Greetings to all horn players around the globe, and welcome to the July issue of Horn and More!
IHS 54 is only one month away! Pack your bags and head to South Texas for the first in-person symposium since 2019! The horn community has a lot of catching up to do. I recently published the symposium schedule on IHS54.com and on social media pages. Thank you for all your fabulous feedback! If you haven’t seen the schedule, check it out below. There is something for everyone in the 120+ presentations and performances.
To say I am thrilled to be your host for IHS 54 is an understatement. Words cannot express the joy (and a few tears) I have had planning and preparing for your arrival. My goal is that the symposium reflects the values and vision of the International Horn Society and its members. Each day of the symposium holds special events sure to please all in attendance. I would be remiss to think I could outline symposium highlights in the space available…there are too many to name! You must come to experience it all!
Looking for a horn? music? other special equipment? IHS 54 exhibitors will be in the same venue as all the symposium events. No need to trek across campus! Exhibits are open daily from 9 AM to 6 PM, with a lunch break from 1-2 PM. Exceptions apply for Monday, August 1, and Saturday, August 6.
Can’t make it to Kingsville but still want to enjoy a portion of the symposium? Purchase of LIVESTREAM concert tickets for the featured artists' concerts are available on the IHS 54 Marketplace Store.
Kingsville is cowboy country and quite proud of its ranching heritage. The area is also known as the Wild Horse Desert with a unique mix of sub-tropical and desert-like flora and fauna. (Yes, it will be hot in August, but we have air conditioning!) The city would not exist without the world-famous King Ranch from whose land Kingsville was established. You will have an opportunity to visit the King Ranch and museum on the Saturday ranch tours. Sign up at the IHS 54 Marketplace store today.
As our lives are returning to pre-pandemic ways, COVID-19 has not left us completely. Please review the IHS 54 COVID policy on the website. Be aware you will need to produce a negative COVID test from 1-3 days prior to arrival. (1-4 days prior for international participants.) An at-home test is acceptable. In the US, you can order free tests at COVIDtest.gov or you can buy tests online or in local pharmacies and retail stores. Your safety is important to IHS 54. The symposium facility is equipped with wipe buckets and sanitation stations. Frequent hand washing is highly recommended. Masks are optional. Comfort level stickers will be available at the symposium registration table.
Upcoming symposium deadlines for online orders and submissions can be found on the HOME page of IHS54.com. Closing soon are deadlines for student competitions (Jazz Horn, Natural Horn, University and Pre-University Horn Quartet, University Horn Ensemble), IHS 54 T-Shirts, BBQ Round-up, and the King Ranch Tour.
For the July issue of Horn and More, Mars Gelfo, founder of Modacity, a music practice platform that accelerates learning, presents this month’s must-read feature article on the value of coaches for musicians. Jeff Snedeker is at it again with another tremendous publication. He discusses his new book release about the development of the Paris Conservatoire since its founding. This issue also introduces you to Weverton Santos, a Brazilian horn player and countertenor whose TikTok videos wow us with the warmth of his sound. We meet the Metropolitan Horn Authority whose founding member, Peter DelGrosso, shares the group’s innovative approach to horn quartet ensemble and literature. Continuing our walk around the globe, don’t miss articles by Joshua Pantoja, Keith Eitzen, and pedagogical concepts from Félix Dervaux.
As I have nothing but the IHS 54 symposium on my brain, I bid you adieux and will see you soon at the biggest horn party of the year!
Jennifer Ratchford Sholtis
IHS 54 Host
Coaching to Thrive
by Mars Gelfo
June 2014. I sat on a red couch in Hong Kong, calculating hour estimates in a spreadsheet. How much had I practiced horn since the beginning? 9,980 hours was my best guess.
Seven music school rejections; degrees in cognitive science and computer science far behind me; why was I leaving my position in the Hong Kong Philharmonic after six seasons of hard-earned dreams come true?
"If anything, I've mastered being self-critical while endeavoring to play horn well," I admitted.
I decided my next 10,000 hours would be dedicated to something different.
Here is your invitation to consider: What will your next 10K hours be devoted to mastering? and how will you get there?
Because realize it or not, in every moment you are practicing something.
In my case, after a post-audition hospitalization, I knew that music needed to be a practice and path of wellness for me.
