"Joy with the music that can be produced with brass instruments" — in essence this is our motivation, why we regularly meet for rehearsals and at one occasion or another   in the context of concerts or on special occasions – perform classical and modern brass music. "We", well these are committed brass players from the region around Wetter (Ruhr), Herdecke and Hagen.



Sound of Brass & Friends

Last Friday we welcomed around 200 guests in the Ruhr Valley Cathedral to our first concert Soundcheck (see also concert announcement from 1 August 2018). We were supported by our musical friends Anne Frei (Sorpan) and Benedikt Pernack (organ).

We were particularly pleased about the visit of our mayor Frank Hasenberg and Fritz Jordan (honorary chairman of the trombone choir Wetter and a trumpeter for 70 years), who celebrated his 93rd birthday on this day.

The program at a glance

Rainer Köhler and Torsten Mühlhoff acted as moderators and led through the concert, informing the guests about the pieces, the composers and the musicians. From Renaissance to contemporary composers – musical deviation was guaranteed.

Our first piece Opening was written by Martin Westphal. He was born in 1967 and is a very talented brass trombone choirmaster from Karlsruhe, who has written countless pieces for brass.

This was followed by Alles was ihr tut from Dietrich Buxtehude. The original is a baroque cantata for soprano, bass, 4-part choir, 5 string instruments and basso continuo. We have rewritten a 5-part brass section for our quartet.

At the age of just 18, the French composer Olivier Messiaen wrote the piece Le Banquet cèleste, which was performed by Benedikt Pernack on the organ. The piece is at a very slow tempo and has a very meditative character.

With the piece Canzon à 4 by the Italian composer Giovanni Gabrieli we again got away from this mystical-meditative attitude and turned to the harmonious sounds of the Renaissance. The piece was first published in 1599 and can probably be assigned to the Renaissance.

Orlando di Lasso was one of the most important composers and bandmasters of the Renaissance and the 16th century. The unprecedented versatility of the composer is particularly evident in his comprehensive motet creation: over 500 one-part and multi-part works for 2 to 12 voices. Whether our Motette I was the first motet of Orlando di Lasso in Horst Wetzlar's 4-voice set-up may well be doubted.

In 1785, Tommaso Giordani set the Neapolitan love poem Caro mio ben. The piece is considered a universally popular classic and is often used for festive occasions – so we did in our concert.

The title Vergin, tutto amor comes from the pen of Francesco Durante and should be understood as a musical prayer to the Virgin Mary.

The 4th movement from the cantata of Johann Sebastian Bach Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme was played by Rainer Köhler and Benedikt Pernack in an arrangement by Eberhard Kraus. The cantata is based on a chorale melody by Phillipp Nicolai from 1599. The organ begins with a melodic embossment. The trombone then plays the Cantus firmus from the Nicolai choral line by line.

John Towner Williams has been one of the world's best known, most successful and influential film composers since the 1970s. With the two Star Wars pieces Binary Sunset and Main Title Benedict Pernack took the audience into the science fiction world of George Lucas.

For pieces with echo effects, the term Echo also appears as a movement designation, for example in the last movement of the French Overture in B minor (BWV 831) from the piano practice of Johann Sebastian Bach.

The trumpet virtuoso Johann Gottfried Reiche was a good friend of Johann Sebastian Bach. Rich 24 quatricines for zinc and three trombones are among the best that German city pipe art has to offer. We played the 12th piece from this collection titled Fuga.

Franz Schubert's productivity is impressive. Even while sleeping, he had always worn his glasses to write down ideas immediately. Like Bach and Mozart, he could compose in his head and then only had to write it down. In February 1825, 3 years before his death, he wrote the song Im Abendrot, performed by Anne Frei and Benedikt Pernack on the piano.

I got rhythm by George Gershwin was used with an accelerated rhythm and a text by his brother Ira Gershwin as part of the musical "Girl Crazy", which premiered in 1930. Through many successful cover versions, the title became a jazz standard.

The arrangement of "I got rhythm" also comes from the pen of Jürgen Hahn as the piece Funkability. The jazz trumpeter and composer Jürgen Hahn has his roots in trombone choral work. From the initial hobby, he has found his calling.

The piece Puente Pexoa – the bridge of Pexoa – by Mario del Tránsito Cocomarola is considered one of the most popular folklore songs on the Argentine coast. Cocomarola was an Argentine musician and folklorist and is considered one of the most influential figures of the Chamamé, a genre of folk music from the Argentine northeast and south of Brazil. The underlying text is very romantic and describes a loving encounter at this bridge.

Ansgar Sailer, born in 1969, is a graduated trombonist and conductor of a music school in Baden-Württemberg. The Spiritual in an arrangement for brass quartet by Ansgar Sailer has the title Wade in the water and refers in the text to the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt.

A small compilation

From the organ loft, we recorded our concert in picture and sound. In favor of a still acceptable total length of 29:32 we have shortened the individual pieces in itself. Transitions are easily recognized by wave motion in the picture. Now see and listen to the compilation, which also contains excerpts of the 4 encores.

This text will be replaced
Author: Torsten Mühlhoff
Title: Sound of Brass & Friends - Concert Soundcheck

We would like to thank all concert visitors for their warm and positive feedback as well as the generous tip at the end of the concert. This we will use for expenses incurred and for procuring new sheet music.

We look forward to seeing you soon.


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