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— for piccolo trumpet and wind ensemble (piano reduction) by James M. Stephenson
Commissioned by Joshua Ganger – with additional support from the following consortium members:
Michael Arndt – Middle Tennessee State University Rod Chesnutt – Florida Gulf Coast University Vince DiMartino
Louie Eckhardt Mark Flegg Rob Frear Kevin Gebo Craig Hancock
Michigan State University Trumpet Studio Bill Perrine
Richard Rulli – University of Arkansas Mary Thornton – Texas A&M Corpus Christi Joel Treybig – Belmont University
Ginger Turner Christi Wans Chris Wilhjelm
Chris Wilson – Arkansas State University
In early 2015, I was approached by Joshua Ganger – then a doctoral trumpet candidate at Michigan State University – to compose a concerto for piccolo trumpet and wind ensemble. The commission would serve as his dissertation for his doctoral degree.
The commission is unique in several ways: first, that it is the brainchild of a college student; second, that it is a modern concerto for the piccolo trumpet (an instrument most known for its florid use in the Baroque era); and third, that it would be accompanied by a wind ensemble (as opposed to a chamber orchestra, it’s usual setting). Lastly – he specified that the piece be suitable for players like him; in other words, college students (or above).
Therefore, to differentiate this concerto from its Baroque predecessors, I set out to write music that is distinctly American, and current. This can be heard in the use of several bold intervals – 4ths and 5ths – which are common to the bravura of a trumpet, and also with the use of jazz harmonies and sensibilities. My main focus was to write fun music to play, while allowing for beautiful expression in the slow movement. In this way, , the concerto also pays homage to those concertos of centuries ago, many of which I learned myself as a young trumpeter (prior to my switch to full-time composing).
The concerto is in three movements, fast-slow-fast, and is roughly 15 minutes long.
My most sincere thank you to Josh, for hatching this most enjoyable plan, and to those who helped support his vision to have this piece composed.
Jim Stephenson; June, 2016
Printed Score and Parts, PDF Score and Parts, Printed Score, PDF Piano Reduction, Piano Reduction