“Haunted All Hallows Eve” is the shivery theme for the fall Eastern Shore Wind Ensemble concert of the 2016-2017 season. Dr. Keith Wharton will conduct the community concert band in performing works by contemporary, classical and Broadway composers. The free concert will begin at 4 p.m., Sunday, October 30, at Emmanuel Episcopal Church at Cross and High streets, Chestertown.
The first piece will be “Of Heroes and Demons,” a new work by Rob Romeyn that captures the fight between good and evil. Musical themes for both are introduced, developed and expanded to create a feeling of unresolved conflict, ultimately leading to a thunderous conclusion. Will the hero win?
“Creepy Classics for Band” is an arrangement by Robert E. Foster of some of the best-known and -loved ghost, witch, sorcerer and spooky-creature themes from classical literature: “In the Hall of the Mountain King,” “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice,” “Danse Macabre” and “A Night on Bald Mountain.”
“Dance of the Spirits” by ASCAP award-winning Wisconsin composer Michael Sweeney uses a variety of unusual sounds, effects and quickly changing textures to convey the mystery and beauty of the northern lights. Native Americans call these multicolored lights in the sky the “dance of the spirits.”
“Sextet from Lucia” is an arrangement by Andrew Glover of a melody composed by Gaetano Donizetti for his opera “Lucia di Lammermoor.” Six brass instruments with band accompaniment mirror the point in the opera when six main characters each express their emotional reaction to a forced marriage and a jilted lover. It presages the famous mad scene later in the opera in which a blood-soaked bride gone mad exults after murdering her new husband.
“Chillers and Thrillers (Themes of Suspense)” by John Williams presents some of his most compelling themes that conjure up the likes of Darth Vader, Dracula, Voldemort, certain New England witches and a fish with really big teeth.
As a respite from the tension of all the scary music, the ensemble will next perform the Finale from Antonin Dvorak’s “Symphony No. 9: From the New World.” L. C. Harnsberger’s arrangement for concert band preserves the lovely and sonorous melodies of the final movement of his most popular symphony.
The final work on the program will be “Highlights from Wicked.” Arranger Michael Brown presents memorable show tunes by Broadway composer Stephen Schwartz for the blockbuster Broadway hit “Wicked: The Untold Story of the Witches of Oz.” The work features “No One Mourns the Wicked,” “I’m Not That Girl,” “Defying Gravity,” “No Good Deed” and “For Good.”
Directed by Dr. Keith Wharton, the Eastern Shore Wind Ensemble is an all-ages community concert band. It was formed in 2001 to offer area wind and percussion musicians the opportunity to continue or return to the pleasures of playing quality music in a large ensemble. New members are always welcome, without audition or fee.
Rehearsals for the next concert, on December 4, will begin October 31. They start promptly at 7:00 p.m. and run until 8:30 p.m. in the Washington College band room in Gibson Center for the Arts. For further information, call 410-778-2829. The ensemble is supported by a grant from the Kent County Arts Council and community donations.