Roger Verdi - Trombone Roger Verdi holds a BA from Drew University and MMA from the Manhattan School of Music. His teachers included Edward Erwin, Hal Janks and Albert Lube. He is an active free-lance musician in the New York /New Jersey area. Ensembles he has performed with include: the New Jersey Symphony, the New Philharmonic of New Jersey, the Riverside Symphony, the New Jersey State Opera, the Hawthorne Symphony, the Bridgeport Symphony, the Garden State Philharmonic, the Princeton Symphony, the Princeton Pro Musica, the New Jersey Pops, the Newark Cathedral Orchestra, the Delaware Symphony, North South Consonance, the New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players, the Village Light Opera Group, Ars Nova Singers, the Westfield Oratorio Society, the Greenwich Symphony, the Greenwich Choral Arts Society, the Manhattan Chamber Orchestra, the Garden State Band, and many others. In November of 2006, he performed Ferdinand David's Concertino for Trombone and Orchestra with the New Sussex Symphony in Newton New Jersey. He is a founding member of the Modern Brass Quintet, and has performed with that ensemble at the 92nd Street Y, Greenwich House, Merkin Hall, the Kosciuszko Foundation, the Storm King Arts Center, the Lincoln Center Library, as well as many other venues. He has recorded widely for the Newport Classics and Koch International labels. A veteran touring musician, he has traveled the United States many times performing opera and musical theater. His activities include many different styles of music; he has toured the world with the Glenn Miller Orchestra, performed in the orchestra for Ringling Bros. Circus, and recorded CDs for the Chico Mendoza and David Cedeno Orchestras. His CDs, Looking Ahead: Works for Trombone, released in 2007, and Taking Steps: Works for Trombone, released in 2009, have won critical acclaim and sold internationally. Roger performs on a Selmer-Bach model 42B trombone, with a Dennis Wick model 5AL mouthpiece. He lives in Belleville New Jersey. Martha Locker-Piano Martha Locker leads a busy and diverse musical life, performing as a soloist and chamber musician in both the United States and abroad. As a soloist, Ms. Locker has performed with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra, the Westmoreland Symphony and the New York University Symphony Orchestra. She has performed in recital in the Helen Clay Frick Recital Series, the Steinway Society Recital Series and Bermuda's St. John concerts. Her most recent engagements include performances at the National Gallery of Art and on Brooklyn's Bargemusic series. Ms. Locker holds Bachelor and Master's degrees from the Juilliard School, where she studied with Jerome Lowenthal, Jacob Lateiner and Peter Serkin, and is currently a candidate in the Ph.D. program at New York University, where she studies with Miyoko Lotto. Félix-Alexandre Guilmant 1837-1911. Alex Guilmant was a French organist and composer. He was a student of his father, then of Jacques-Nicolas Lemmens. In 1871 he was appointed organist of la Trinité church in Paris, a position he held for 25 years. Guilmant created the Schola Cantorum in 1894 with Charles Bordes and Vincent d'Indy. In 1896 he succeeded Charles-Marie Widor as organ teacher of the Conservatoire de Paris. Throughout he pursued a virtuoso career in Europe and the USA. In 1904 he gave a celebrated series of 40 recitals on the largest organ in the world, the St. Louis Exposition organ. Guilmant was an accomplished composer, particularly for his own instrument, the organ. His organ repertoire includes his 18 collections of Pieces in Differing Styles, the more liturgical Sixty Pieces in Gregorian Tonality and his 12 books of the Liturgical Organist. He also wrote chamber music, vocal music, a sinfonia cantata Ariane and a lyric scene Bathsheba. His Morceau Symphonique was completed in 1902 as an examination piece for the trombone students at the Paris Conservatory. The lyric opening in e flat minor gives way to an allegro in the parallel major key. The contrasting slow and fast sections display different aspects of the musician's ability, typical of a contest piece. Morceau Symphonique is among the best loved and most often performed pieces in the trombonist's repertoire. Joseph Edouard Barat 1882-1963. Joseph Edouard Barat was born in Paris, France on September 22, 1882, the son of a soloist with the Garde Republicaine Band. He studied at the Paris Conservatory with Paul Vidal and Georges Caussade. He became a military bandmaster in Lyon and later in Paris. He twice failed the exam for Director of Music of the Garde Republicaine but made his mark by creating a school for assistant bandmasters. Barat retired in 1933 and became conductor of the renowned Sirene fanfare band in Paris, which he led until 1944. He died at Chelles on September 10, 1963. His Andante and Allegro was composed for the 1935 trombone examinations at the Paris Conservatory. The two contrasting sections alternate lyricism with fast passage work, typical of a contest piece. Vagn Holmboe 1909- 1996. The Danish composer Vagn Holmboe was born at Horsens in East Jutland on 20 December 1909. He showed musical talent from an early age, and under the recommendation of Carl Nielsen, studied at the Royal Danish Conservatory of Music. There his teachers included Knud Jeppesen and Finn Høffding. After finishing his studies in 1929 he moved to Berlin where