Bands and Orchestra Concert Opens Family Weekend

With steady taps of a snare drum, L’Insieme Di Martedi Sera, the Academy Concert Band, began its rendition of “Burma Patrol March.” Composed by Karl K. King in 1942, the lively tune starts with a rapid and upbeat section before transitioning into a quieter melody. The snare drum continued to keep pace throughout the piece, while the high notes of flutes rang out above other instruments.

L’Insieme Di Martedi Sera is a small ensemble of brass, woodwind and percussion players directed by Derek Jacoby, Instructor in Music. Its performance was one of several at Friday night’s Academy Bands and Orchestras Concert. As part of Family Weekend, the concert attracted a large audience with its program of marches, symphonies, lullabies, suites and fantasies rooted in improvisation.

The Academy Symphony Orchestra performed the first movement of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3 in E-Flat Major, Op. 55, better known as “Eroica.” The piece begins with two short and forceful notes and features several motifs, including a call-and-response section between flutes and trumpets, a succession of deep and dramatic notes on the timpani and slow, gentle plucking of violin strings.

“‘Eroica’ was my favorite pieces. Though it was a long and difficult composition, it was fun to play because of its contrast in different parts. It was challenging to learn, but the final product made the time spent practicing worth it,” said Anushree Gupta ’18, a member of the Academy Symphony Orchestra.

Later, the Academy String Orchestra and Academy String Ensemble performed “Slumber, My Darling,” a lullaby composed by Stephen Foster in 1862. The piece started slowly and softly with only a few strings playing before taking a short pause. All instruments then joined in, abruptly breaking the silence and creating a rich and layered tone for rest of the song.

“I thought that we performed our best during the concert, as we nailed the overall tone of the piece and allowed the soloist, [Jonathan Jow ’16], to really stand out from the other players. My favorite part about ‘Slumber, My Darling’ was the ending where the song faded out beautifully, providing closure for the piece,” said Connor Devlin ’18, a bass player in the Academy String Ensemble.

The last piece in the show was Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s 1880 “Capriccio Italien,” played by the Academy Concert Band. The bouncing piece utilized percussion, such as bells and drums to add accents to the many repeating melodies.

“[‘Capriccio Italien’] went really well. The bassoons and saxes were consistently messing up in the midsection during rehearsal. Somehow, we all decided to play everything right for our concert… I’d have to say the best part of the piece is the upbeat rhythm and the energy in the piece, which I really think we captured last Friday,” said William Hartemink ’17, a bassoon player in the Academy Concert Band.