Montgomery Philharmonic 2017 - 18

Our 12th Season : Old Friends … New Friends

Monday, January 29, 2018 @ Montgomery Village Middle School (7:00 PM)
The Montgomery Philharmonic with the Montgomery Village Middle School Bands & Orchestras

Winter Whispers – Chris M. Bernotas (All Bands)
There is something about a crisp winter morning that makes one feel at home and at peace. This lyrical piece encapsulates that feeling and gives students an opportunity to explore performing with a legato style. Intriguing harmonies, a beautiful melody, and a little bit of winter spirit will help make this a favorite.

About Chris M. Bernotas –
(b. 1969) Composer, conductor, clinician, and educator Chris Bernotas brings an energetic and enthusiastic approach to the world of music education. An active composer and arranger of concert band music, he is published with Alfred Music Publishing, Daehn Publications, Wingert-Jones Publishing, Northeastern Music Publications, Carl Fischer Music, TRN Music Publishing, and Bandworks Publications. His music has been performed at the Midwest Clinic and has appeared on J.W. Pepper’s Editor’s Choice list and numerous state lists. Bernotas is co-author of three books in Alfred’s Sound Innovations series. ​ Bernotas holds a BM from William Paterson University and an MAT from Marygrove College. As an instrumental music teacher for more than 20 years at Mountain Lakes High School (New Jersey), he conducts the wind ensemble, concert band, pep band, jazz band, and pit orchestra. ​  Bernotas has written and arranged music for many drum corps and marching bands throughout the United States, including the University of Maryland’s “Mighty Sound of Maryland” Marching Band. He also adjudicates for marching band competitions and festivals nationwide. In addition to accepting commissions, Bernotas is an active guest conductor and presenter at clinics and conferences throughout the United States.

Instrumentation –
flute, oboe, bassoon, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone, F horn, trumpet, trombone, baritone bass clef, tuba, mark tree, triangle, suspended cymbal, sleigh bells, bells, timpani

Terracotta Warriors – Scott Watson (Advanced Band and MP)
Terracotta Warriors was inspired by the extraordinary “spirit army” of more than 6,000 clay statues created in the third century B.C. for the tomb of Emperor Qin Shi Huang, the first emperor of China. This astounding array of armed sculptures was placed in the emperor’s tomb, along with hundreds of terracotta horses and chariots, to protect the emperor in the afterlife. The music begins with a brief, plaintive folk chant summoning the army from its centuries-old sleep. The faithful warriors respond, coming to life to protect their emperor with musical representations of uniform marching and weapons display. Terracotta Warriors captures the legend and grandeur of the Qin dynasty in this striking and unique piece for band. It was commissioned by the Albemarle County (Virginia) Middle School Honors Band and was premiered at their November 2016 festival. This Alfred Young Symphonic series piece is a 2017 J.W. Pepper Editor’s Choice and was chosen for the 2017 Bandworld Top 100 listing. 

About Scott Watson –
(b. 1962) Scott Watson, was born in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, and has composed for concert, radio, and theater and received recognition for his work from ASCAP, the American Composers Forum, the American Music Center, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and others. 
Watson’s music for band is published primarily by Alfred Publications, for whom he is an exclusive composer. Other music for concert band is published by Wingert-Jones Publications, TRN, C. L. BarnhouseHal Leonard, Concert Works Unlimited (a division of Shawnee Press, now distributed by Hal Leonard), and Jon Ross Music. His string/orchestra music is published by Alfred Publications and Wingert-Jones Publications, and his chamber music is published by Trillenium Music Company. You can hear excerpts of Watson’s compositions by clicking on the music links above.
The Instrumentalist calls Watson’s music “outstanding . . . with beautiful melodies and interesting harmonies” (Mark Hosler, 2004), Percussive Notes says that it was “written with supreme craft” (Cort McClaren, 1993), the Allentown Morning Call says that “Watson exhibited a great deal of skill in managing the resources of the orchestra . . . a very well-crafted piece . . . he will very likely become a force to be reckoned with” (Philip A. Metzger, 2000), and PMEA News says that “Watson skillfully transforms his zest for life into his own brand of unique musical exuberance. His scoring for winds, brass, and percussion is excellent” (Kenneth Laudermilch, 1998). His music for band has been performed at the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic (Chicago) several times and named to several Bandworld Top 100 and Japan Band Clinic Yamaha Recommends 100 Pieces for Band listings. Recent projects include Youth/Student Concert performances of his Aesop's Fables by the Allentown Band, with dance choreographed by Repertory Dance Theater, as well as commissions by the Music Alliance Honor Band Camp (Cleveland, OH, made possible by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts), Lehigh County (Pennsylvania) Bandmasters Association, and Massachusetts Instrumental & Choral Conductors Association (Spring 2007, concert band and chorus). Watson has been pleased and honored to serve as guest conductor or adjudicator at various band festivals.
Watson received his MM and DMA in Composition from Temple University, where his composition teachers included Maurice Wright and Matthew Greenbaum. He teaches instrumental and elective music in the Parkland School District (Allentown, PA), and serves as adjunct professor teaching music education/music technology courses for University of the Arts, Cairn University, and Central Connecticut State University and Applied Composition for University of Valley Forge. During the 2001–2002 academic year, he served as Assistant Professor of Music Theory and Technology at Temple University’s Esther Boyer College of Music (Philadelphia, PA). His book Using Technology to Unlock Musical Creativity, which focuses on project-based, creative music learning facilitated by technology, is published by Oxford University Press.
Instrumentation –
flute, oboe, bassoon, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone, F horn, trumpet, trombone, baritone bass clef, tuba, mark tree, snare drum, vibra slap, bass drum, claves, bongos, floor tom, tam tam, marching machine, crash cymbals, suspended cymbal, brake drum, xylophone, marimba, timpani

Wings of Apollo – Vince Gassi (Advanced Band and MP)
NASA’s Apollo program is known for the first landing of humans on the moon in 1969. In this composition, the dauntless adventure begins with a powerful lift-off. Once achieved, the main theme is presented by flutes, oboe, and then trumpets, with stabilizers provided by baritone, tenor sax, and eventually the remainder of the crew. Stage 1 boosters (a strong, rhythmic accompaniment) provide the propulsion needed to reach a sea of tranquility (lyrical section). From there, we journey to an adventurous transition and a final re-entry of the main theme. 

About Vince Gassi –
An Alfred Publishing author since 2006, Vince Gassi is a much sought-after composer, conductor, and clinician. With over 100 published titles to his credit, his creative and energetic style has made him a favorite with young musicians. His works, both challenging and musically rewarding, appear on many international concert and contest lists.
Gassi received his Bachelor of Music from the University of Western Ontario in London, Canada and later studied composing and arranging at the renowned Dick Grove School of Music in Los Angeles, California. He is currently pursuing a PhD at York University in Toronto, Canada.
For 25 years, Gassi has taught Instrumental Music at the elementary and secondary school levels. He is in frequent demand as a guest conductor, adjudicator, and clinician throughout the United States and Canada. His “Cool Ideas and Arranging Concepts” seminars focus on ways to engage students and teachers in the creative process.
Gassi continues to receive many commissions, and his works have been recorded and performed throughout North America, Europe, and Japan. His pieces are frequently performed at the Midwest Band and Orchestra Conference in Chicago, Illinois.
Instrumentation –
flute, oboe, bassoon, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone, F horn, trumpet, trombone, baritone bass clef, tuba, mark tree, triangle, suspended cymbal, sleigh bells, bells, timpani