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Summer at the Conservatory Is Fun and Brasstastic!

We don’t stop just because it’s summer! We’re all a-buzz with activity because the Conservatory Academy’s summer programs provide exciting workshops and in-depth training for middle and high school students, aspiring professionals, and established-career performing artists. Let’s check them out.

In addition to the Conservatory’s traditional summer offerings, this year we offer something new, the UMKC/FredBrass Institute. The Conservatory’s Martin Hackleman, artist in residence and associate teaching professor of horn, talks about the workshop.

Why did you decide to host the FredBrass Institute at the Conservatory?
I had participated in the original FredBrass Institute Virginia last summer and realized that the founding members were on to an interesting and innovative approach to your typical “brass festival.” Importantly, they are all young, vibrant players with a wealth of experiences and a great love of teaching. Since they were not affiliated with any particular institution I thought that they would make a perfect pairing with our wonderful Conservatory and the outreach we are always striving for.

What makes it especially exciting?
The treasure of having SO many people to work with is amazing! We have our tremendous faculty bringing its depth of experience from all corners of the music world, AND the new, contemporary enthusiasm and expertise that the vibrant FredBrass folk bring to the Institute. With such a wealth of knowledge, everyone can take away a huge variety of tools to enjoy and improve their brass playing for virtually the rest of their playing careers.

What will brass performers learn at the weeklong workshop?
Aside from basic techniques, there will be a great deal of emphasis put on chamber playing and the refinement that that can put into each player. There will be individual instrument classes where we will dig into the details of the idea that “when good players play around good players, good things happen!”

What kind of music will participants perform?
Solo playing, brass quintet and brass choir.

If there were one thing that you wanted to let young people know about attending this type of workshop, what would it be?
To have the opportunity to play interesting and challenging music coached by world-class players and teachers is rare to come across. To be able to do it here in the Heartland without having to go to one side of the country or the other is pretty lucky as well! But mostly, to spend a concentrated week with people who value and love brass playing as much as you do, is priceless!

UMKC/FredBrass Institute (June 12–18, 2016) for ages 14–23 is an exciting new summer program that connects students of all skill levels with renowned artists and educators through a combination of accessible instruction and concert experiences.  Jens Lindemann, internationally celebrated trumpet soloist and artistic director of the All Star Brass, is the featured guest. Conservatory faculty include Keith Benjamin, trumpet; Tom Stein, tuba; JoDee Davis, trombone; and Martin Hackleman, horn. FredBrass faculty include Austin Boyer, trumpet; Henry Attaway, euphonium; Will Baker, bass trombone; Dakota Corbliss, horn; Buddy Deshler, trumpet; Derek Ganong, trumpet; Kenneth Johnson, trombone; and Sam Ambrose, tuba.

Participants perform in chamber ensemble rehearsals, a large brass ensemble, elective courses, and will have the option to perform in guest artist performance master classes. The week culminates in a concert featuring participant ensembles.

Composition Workshop (June 19–24, 2016) for ages 14 and up is an intensive weeklong musical experience that helps young composers hone their craft and find their creative voice. Evening concerts featuring innovative programming by guest performers including Michael Hall, Megan Ihnen, and newEar Contemporary Music Ensemble provide enrichment and inspiration. Directed by Mara Gibson.

Kansas City Conducting Symposium at UMKC (June 19–24, 2016) is an intensive professional development workshop with UMKC Conservatory Director of Bands, Steven D. Davis, and distinguished guest clinicians including Joseph Parisi, associate director of bands, UMKC Conservatory, and Jamie L. Nix, Columbus State University, Georgia.

Advanced Choral Conducting Workshop (June 20–22, 2016) focuses on conducting technique for the choral conductor. Directed by Dr. Robert Bode, Conservatory director of choral activities, with special clinicians Pamela Elrod-Huffman, director of choral activities, Southern Methodist University, and Eph Ehly, professor emeritus, UMKC Conservatory.

UMKC Jazz Camp (June 26–30, 2016) is for aspiring jazz instrumentalists ages 12 and up. Participants work with Jazz Camp co-directors Bobby Watson and Dan Thomas, along with UMKC Conservatory’s top-notch jazz faculty.

Kansas City Saxophone Workshop (July 9–13, 2016) gives high school students (grades 9–12) the opportunity to study with renowned saxophone performers and instructors. Directed by Zach Shemon with guest clinician Michael Shults, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

For more information about the UMKC Conservatory, visit conservatory.umkc.edu

Dana Self

Dana Self is an arts writer who was a contemporary art curator for more than 13 years in Kansas, Wisconsin, Missouri, and Tennessee museums, including the Kemper Museum. She has organized about 100 exhibitions of emerging and mid career artists.

She is currently marketing director for UMKC’s Conservatory of Music and Dance.

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