ABQ Celebrates 30th With Premieres

Friday, Oct 20, 2017
Joshua Simka
Juilliard Journal
American Brass Quintet

NOTE: This concert has been postponed; check back for rescheduling information.

In 1987, a subway token cost a buck, Billboard’s top song was “Walk Like an Egyptian,” and five high priests—of brass (as Newsweek would dub the American Brass Quintet)—were settling into their new home at Juilliard, where they’ve been in residence for 30 years since.

The ABQ will celebrate its pearl anniversary with a recital program featuring the world premiere of faculty member Philip Lasser’s (DMA ’94, composition) Common Heroes, Uncommon Land, which Juilliard commissioned for the occasion. The piece “celebrates the human spirit in its daily routine and uncrushable work ethic,” Lasser wrote in a program note. Each of the work’s five movements explores a particular aspect of the American experience and is based on a different short poem. Each member of the quintet will recite one of the texts before they perform that movement. The program also includes the New York premiere of Steven Franklin’s Three Romances and a suite from 19th-century Russia edited by one of the group’s two trumpeters, Kevin Cobb (MM ’95). To close the program, six student instrumentalists will join the quintet for two sacred motets by Giovanni Gabrieli, edited by trumpeter Louis Hanzlik (MM ’00). The quintet’s other members are hornist Eric Reed, tenor trombonist Michael Powell, and John Rojak (BM ’80, bass trombone).

Read the program and get tickets.