by Patrick J. Burns (Grade 2.5, 4:00)
Dances on the Golden Shore was commissioned by the All-Shore Intermediate Band Directors Association (NJ) to commemorate the organization’s 50th anniversary year. Cast in three contrasting sections, the work is both celebratory and reflective in nature. In the outer sections, the composition relies heavily on strong, syncopated rhythms and colorful orchestration in order to create the impression of a celebratory dance. The lyric middle section is slightly slower and gently flowing, representative of a nostalgic look back on ASIBDA’s half century of providing wonderful opportunities for the music students of Monmouth and Ocean Counties.
DANCING UNDER THE STARS
by Travis J. Weller (Grade 2, 2:27)
Dancing Under the Stars is a piece that reflects the inspired words of Dr. William Purkey, professor emeritus at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. His quote “You’ve gotta’ dance like there’s nobody watching” has been recited countless times imploring others to have courage in following their own path to success. Performing music takes great courage on the part of musicians and conductors alike as they risk being wrong as often as they risk being right. This work honors that act in which young musicians and their teachers endeavor as part of their journey in music education.
ELECTRIC CITY CELEBRATION
by Patrick J. Burns (Grade 2, 3:00)
Electric City Celebration was commissioned by the 2013 Marywood University Junior Honor Band Festival (F. David Romines, Director of Bands and Festival Coordinator), and was premiered on December 7, 2013 with the composer conducting. The piece is a lively and energetic tribute to Scranton – the location of the festival – and refers to that city’s historic nickname, “The Electric City”. The four-note motive heard at the very beginning is presented in various forms throughout the piece and serves as the main structural element for the work.
Of particular note is something interesting that happened during preparation of this piece only a few hours before the premiere. Around lunchtime on the day of the concert, the power went out in parts of Scranton, including several buildings at Marywood University. The music building remained without power for longer than most and after lunch Electric City Celebration was first up for rehearsal. (We were able to continue with our rehearsal as our room had many windows which allowed ample light into the room.) One of the band members asked, “Do you think the power will come back on after we play the piece.” I smiled and said that would be great, so we played the piece straight through. Not ten seconds after we played the last note, all the lights came back on to the great satisfaction and applause of the band members. It was really quite something!
– Patrick J. Burns
IN QUIET HOURS…
by Randall Standridge (Grade 2, 3:55)
In Quiet Hours… is a beautifully crafted lyric piece written with bands of limited instrumentation in mind. There is only one part for each instrument (with one or two divisi in octaves, to provide some range for more advanced ensembles). The title describes the hours in which music educators make the decisions that will bring success, joy, and passion to their students.
LET THEM SOAR!
by Travis J. Weller (Grade 2, 2:30)
Let Them Soar! is a dynamic work for young band that celebrates the amazing performances that young musicians are able to produce. It reminds director, student, and audience alike how important opportunities in the performing arts are for young musicians. Bold and energetic themes are contrasted against subtle textures in this triumphant anthem for young band. Important melodic material is shared by every section of the band, and the percussion keeps the momentum of the work moving towards an uplifting conclusion.
NORTH COUNTRY MARCH
by Patrick J. Burns (Grade 2.5, 3:00)
North Country March was commissioned by two outstanding middle school bands in Bergen County, New Jersey, and was inspired by the beautiful northeastern part of the state where the commissioning schools are located. North Country March combines strong and precise rhythmic writing with a tender and flowing lyricism, evocative of the natural beauty in this part of New Jersey and southeastern New York State.