Join the Cleveland Winds as we celebrate our first live performance with an audience since November of 2019 on Sunday, Nov. 14 @ 3pm in Waetjen Auditorium at Cleveland State University.
We will share this concert with the CSU Symphonic Wind Ensemble, and the performance will be available online at facebook.com/ClevelandStateMusic. The concert is free and open to the public. CSU requires a mask indoors at all times.
The concert will feature Paul Creston's Celebration Overture, Dana Wilson's Piece of Mind, and Sousa's Washington Post March.
Dr. Rodney Dorsey from Indiana University will conduct the Creston.
Celebration Overture was commissioned by Dr. Edwin Franko Goldman and premiered at the ABA conference in February 1955, with Creston conducting. It consists of three sections: fast, slow, and fast -- like the Italian Baroque overture. In style it differs considerably from its ancestor. Regarding Celebration Overture, Creston wrote as follows: “I was preoccupied with matters of melodic design, harmonic coloring, rhythmic pulse, and formal progression, not with limitations of nature or narrations of fairy tales." This bright and festive overture justifies its title with short and rhythmic melodies along with sonorous harmonies.
- Program notes from Band Music Notes, Paul Creston, and Duane J. Mikow
Piece of Mind is a musical pun on an old expression. It is composer Dana Wilson's representation of the workings of the human mind. The first movement, Thinking, begins with a very simple four-note idea that grows seemingly of its own inertia -- as thinking about something often does -- while sometimes being joined or overwhelmed by other, related ideas.
Remembering, the second movement, is structured in a manner similar to the way memory serves most of us -- not as complete, logical thought, but as abrupt flashes of images or dialogue. In this case, the flashes provide a view of the original four-note idea through various musical styles vividly entrenched in the composer's own memory and, hopefully, that of much of the audience.
The third movement, Feeling, explores various states throughout the emotional spectrum, and the final movement, Being, addresses a mental state that is rarely considered in our culture. Non-Western -- particularly East Indian -- musical styles are called upon to shape the four-note idea so as to conjure up and celebrate this marvelous attribute (this piece, this peace...) of mind.
- Program Note from Printed Score
During the 1880s, several Washington, D.C., newspapers competed vigorously for public favor. One of these, the Washington Post, organized what was known as the Washington Post Amateur Authors’ Association and sponsored an essay contest for school children. Frank Hatton and Beriah Wilkins, owners of the newspaper, asked Sousa, then leader of the Marine Band, to compose a march for the award ceremony.
The ceremony was held on the Smithsonian grounds on June 15, 1889. President Harrison and other dignitaries were among the huge crowd. When the new march was played by Sousa and the Marine Band, it was enthusiastically received, and within days it became exceptionally popular in Washington.
The march happened to be admirably suited to the two-step dance, which was just being introduced. A dancemasters’ organization adopted it at their yearly convention, and soon the march was vaulted into international fame. The two-step gradually replaced the waltz as a popular dance, and variations of the basic two-step insured the march’s popularity all through the 1890s and into the twentieth century. Sousa’s march became identified with the two-step, and it was as famous abroad as it was in the United States. In some European countries, all two-steps were called “Washington posts.” Pirated editions of the music appeared in many foreign countries. In Britain, for example, it was known by such names as “No Surrender” and “Washington Greys.”
Next to “The Stars and Stripes Forever,” “The Washington Post” has been Sousa’s most widely known march. He delighted in telling how he had heard it in so many different countries, played in so many ways–and often accredited to native composers. It was a standard at Sousa Band performances and was often openly demanded when not scheduled for a program. It was painful for Sousa to relate that, like “Semper Fidelis” and other marches of that period, he received only $35 for it, while the publisher made a fortune. Of that sum, $25 was for a piano arrangement, $5 for a band arrangement, and $5 for an orchestra arrangement.
According to a letter dated September 28, 1920, from Sousa to Edward B. McLean, editor of the Washington Post, one edition of this music was published in Mexico under the title “Unser Pasa.”
Today, at a community room in Washington, a spotlight illuminates a life-sized color portrait of the black-bearded Sousa, resplendent in his scarlet Marine Band uniform. This is the John Philip Sousa Community Room in the Washington Post Building. It is the newspapers’ tribute to the man who first gave it worldwide fame.
- Program note from printed score