I traveled the world working not just with great brass & voice teachers but with mindset coaches, hypnotherapists, yogis, psychotherapists, bodyworkers, shamanic healers, kung fu masters, and more…
…and it worked.
Dreams came true – international tours with San Francisco Symphony, a sizzling performance playing principal horn on Mahler 5 in front of thousands…even dreams I could never have imagined…like jamming with the Costa Rican Minister of Culture on calypso music during a Caribbean surfing and permaculture immersion trip.
Transformational music practice indeed!
If you could transform your musical life, what would you choose?
I’ve always been a natural teacher. Ask me to break anything down into its component steps and operationalize a plan – it’s something I do for...
Hand and/or Valve
by Jeffrey L. Snedeker
Hand and/or Valve: Horn Teaching at the Paris Conservatoire in the 19th Century, and the Transition from Natural Horn to Valved Horn
The transition from the natural horn to the valved horn in 19th-century Paris was different from similar transitions in other countries. While valve technology was received happily by players of other members of the brass family, strong support for the natural horn, with its varied color palette and virtuoso performance traditions, slowed the reception and application of the valve to the horn. Nowhere was this support more evident than at the Paris Conservatoire.
The traditions of virtuoso natural horn playing at the Conservatoire were established by its first teachers, in particular Frédéric Duvernoy and Heinrich Domnich, but even they presented the horn in different lights. Duvernoy was a noted soloist whose method emphasized the development of hand technique that produced even tone colors over a three-octave range. Domnich, a student of Punto, was more of a pedagogue, producing a method that was more comprehensive in support of the traditions of high horn and low horn playing as well as the development of a chromatic range covering more than four octaves. Domnich also promoted even tone colors throughout the range yet celebrated the variety of colors as a benefit to the horn’s expressive potential. The successor to both teachers was the Domnich’s former student Louis François Dauprat, who took Domnich’s ideas and expanded them. It is clear that Dauprat’s method is a significant step forward—482 pages long and divided into three large sections, it contains not only numerous exercises for technical development but also extensive written discussions on topics that range from...
IHS Annual General Meeting
The IHS will be holding its Annual General Meeting on Saturday, August 6 at 9 AM central time (USA). If you are attending IHS 54 in person, please join us! We plan to live-stream this meeting on our Facebook page as well and hope you will tune in.
Meet Hornist and Countertenor Weverton Santos
My name is Weverton Santos, and I am a Brazilian from Sarzedo city in the state of Minas Gerais. Music started to be part of my life when I was 11 years old through the Musical Project in Sarzedo where I was introduced to the horn. A few years later, I graduated with a bachelor's degree in horn from the State University of Minas Gerais. After this, I was invited to be a guest musician with the Minas Gerais Symphony Orchestra where I continue to play. Among other educational experiences are several masterclasses with national and international teachers as well as some competitions in which I was a prize winner. I have also been able to learn about other cultures outside of Brazil, and these opportunities provided me with a great deal of musical and professional maturity. In 2015, I attended a Baroque Music Seminar in Rostock, Germany. In 2019, I was selected to be part of The Orchestra of the Americas Mexico tour. In 2020, I was selected to participate in a chamber music festival in Portillo, Chile. And earlier this year, I learned that I had been accepted into the master’s program at the Eastman School of Music where I will begin study this fall.
But what about singing? Where does it come from? I started singing in church in Sarzedo with my brother and sister after I had already begun playing the horn. Singing helped me better understand the challenges of being a horn player. After a few years, I started to study singing with the same determination with which I studied horn, and I felt a noticeable difference when playing the horn. That's when I thought, "What if I combined the two abilities?" So I did. Working seriously on both, I could see more clearly that both were part of my deepest essence. Since then, I can't do without either. One helps the other, and both help me.
por Joshua Pantoja
Me considero un apasionado de la trompa francesa, más allá del estilo o el género que se esté interpretando; desde la música sinfónica hasta la música popular, mi interés personal siempre ha sido transmitir música del más alto nivel, sin importar el escenario, sacar la trompa del encasillamiento de un instrumento usado exclusivamente para la música sinfónica y permitirle al mundo verla como el instrumento versátil que en realidad es. Desde mis inicios en la música, he encontrado fascinante la posibilidad de tocar sin necesidad de que haya algo escrito, de crear desde adentro y desarrollar una idea a través de la creatividad. Mi admiración por grandes trompetistas como Dizzy Gillespie, Louis Armstrong , Wynton Marsalis, Arturo Sandoval, me motivó a tratar de llevar a la trompa francesa su manera de tocar y así fue como empecé a explorar el mundo de la improvisación, de forma empírica e intuitiva, ya que mi enfoque principal era la música clásica y mi formación como músico de orquesta.
