Wind Ensemble

Williams Symphonic Winds

The Williams College Department of Music presents a concert with the Williams Symphonic Winds in Chapin Hall on Friday, May 11 at 8:30 p.m. This free event is open to the public.

Conductor Heidi Johanna Miller leads the Williams Symphonic Winds in a program that spans the centuries, taking advantage of the ensemble’s instrumentation and depth of musicianship. One featured composer is Giovanni Gabrieli, who made full use of the architecture in which his music was played. By placing choirs or groups in different parts of San Marco in his native Venice, he created fascinating spatial effects with his music. The Symphonic Winds perform the Cazon noni toni a 12 using the ample space and acoustics of Chapin Hall to recreate this effect. Three choirs, one of woodwinds, one of brass, and one of mallet percussion call and respond across the space, transforming the hall itself into an instrument.

The ensemble has never shied from presenting contemporary music, and the 20th century is well represented in this concert. Works of Hovhaness, Maslanka, and Shelly Hanson, as well as Igor Stravinsky grace the program. Williams music student Sato Matsui ’14 presents a world premiere titled Talkalone.

An advocate for new music, Ms. Miller has guided world premiere performances of works by Stephen Hartke, Keir Neuringer, Carl Schroeder, James Patrick Miller, and Dawn Lenore Sonntag; in addition, her ensembles’ performances have been noted by composers Karel Husa, Steven Stucky, and Dana Wilson. In 2008, her dissertation research on the music of Steven Stucky was awarded a Graduate Research Fellowship from the University of Minnesota where she also served as conductor of the North Star Band during the 2008-2009 season and a graduate teaching assistant in the wind band program from 2006 to 2009.