Tahlequah Daily Press

February 18, 2013

Tooting their horns

Special Writer

TAHLEQUAH — Trumpeters of all ages gathered together to express their love of the instrument at the sixth annual NSU Trumpet Festival Saturday.

High school and university students from around the area attended the festival in order to experience the knowledge of trumpet professionals, according to Dr. Jason Dovel, NSU assistant professor of trumpet and event host.

“The principal focus of this festival is educational,” Dovel said. “Students come here to learn about the trumpet from professionals so they can improve their techniques and practices on the trumpet.”

Throughout the day guest trumpeters hoed concerts and discussed techniques on areas such as improving sound quality, rehearsal practices and general trumpet performance knowledge.

Josh Allen, Tahlequah High School band director, said his trumpeters attend every year.

“This year, we have 16 trumpet players, grades six through 12, from Tahlequah Public Schools [attending the] festival,”  said Allen. “At the event, students will be immersed in trumpet all day. They will learn rehearsal and practice skills. I hope this inspires them to take the trumpet past high school and into college.”

Allen believes the event provides opportunities for music students.

“NSU has one of the most prestigious trumpet festivals in the country,” he said.

NSU student and music major Sean Ryan, a sophomore from Claremore played in the festival for the second year this year.

“I think this is a great opportunity for kids to meet great trumpet instructors and learn from them,” Ryan said. “I am excited to learn new things.”

Ryan said he hopes to learn more about working in the field of professional music to make his sound good and be marketable. He is a member of the NSU Trumpet Ensemble and the NSU Baroque Trumpet Ensemble.

The Baroque ensemble plays songs without using valves, as trumpeters did centuries ago when there were no valves on the instrument, according to Dovel.

Music vendors displayed trumpets and accessories, such as mutes, mouthpieces, lubricants and tuners, to keep trumpets in good working order.

Walter Johnson, a retired band director from Keys who taught in Eastern Oklahoma for more than 30 years, now represents The Music Store in Tulsa.

“This event gets bigger and bigger each year,” Johnson said. “It’s a great thing for young trumpeters to come here to learn.”

Charles Geyer, a worldwide master class presenter was featured artist of the festival. Geyer has served on the faculties of the American Conservatory of Music, Rice University and Eastman School of Music, and has recorded and played on international broadcasts with the Chicago and Houston Symphony Orchestras.

“Charles Geyer is one of the premier trumpet players of the country,” said Dovel.


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