Rhythm & Brass is being brought to campus by a grant from the Robert G. Boehmler Community Foundation. Boehmler, who received a bachelor's degree from the School of Music in 1938 and a master's degree in 1961, was a musician and educator who established this foundation to support education in the communities in which he lived. A music teacher in the Palmyra-Macedon (New York) School District for many years, Boehlmer died in 1998.
Rhythm & Brass's October 26 performance will be a home-turf concert for the group's French horn and piano player Alex Shuhan, an assistant professor of music performance in the Ithaca College School of Music. The ensemble is a brass quintet augmented by a percussionist. The other members of the ensemble are trumpeters Wiff Rudd and Rex Richardson, trombonist Tom Brantley, tuba player Matthew Gaunt, and drummer and percussionist David Gluck.
"On Your Radio Dial" is so named because the program offers music that defines the American radio landscape. Rhythm & Brass's performance will include music by Bach, the Beatles, Vaughan Williams, Shostakovich, Hank Williams, Led Zeppelin, Duke Ellington, Pink Floyd, Louis Armstrong, and Stevie Wonder. Rhythm & Brass searches for the commonality in these influences and fearlessly weaves them all into a single concert experience.
While maintaining a full touring schedule, Rhythm & Brass has also performed at numerous special events including a 1994 New York concert debut at Carnegie Recital Hall with celebrated jazz trumpeter Randy Brecker. Internationally, Rhythm & Brass has appeared in Canada, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Japan, and the Virgin Islands.
Song & Dance (1994), the group's first CD on d'Note Records, is an immensely versatile program of works, from the 17th-century composer Samuel Scheidt to the world premiere recording of the Dance Suite by Leonard Bernstein, his last composition. Its second album, Time in September (1995), includes original jazz compositions by group members and features award-winning guitarist Gene Bertoncini as well as a commissioned work by the Grammy-nominated composer Maria Schneider. Rhythm & Brass's latest release, Sitting in an English Garden Waiting for the Sun, is an outrageous salute to the British invasion of the 1960s.
Contributed by Erik Kibelsbeck
Photo by Dean Jones