Last week the Graduate Trumpet Ensemble took a trip to Chicago. It is good to be back again after a successful trumpet tour. It was great to get out and play for some area high schools and not only to play, but to give master classes as well. It was a fun trip to Chicagoland and I thought I'd blog about that today.
On Monday morning we headed out to Libertyville high school in northern Chicago. The first performances were great. We played Cityscapes by Erik Morales, Fanfare for and Angel by James Stephenson, Fanfare, Suite for five trumpets by Ronald Lo Presti, an excerpt from a Midsummer Nights Dream, by Felix Mendelssohn, and a Bach Chorale. After that gig we took off for Northwestern University to hear a concerto competition (the final round). Northwestern University is right on Lake Michigan and if you ever get a chance to go, do it! The water is beautiful, the campus is great and you can see the Chicago skyline from your practice room! The concerto competition was fantastic. I honestly don't know how they would be able to pick a winner from all the great performers. The level of concentration was extremely high and the musicianship was right up there with it. The next day we headed out to Matea high school and played a couple of concerts for the students. What I really enjoyed about the trip was that it was an educational process. Dr. Schendel talked quite a bit about intonation, matching in a chamber ensemble, and we got to talk a little about ourselves and what our journey has been like. The last day we went to Nequa Valley high school and gave four concerts/presentations. That was a long day, but it was definitely worth it in the end. Giving a master class is a lot of work, but it is definitely rewarding. And the literature we played was fantastic and I enjoyed being a part of such a special group.