Winter concerts hit the right note; improv solos fill the groove

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    Raul Smith plays trombone, Christopher Vaszquez playseuphonium and Justin Scott plays bass (left to right) inthe Lane Community College Symphonic Bands rehearsalin Building 6 on Friday, Feb. 27.
    Photo: Victoria Stephens
    Raul Smith plays trombone, Christopher Vaszquez plays  euphonium and Justin Scott plays bass (left to right) in the Lane Community College Symphonic Bands rehearsal  in Building 6 on Friday, Feb. 27.Photo: Victoria Stephens

    Raul Smith plays trombone, Christopher Vaszquez plays euphonium and Justin Scott plays bass (left to right) in the Lane Community College Symphonic Bands rehearsal in Building 6 on Friday, Feb. 27.
    Photo: Victoria Stephens

    Victoria Stephens
    Reporter


    At the end of each term, Lane Community College’s choirs and bands engage in public performances as the grand finale for their classes. This gives students a way to demonstrate the skills they have developed during the term.

    “I’m excited and a tad nervous at the same time,” Corey Stanger, first year student trumpet player in the Symphonic Band, said. “I’m looking forward to it nonetheless.”

    The March 5 performance was a collection of choirs: the Concert Choir, Chamber Choir directed by Matthew Svoboda and the Gospel Choir directed by Vicki Brabham.

    Apart from the on-campus shows, musicians also perform at area high schools as part of their outreach and recruitment efforts. “It takes a lot of leadership and commitment, but it’s a part of what we do,” Svoboda said. The purpose is to give the high school students a preview of what to expect if they choose to attend Lane.

    Lengthy rehearsals pay off

    Band and choir members devote a great deal of time and effort practicing and rehearsing. Karissa Sinclair, third year student in the Chamber Choir commented that apart from rehearsals three times a week, outside work is expected. “Some of us put in three to five hours a day,” she said.

    “It’s going to be really good. This is the best it’s ever been,” said Steve Jahnke, who has been in the Chamber Choir on and off for several years.

    Upcoming performances

    On Tuesday, March 10, a collection of seven jazz combo groups from the Lane Jazz Studies program will perform in the Blue Door Theater at 7:30 p.m. Combos have five or six members and each combo will play 15-minute sets of both well-known jazz tunes and lesser-known pieces of historical significance.

    The Lane Symphonic Band, comprised of about 40 musicians, is scheduled to perform Thursday, March 12 at 7:30 p.m. and will feature a classical trumpet concerto in the Ragozzino Performance Hall.

    The Winter Term Concert Series concludes Friday, March 13 with the 16 member Lane Jazz Ensemble appearing at the Ragozzino Performance Hall at 7:30 p.m.

    Improv a key ingredient in jazz

    Jazz instructor Paul Krueger directs the Symphonic Band, the Lane Jazz Ensemble and Lane Jazz Studies Combo groups. “In jazz, swing or groove improvisation is a key ingredient. There will be a huge number of solos,” Krueger said, adding that there will be some improvisations with each instrument.

    Improvised solos are made up by the individual musicians and can be practiced or spontaneous. “That’s part of the fun and what makes it hard, too. We are always trying to make great music,” he said.

    “We’ve all been working hard to help others to enjoy this,” Alvaro Sanchez, Symphonic Band trumpet player, said. “It is wonderful what we are doing here. We feel really pumped when people tell us we’re doing a good job.”

    The Winter Term Concert Series began Thursday, March 5 and will continue through Friday, March 13.

    Tickets are $3 for students and seniors 55 and older. Tickets for the general public are $5.

    Order advance tickets at: lanecc.edu\tickets. Or call 541-463-5161 for more information.

     

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