HSU Symphonic Band’s Promise of Star Wars

If the blockbuster movie “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” got you nostalgic (or curious) about the Star Wars that started it all, you’re in luck. The HSU Symphonic Band performs the original Star Wars Suite, plus a world premiere by HSU composer Brian Post, Copland’s “Promise of Living” and a trombone piece featuring student Craig Hull, on Friday April 29 in Fulkerson Recital Hall.

Symphonic Band played two movements from John Williams’ Star Wars Suite in December, before “The Force Awakens” was released. Now old and new fans can enjoy the entire suite, based on music from the first trilogy.

“This is not your average high school band Star Wars arrangement,” said Symphonic Band director Paul Cummings. “This suite is at least 20 minutes of substantial music, and the hardest by far for band. It calls for a number of unusual instruments. But when you hear music from the suite, you appreciate the genius of composer John Williams in a way that the movie soundtracks don’t quite deliver.”

The concert also includes the world premiere of “Textures,” a two-movement work by HSU composition professor Brian Post, and the first movement of the Trombone Concerto by Danish composer Launy Grondahl that features HSU student trombonist Craig Hull as soloist. “This is an excellent piece,” said Cummings, “and one of the best in the repertoire for trombone.”


On the program is “The Promise of Living” by Aaron Copland, taken from his only full-length opera, “The Tender Land.” “It’s beautiful music that’s not known very well because Copland is just not known for opera. Though this is tuneful, it’s not typical Copland—it’s a slow, reflective piece, beautifully scored for band, including some very nice passages for the English horn.”

The Symphonic Band also performs several movements from the Suite Francais by Darius Milhaud and “Lincolnshire Posey” by Percy Grainger.

The HSU Symphonic Band performs on Friday April 29 at 8 p.m. in Fulkerson Recital Hall on the HSU campus. Tickets are $8, $5 seniors and children, free to HSU students with ID, from HSU Box Office (826-3928) or at the door. More information: http://HSUMusic.blogspot.com. Directed by Paul Cummings, produced by HSU Music department.