The Scranton Brass Orchestra will perform with guest tuba soloist Sam Pilafian Sunday, June 16, at 7:30 p.m. in the Houlihan-McLean Center at The University of Scranton. Admission is free, and the performance is open to the public. Doors open at 6:45 p.m., and seating is on a first-come, first-seated basis.
The Scranton Brass Orchestra, sponsored and presented by The University of Scranton and under the direction of Mark Gould and Cheryl Y. Boga, is comprised of 27 professional brass and percussion players from the region. Boga serves as the director of performance music at The University of Scranton, a position she has held for more than 30 years. Gould was principal trumpet of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra from 1974-2003 and has been on the faculty of The Juilliard School since 1982. Additionally, he joined the faculty of the Manhattan School of Music in September 2004, and currently chairs the brass department there. He is also the director of The New York Trumpet Ensemble.
Pilafian, an award-winning tubaist, has recorded and performed with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Duke Ellington Orchestra, Lionel Hampton and Pink Floyd, among others, and was co-founder of the Empire Brass Quintet. He has also recorded 15 solo CDs, and his recent solo performances have taken him to Canada, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Japan, Italy, Austria, Germany and England. In addition, he is an arranger, composer and recording producer. Pilafain’s original piece “Elegy and Rave” for concert band and percussion ensemble, written in celebration of the life of Chris Nelhybel, was commissioned and performed as part of the University’s World Premiere Composition Series in 2012.
Pilafian recently joined the faculty at the University of Miami Frost School of Music after retiring from Arizona State University, having spent more than 35 years serving on the faculties of Arizona State University, Boston University and The Tanglewood Institute. He serves on the board of directors of the International Tuba Euphonium Association.
Pilafian and Gould will also be among a number of internationally acclaimed artist/teachers participating in the third annual Scranton Brass Seminar, which will be held at the University from Monday, June 17, through Friday, June 28. Other respected brass musicians and teachers participating in the seminar include Wycliffe Gordon, Caleb Hudson, Chris Jaudes, Joseph Boga, Jessica Santiago and William Kenny, among others. The seminar is an intensive, two-week summer program for intermediate to advanced high school, college or adult brass players and teachers. Participants in each year’s seminar are afforded special opportunities throughout the following academic year to observe rehearsals and participate in masterclasses by world-class brass players who visit the University as guest artists in the Performance Music at Scranton concert series.
Scranton Brass Orchestra members and instruments played are as follows: Eb Trumpet/Cornet: Joseph Boga and Jesse Morvan; Bb Trumpet/Cornet: Carl Achhammer, Joseph Boga, John Carey, Joe Devizia, Mark Howanetz, Jeff Leas, Jesse Morvan, Chris Newman, Jonathan Searfoss, Matt Wren, Mike Yevich and Gould; Flugelhorn: Leas; Horns: Earl Cottrell, William Kenny and Jessica Santiago; Trombone: Jerome Campbell, Rick Chamberlain, Ilan Raschkovsky and Geoff Speicher; Baritone/Euphonium: Ryan Berry, Otis French, Wayne Smith, Chris Wilski; Tuba: Steve Lakawicz, Ryan Lamoreux and Geoff Speicher; Percussion: Janelle Decker, Frank Torquato and Cheryl Boga; Piano: Ron Stabinsky.