Tag Archives: Chamber Orchestra

A New Chapter

The page has turned.

RBD and mda have both moved on from our untimely departure from our previous jobs (read our blog ‘Struggling Arts Hits Home’ directly after we lost our jobs). mda has found a great new home with the Percussive Arts Society or PAS, where he is now the Director of Marketing and Communications. Congrats to you mda!!

I, however, has gone a slightly different path. Instead of hitting the pavement and going out and looking for another job (hopefully within the arts industry), I decided that since I had enough gigs and money saved up to pay bills through the calendar year, I would invest my time into the bass trombone, tenor trombone, orchestral trombone and jazz trombone. My goal was (and still is) to become a solid player on both the bass trombone and tenor trombone in both the jazz and classical worlds. No small order to be sure.

I’ve always had one foot in the classical world and one foot in the jazz world. I work in both and have been successful in both. But I wanted to be the best all around player. I wanted to be able to go do a small group jazz gig on my tenor trombone, and turn around and win a bass trombone orchestral audition. Well, five months later, I’m getting closer and closer to my goal.

I recently won a position with the Sinfonia da Camera out of Urbana Illinois, conducted by Ian Hobson and I am also on contract with the Anderson Symphony Orchestra in Anderson Indiana conducted by Rick Sowers. These are two small orchestras with a grand total of 12 concerts I’ll play, but its a start and I’ll be blogging about each orchestra as the season unfurls. Each orchestra has a good brass section, clear and easy going conductors and are playing good repertoire so it should be a fun season of playing!

Later this week, I’ll be blogging about working within the Jazz and Classical world and expanding on how I am practicing for each genre!


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La Boheme: Preview

La Boheme original Opera Poster

This Friday at 8pm and Sunday at 2pm, the Indianapolis Opera and the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra are presenting the wildly popular opera by Giacomo Puccini, La Boheme at Clowes Memorial Hall.

Click HERE for a Quick rundown of the plot and characters.

Clowes Hall

A trombone players view of Clowes Hall

I have the privilege to be playing in the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra for this production of La Boheme. This is one of my favorite operas. I was fortunate to play this opera while attending the Indiana University School of Music in Bloomington Indiana. That experience has been one of the highlights of my career thus far! This opera has aria after aria of beautiful music. Although encroaching on 2 hours and 45 minutes, which could be a tad long for some, the action and the drama will pull each

James Caraher conducting La Boheme

audience member to the end of this outstanding production.

The sets are simply beautiful (what I’ve seen of them at least) and the cast is wonderful! I feel so lucky to be in a town that does these incredible productions with great orchestras (either the Indianapolis Symphony or the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra) and a great, clear and well versed conductor in James Caraher.

Trombone player's view of ACT III, La Boheme

It is interesting playing in the pit, especially as a trombone player. See, we do not play all that much. On average I play every 6 – 12 minutes and have very little cues to know exactly where I am! Throughout this blog, you get to see my view of the opera, which is mainly the conductor, my music and the hall. Every now and again I can see an actor/singer on stage! BUT, that doesn’t diminish my excitement and enjoyment for this art-form! Given a choice, I would love to be stuck under the stage in the pit and play incredible opera music every weekend!

However, there are too many other things to do and play in this musical life, so I simply enjoy the opportunity when I get them!

See you at the OPERA!!

~ Rich

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