Friday, May 01, 2009

Ride the Ghost Train with the HSU Symphonic Band

The sounds of trains passing in the night aren’t heard anymore in Arcata, but they will be again in Fulkerson Recital Hall on May 1.

The HSU Symphonic Band spring concert features the popular new band composition, “Ghost Train,” by contemporary Los Angeles composer David Whitaker. Recorded more than forty times by bands and orchestras, this piece “depicts the legend of the Ghost Train that comes slowly out of the mist, building speed and careening down the tracks,” according to Kenneth P. Ayoob, conducting the Symphonic Band. “It features percussion, asymmetric meters and the hypnotic sound of the train.”

The program of wind music from English and American composers also includes a march by the “March King,” John Philip Sousa (“The Fairest of the Fair”) and a setting of three “Old American Songs” by Aaron Copland, which features baritone Christopher Hatcher.

The orchestra plays two classics of the British Band style: “Original Suite” by Gordon Jacob, and “Mannin Veen” by Haydn Wood, a tone poem that evokes the music and dance of the Isle of Man. “Be Thou My Vision” by noted composer and percussionist David Gillingham “is a beautiful setting of the hymn coupled with a counter melody of two Irish songs,” Ayoob said.

The Symphonic Band spring concert is Friday May 1 at 8 p.m. in the Fulkerson Recital Hall on the HSU campus in Arcata. Tickets are $7 general, $3 students/seniors, from the HSU Ticket Office (826-3928) or at the door. Free to HSU students with ID.

Media: Arcata Eye, Humboldt State Now.

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