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Concert Critique

This concert critique is for the San Marcos High School Concert Band und
er the direction of Matt Armstrong. They were all in uniform dressed in a black
on black attire. Resting positions and the bringing up of instruments was not to
gether in some sections. A few people had bad posture in the front. The appearan
ce of the group did not seem professional from the way they looked and maybe une
nthusiastic. They had a great program. They executed the rhythms of the songs gr
eat. Most of the time the group was in tone but there were some flat and sharp i
nstruments in each of the songs. They had a really good balanced sound, you can
really hear the bass. From the looks of the director it seemed that they stayed
in time. Dynamics , crescendos, and decrescendos were great because you can real
ly hear the contrast in the sound levels. There were a few squeaks and wrong not
es in their program. There were a few solos in each of the pieces and they were
played very well. There three pieces were An Irish Rhapsody by Clare Grundman, A
t Mornings First Light by Davide Gilingham, and Into The Raging River by Steven
Reineke.
On the first piece, initially the song had a very calm, relaxing feeling
. In some of the parts you can imagine Irish step dancers dancing to the tune an
d in a few places where you are just in the green fields. The title of the piece
is called An Irish Rhapsody by Clare Grundman. The piece was written to show Gr
undmanâ s skill in orchestration and transition by putting together some folk melod
ies including The Morren (Minstrel Boy), I Know Where I'm Going, Shepher's Lamb
Reel, Cockles and Mussels, The Rakes of Mallow and Kathleen O'More. This piece
was written in the 20th Century Era in 1971 with a modern folk style while the f
olk songs were written much earlier. I feel the same after learning about this t
une because it was meant to be a nice and fresh tune.
This piece initially gave me a very beautiful, elegant feeling. Very nic
e and soothing but happy feeling. The song reminds me of a new day with adventur
e like the title itself. The title of this piece is At Mornings First Light by D
avide Gilingham. This piece was written to show the rising of the sun and how th
ough it is playful there is great powerful and dramatic moments. The colors of t
he instruments were meant to be shown in this piece. This piece was written in t
he 20th Century Era with a modern style. This kind of changes my feeling of the
piece in that it was more dramatic and powerful than I thought but generally it
stayed the same.
This last piece initially gives a calm feeling in the beginning but then
starts to become a more grand and a fast feeling tune. Then it does have its ca
lm sides in the middle. I actually pictured myself in one of the games I play wh
ich has a grand, adventurous, fantasy setting. At the end it felt and looked lik
e you went to battle and victoriously won. The title of this piece is Into the R
aging River by Steven Reineke. This piece was written in the 20th Century in 199
9 with a modern style. This piece was written to show the adventurous ride in a
white colored river in a rafting trip. I feel that my feelings of the piece has
not changed besides the settings but I did picture it as an adventurous tune. Th
is was a wonderful piece.
The San Marcos High School Concert Band under the direction of Matt Arms
trong performed three tunes: An Irish Rhapsody by Clare Grundman, At Mornings Fi
rst Light by Davide Gilingham, and Into The Raging River by Steven Reineke. Over
they had a wonderful performance. Though they were lacking on their postures an
d how they bring their horns up their musical abilities were great in most parts
of their performance. The pieces were chosen nicely but they could have used a
march. They were in tune through most of the performance and they executed their
rhythms and dynamics very well. I believe this group received a superior rating
.