Hace cinco años decidí, por fin, comenzar a darle forma a mi idea de usar la trompa dentro del jazz de una manera estructurada y es así como llegó a conocer a mi Profesor y amigo Julio “Julito” Alvarado, quien es uno de los trompetistas más reconocidos en Puerto Rico por su aporte al Jazz y la música caribeña. Con él comienzo mi proceso de aprendizaje formal del jazz y a la misma vez comienzo a indagar cómo podría compartir este conocimiento con los músicos de formación clásica, de una manera clara y que resulte familiar para aquellos que no han tenido la oportunidad de tener contacto con el mundo de la improvisación. De esta manera, surge la idea de...
Buy the Book!
Mexican Music for Horn at IHS 54
by Keith Eitzen
The Río Bravo Horn Quartet is a group of professional hornists who together have a combined 107 years playing in Mexican orchestras, and we have joined to present Mexican music for the horn at the IHS 54 Symposium. Mexico has a long history of classical music and many full-time professional ensembles. When I arrived in Mexico in 1985, the hornists were almost all foreigners, but the horn has become much more popular for nationals in the last few years.
We are excited to share new recital music with the IHS.
The Río Bravo Horn Quartet members are (clockwise from top left):
• Claire Hellweg, principal horn in the Orquesta Sinfónica de Guanajuato and professor at the Universidad de Guanajuato;
• Jonathan Wilson, principal horn in the Orquesta Sinfónica de Aguascalientes and professor at the Universidad Autónoma de Zacatecas;
• Daniel Flores, principal horn in the Orquesta Sinfónica de Xalapa and professor at the Instituto Superior de Música del Estado de Veracruz; and,
• Keith Eitzen, second horn in the Orquesta Sinfónica de Xalapa and professor at the Universidad Veracruzana.
IHS 54 host Jennifer Sholtis contacted us about organizing participation from Mexico for the Symposium. Claire and I first talked about playing pieces for horn and piano. Then she suggested adding some friends to play the Chavez quartet. I didn’t know the work, but soon we had developed an entire Mexican-themed program.
Our recital will open with Jonathan performing the Rapsodia Bambuco No. 3, op. 6 no. 2, by the Colombian/Mexican composer and hornist Gabriel Soto Mendez who is best known as the arranger of Bésame Mucho as recorded by the Berlin Philharmonic horns.
Daniel will play a new work...
Metropolitan Horn Authority
left to right: Blair Hamrick, Ser Konvalin, Kevin Newton, Peter DelGrosso
Since its founding in 2017, Metropolitan Horn Authority has been the premier contemporary horn ensemble in New York City. MHA members include Peter DelGrosso (founder), Blair Hamrick (Contemporaneous, eGALitarian), Ser Konvalin (The Orchestra Now), and Kevin Newton (Imani Winds). The group was formed to highlight the horn quartet largely through original music performed in conventional and unconventional venues. The impetus for this ensemble gained momentum when MHA won the Metropolitan Transit Authority Arts & Design’s “Music Under New York” competition, performing at Rikers Island, and then being featured soloists with The Yonkers Philharmonic—all within their first year. While continuing to perform as a horn quartet, Metropolitan Horn Authority has expanded the ensemble to include electric guitar, bass, and drums. This unique septet performs original arrangements and compositions to rave reviews at live music venues such as Rockwood Music Hall and DROM. Earlier this year, MHA completed a successful tour through Virginia that included educational outreach concerts and a masterclass and recital at Virginia Commonwealth University. Currently, Metropolitan Horn Authority is preparing for an Educational Residency at the Pierrot Chamber Music Festival beginning on July 21, 2022. Look out for more recordings and future tour dates. Metropolitan Horn Authority is bringing the horn to everyone!