he studied with Ernst Toch. While in Germany he met and married the Romanian pianist Meta May Graf. Together they visited her homeland where they studied Transylvanian folk song. A sense of folk song pervades his later work. He later moved back to Denmark where he taught at the Conservatoire in Copenhagen and at the Danish Institute for the Blind. The Danish government extended him a lifetime grant. Holmboe composed about two hundred works, including thirteen symphonies, three chamber symphonies, four symphonies for strings, twenty string quartets, numerous concertos, one opera, and the late series of preludes for chamber orchestra, as well as much choral and other music. His Sonata for Trombone and Piano was dedicated to the Danish trombonist Carsten Svanberg and completed in 1987. Movement one, Allegro decido begins with an expressive trombone melody, later joined by a fragmented piano part. The contrasting voices interweave and lead to a soft conclusion. The second movement, Andante, has the trombone extending a song like melody over a sometimes agitated piano accompaniment. The last, Allegro con Brio, echoes fragments of melody from the first movement and leads to a triumphal conclusion for the trombone that gives way to final soft piano chords. Leslie Bassett 1923-- Leslie Bassett was born in Hanford, CA and grew up on ranches in the San Joaquin Valley. His early music training was on piano, trombone, cello and other instruments. He served during World War II in army bands as trombonist, arranger and composer. After the war, he enrolled at California State University, Fresno and was principal trombonist with the Fresno Symphony Orchestra. Graduate study at the University of Michigan under Ross Lee Finney was interrupted by a Fulbright Fellowship to Paris and work with Arthur Honegger and Nadia Boulanger. He joined the University of Michigan faculty in 1952, then held the Prix de Rome at the American Academy in Rome from 1961 to 1963. He has also worked with the Spanish-British composer Roberto Gerhard and with Mario Davidovsky in electronic music. At Michigan he became chairman of composition, the Albert A. Stanley Distinguished University Professor of Music, and the 1984 Henry Russel Lecturer, the university's highest faculty honor. His Suite for Unaccompanied Trombone was completed in 1957 for the American trombonist Roger Davenport. Movement One, Slow, free and Expressive, is an aria taking the performer through the extremes of register and dynamics. Movement two, March, quite fast, alternates a distinctive march tune with material varied from the expressive to the explosive. The third movement, Slow and Lyrical, weaves a simple upward moving motive through a series of dramatic episodes leading to grand climax though ending on a soft extended note. The fourth movement, Fast and with energy, begins with a burst of fast notes, and leads to a fortissimo climax. The work ends with a haunting melody interspersed with pianissimo low register notes leading to a reflective and ambiguous conclusion. Gunnar de Frumerie 1908-1987. Gunnar de Frumerie was born in Stockholm, the son of an architect. He showed an early aptitude for the piano, studied in Stockholm and Vienna then later in Paris under Alfred Cortot. He led a career as pianist and teacher, but also as a composer. He composed in a wide range of styles though is remembered now mainly for his piano music. Comparisons of his style to other Scandinavian composers such as Lars-Erik Larsson are often made. His musical language is rooted in the romantic, possessing a Brhamsian complexity, though lacking influence of any of the Twentieth Century 'isims.' The Trombone Concerto was originally conceived as a cello concerto, which in turn grew from de Frumerie's Cello Sonata no. 2. The Trombone Concerto was dedicated it to the Swedish trombonist, Christian Lindberg. It was to be the composer's last published work. It is heard here with a piano accompaniment and renamed Sonata. The first movement, Con Moto Moderato spins a long romantic melody through a propulsive accompaniment. The second movement, Andante, is a set of variations on a rather dark theme, taking the trombonist to the limits of both high and low registers. The third movement, Allegro, features another romantic melody over a florid accompaniment. Stjepan Sulek 1914-1986 Stjepan Sulek was born in Yugoslavia in 1914, and is well known as the conductor who, in a busy career, created the present Zagreb Radio Chamber Orchestra. As a composer he worked in most genres, but was particularly prolific in the field of orchestral composition. He composed eight symphonies, concertos for piano, cello, bassoon, violin, viola and horn, two operas, one ballet and one cantata. He emphasized melody, often seeking inspiration from earlier periods. Sulek became a corresponding member of the Croatian Academy of the Arts and Sciences in 1948 and an official member and secretary of the Department of Music for the academy in 1954. From 1958-64 he was the principal conductor of both the chamber and symphony orchestras of Zagreb and undertook numerous European tours with these ensembles. His Sonata Vox Gabrieli was commissioned by the International Trombone Association and completed in 1973. It is a dramatic work. The trombone issues plaintive themes alternating with bold declamations leading to a grand conclusion supported by a virtuosic piano accompaniment.