What a whirlwind this week has been! It's been tough getting back to business, but I'm confident that this week will be easier.
In my readings this week I focused on the Ewald article. Honestly, I didn't know much about him before I started reading. I played his second quintet with the graduate brass quintet one day, and I brought in his third quintet for my listening presentation. Andre Smith seems like a very patience man. He took such a long time to carefully gather the research he needed to present a true picture of Ewald. I think this teaches us that we must start our research early and be extremely thorough in that quest. A question that this article brought to mind was, why did Mary Rasmussen behave so carelessly with her research of Ewald. In a way, when you come to a dead end with a subject like Rasmussen may have, it is easy to just say, "Forget it!" There are deadlines to make, things like that, but what is more important? Presenting a clear picture of such a influential composer, or giving a vague outline of his works? I think we all know the answer to that one. I have been playing rotary trumpet for a little while. I used it once for an orchestra concert and some on my own. I gathered from the article that they are the norm in Europe. Since I have very little experience with rotary instruments I can't really make up my mind on a rotary vs. piston battle. But I can say that if I ever moved to Germany to play with a brass quintet or a large brass ensemble and everyone was playing on rotary horns, I would get one. From what I know they have a darker sound, I'm not entirely sure this has anything to do with the valves though. But in order to match the other players a rotary would definitely be needed. I disagree with the statement, "there is no true legato on trombone." I think Smith makes a great point when he writes, "trombone players would basically be unemployed if they didn't know how to play legato..." A trombone player must learn to be proficient in the lyrical sense to be able to match the the other players in the brass quintet or large ensemble. Although it took a long time, the ABQ brought the Ewald quintets to Carnegie Hall. As it states in the article, the rediscovery of the Ewald quintets 2-3 are due to the Empire Brass Quintet. The handwritten parts were obtained by Werke. Werke had brought them back from Leningrad and exchanged them for a medley of Gershwin tunes. Amazing....they might have never gotten to America without him!