Working as Festival Staff
by Martina Adams
I have been involved in music festivals every summer for as long as I can remember. My mom was on the faculty of the Csehy Summer School of Music, and I started going with her to camp around the age of five. While our parents were teaching, I would hang out with the other faculty members’ children, but when I was old enough, I started attending as a camper for another 4 or 5 years. Csehy was the first place I ever played a horn: my mom told the horn teacher that I was interested, so she let me blow a few notes on her horn, and I was hooked.
Since Csehy, I have attended several other festivals, varying in size and type, including the Philadelphia International Music Festival (PIMF), Curtis Summerfest, Boston University Tanglewood Institute Horn Workshop, the All-City Philadelphia Orchestra’s Italy tour, Imani Winds Chamber Music Festival, and the Atlantic Brass Quintet Seminar.
In my third year as an undergraduate student, I decided I didn’t want to pay to attend a summer festival but wanted to see if I could actually make money while not in school. “Normal kids” seemed to always have summer jobs; could there also be a summer music job option? I had been thinking about my time at PIMF as a student. I enjoyed it then, and had some friends who had worked there, so I decided to reach out.
I’m currently completing my Master’s degree at the Curtis Institute of Music where I study with Jennifer Montone and Jeffrey Lang of the Philadelphia Orchestra. I received my Bachelor’s degree in Horn Performance at Temple University where I had also studied with Jeff Lang. I’m from Philadelphia, attended Philadelphia Orchestra concerts as a kid, and knew I wanted to go to Temple from a young age since my entire family studied music...
Historic Brass Society: Call for Contributions
Sixth International Romantic Brass Symposium
Romantic Brass in Context: 19th-Century Brass Instruments in Military, Church, Chamber, Opera, and Orchestra
Thursday April 20 – Saturday April 22, 2023, in Bern (Switzerland)
Held by Hochschule der Künste Bern (HKB)
The well-established Romantic Brass Symposia in Bern present current research on brass instruments, concentrating on music of the 19th century (1789–1914). After conferences on the keyed trumpet and the ophicleide, French horns, the materiality of brass instruments, the saxhorn, the conservation of historical brass instruments, and the trombone and acoustics, this sixth edition is open to all brass-related topics, highlighting the interaction of brass instruments in their musical contexts. It will be held in collaboration with the Historic Brass Society. Keynote addresses will be given by Sandy Coffin, Ignace De Keyser, Trevor Herbert, Sabine Klaus, Arnold Myers, and Anneke Scott.
We call for papers, lecture recitals, and concerts with spoken commentary on all topics of brass instruments from the 19th century, including historically informed performance, style, repertoire, history, and instruments. We expect that presentations will be given live and in person. The official language for the conference is English.
Papers and lecture recitals should be no longer than 20 minutes (followed by 10 minutes for discussion); shorter presentations (10 min. plus 5 min. for discussion) are equally welcome. Concerts should not exceed 45 minutes. (Details of available keyboard instruments will be available on the website).
Please mail submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org by September 30, 2022. Proposals should be in English (c. 400 words), describing the...
Overcoming Difficulties, and Learning by Listening (Part 1)
by Félix Dervaux
Félix Dervaux is a horn player from France. He is the former solo horn of the Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam. He currently enjoys a solo and chamber music career, and lives in Vienna, Austria. I interviewed him about his upbringing as a horn player and his advice to students. The essay below puts Félix’s words into a narrative flow about horn playing and pedagogy. This is the first of a two-part article.
I grew up in the north of France, 200 km north of Paris, where there are many municipal bands and orchestras. That’s where I started playing; wind bands are an important social tradition in northern France, with origins in the working classes. I went to college at the CNSMD (Conservatoire Supérieur de Musique et de Danse) in Lyon, studying with David Guerrier and Michel Molinaro. David is an excellent horn and trumpet player: he had won first prize in the Munich Competition on trumpet, but then played principal horn in the Orchestre National de France before starting a solo career, and then coming back to play principal trumpet in the orchestra of Radio France a couple of years ago.
He had many different points of view because of his playing career. I was a good but not excellent player when I entered music school, and Guerrier explained that I had to fix all the parts of my playing that were not excellent. He was demanding, especially concerning my low register, which I had trouble with at that time. Both of my teachers were very strict with me about that. They insisted that I should not only aim to be a good high horn player but, rather, to be good in all possible registers, and therefore assigning me all kinds of low register pieces. I could not even play the Till Eulenspiegel opening...
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IHS 54 Master Schedule
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