The American Brass Quintet is internationally recognized as one of the premier chamber music ensembles of our time, celebrated for peerless leadership in the brass world. As 2013 recipient of Chamber Music America’s highest honor, the Richard J. Bogomolny National Service Award for significant and lasting contributions to the field, ABQ’s rich history includes performances in Asia, Australia, Central and South America, Europe, the Middle East and all fifty of the United States; a discography of nearly sixty recordings; and the premieres of over one hundred fifty contemporary brass works.
ABQ commissions by Robert Beaser, William Bolcom, Elliott Carter, Eric Ewazen, Anthony Plog, Huang Ruo, David Sampson, Gunther Schuller, William Schuman, Joan Tower, and Charles Whittenberg, among many others, are considered significant contributions to contemporary chamber music and the foundation of the modern brass quintet repertoire. The ABQ’s Emerging Composer Commissioning program has brought forth brass quintets by Gordon Beeferman, Jay Greenberg, Trevor Gureckis, and Shafer Mahoney. Among the quintet’s recordings are eleven CDs for Summit Records since 1992 including the ABQ’s 50th release State of the Art—The ABQ at 50 featuring recent works written for them.
Committed to the promotion of brass chamber music through education, the American Brass Quintet has been in residence at The Juilliard School since 1987 and the Aspen Music Festival since 1970. Since 2000 the ABQ has offered its expertise in chamber music performance and training with a program of mini-residencies as part of its regular touring. Designed to offer young groups and individuals an intense chamber music experience over several days, ABQ mini-residencies have been embraced by schools and communities throughout the United States and a dozen foreign countries.
The New York Times recently wrote that “among North American brass ensembles none is more venerable than the American Brass Quintet,” while Newsweek has hailed the ensemble as “the high priests of brass” and American Record Guide has called the ABQ “of all the brass quintets, the most distinguished.” Through its acclaimed performances, diverse programming, commissioning, extensive discography and educational mission, the American Brass Quintet has created a legacy unparalleled in the brass field.
To commemorate SA300 – the San Antonio Tricentennial, the San Antonio Chamber Music Society, as a SA300 Community Partner, has commissioned beloved San Antonio composer James Balentine to write a special work for the American Brass Quintet. Mr. Balentine puts it this way: ‘I was inspired by a poem by San Antonio’s first Poet Laureate, Carmen Tafolla – the poem is “This River Here“, and the title of the piece is “the river remembers“, a partial quote from the introduction to the poem, which Carmen graciously allowed me to use as the title for this piece. The poem is a wonderful reflection on the history and flavor of San Antonio.’ This special commission is a gift from the San Antonio Chamber Music Society to our city on its 300th birthday, and will be given it’s world premiere in San Antonio by the American Brass Quintet. We will also be honored by the presence of Ms. Tafolla, who will be reading her poem at this concert.
“The quintet’s clear sound and precise articulation let the music speak with big-time personality.”
“The high priests of brass.”
Kevin Cobb (trumpet)
Louis Hanzlik (trumpet)
Eric Reed (horn)
Michael Powell (trombone)
John D. Rojak (bass trombone)
Consort Music of Elizabethan and Jacobean England
(edited by Louis Hanzlik)
Suite from 19th Century Russia
(ed. Kevin Cobb)
Common Heroes, Uncommon Land
the river remembers
Special Commission for the San Antonio Tricentennial
Canons of the 16th Century
(ed. Ray Mase)
Address: 211 Belknap Place
Time: 3:15 PM