Saturday, April 05, 2008

Michael Sachs at OHIO ITG

Graciously hosted by Charles Pagnard, Principal Trumpet with the Dayton Philharmonic, the Ohio chapter of the ITG today showcased trumpet ensembles from Wright State, Cedarville University, Miami, Capitol, Bowling Green, Ohio State, and the University of Cincinnati's College-Conservatory. With all the music available for just trumpets, Trumpet Ensemble Class could easily stand on its own as a legitimate course in every college music program.

A highlight was a mini concert by the Dayton Philharmonic trumpet section which presented unique arrangements of their season's repertoire. Professor Alan Siebert was secure and musical in his performance of Eastwind Variations from his solo CD. Ashley Hall beautifully played her flugel on a moving sacred medley from her new CD. And the Carillon Brass gave an energetic presentation of selections after lunch that denied naps to anyone present. Cincinnati's Assistant Professor of Jazz Studies (Piano and Trumpet), Kim Pensyl, led a session on improvisation.

Several masterclass sessions were held that featured some of Ohio's brightest young trumpet talents. Their mastery and musicianship was impressive as well as their ability to quickly implement suggestions offered.

The main draw was Mr. Michael Sachs, Principal Trumpet with the Cleveland Orchestra. Condensing two sessions into one, he spoke and demonstrated for almost two hours, answered questions, and without warm up launched into a recital performance of Torelli and Haydn. Mahler 5th, Pictures, Pines, Mahler 3rd on a posthorn, whatever he played, that was how it's supposed to sound. Each piece was brilliantly played with warm, rich tone, and the cool, well-calculated precision of a first-class artist. You gotta love his approach.

Mr. Sachs is as gifted in articulating how to play as he is in just doing it. We were treated to a generous sharing of the vital details of his approach to warm up, practice and playing. It was great to listen and learn. He could have continued all weekend, and if so, fine. That is why we were there, and he didn't disappoint.

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