The Gustavian Weekly

Music ensembles in concert after spring break

By Beth Schmidt A & E Editor | March 22, 2013 | variety

The Gustavus Jazz Lab Band practices for their upcoming concert. <em>Vinny Bartella</em>

The Gustavus Jazz Lab Band practices for their upcoming concert. Vinny Bartella

The sounds of spring and music are in the air on the Gustavus campus. Musicians at Gustavus have been rehearsing and practicing for concerts throughout the year and three of the groups will be performing after Spring Break. Students that participate in music ensembles earn academic credit while they put in at least three to six hours of practice, on their own, with their section, and with the group.

“Having these musical ensembles is a great representation of our liberal arts college. We have students who are biology majors, play on a sports team, and perform in music concerts. I think it is a good change of pace to be involved in something and using other parts of your brain than you do while focusing on your major,” Professor in Music and Gustavus Symphony Orchestra conductor Ruth Lin said.

Lin began conducting the Symphony Orchestra at Gustavus since 2010 and is a pianist herself.

The Gustavus Symphony Orchestra rehearses for their midwestern tour. Nicole Ektnitphong

The Gustavus Symphony Orchestra rehearses for their midwestern tour. Nicole Ektnitphong

The Gustavus Symphony Orchestra will go on tour over Spring Break around the Midwest. On their 2012 Spring Break last year the Symphony Orchestra went to South Africa where they played Star Wars music, their next international trip will be Spring Break of 2016.

“It is great to be able to bond with orchestra people and get to spend time with them away from campus,” Senior Cassandra Quam, violinist in Symphony Orchestra, said.

Director of the jazz ensembles and professor in music, Dr. Steve Wright, has been fostering a love for music in Gusties for 23 years and has played the trumpet for 58 years.

“When the audience is listening to the ensembles perform I hope that they can hear and see the quality of the performance and the enthusiasm that the musicians are giving them. The jazz ensembles have developed into top rate jazz bands and you can see that they are enjoying what they’re doing, not to mention that they are playing extremely well,” Wright said.

“Every person has their own style of feeling the music, so when someone gets to do a solo during the concert it is always personal and very cool to watch,” Junior Tristan Fernstrom, tenor saxophone in Gustavus Jazz Lab Band, said.

The Adolphus Jazz Ensemble and Gustavus Jazz Lab Band will perform at 7:30 p.m. on April 13, 2013, in Bjorling Recital Hall and the Gustavus Symphony Orchestra Home Concert will be at 1:30 p.m. April 14, 2013, in Bjorling Recital Hall. Concerts are open to the public at no charge.