NATCHITOCHES – Northwestern State University’s Wind Symphony has been selected to perform at the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles conference in Buñol, Spain July 10-13, 2019. WASBE is the only international organization of wind band conductors, composers, performers, publishers, teachers, instrument makers and friends of wind music. It is the only organization completely dedicated to enhancing the quality of the wind band throughout the world and exposing its members to new worlds of repertoire, musical culture, people and places.
“In the band directing profession, this is considered a significant achievement,” said Director of Bands Dr. Jeff Mathews. “Bands from all over the world apply to perform at this conference and only a few are chosen. An international panel of band directors reviews the applications and recordings of each group and then decides who will be invited to perform.”
The NSU Wind Symphony is a concert band that performs in winter and spring. Participation is by audition and members are regarded as among the top musicians in the department.
“At Northwestern, we are famous for our marching band, so this is fantastic for the program that our concert band — our serious musical side — is being recognized as well,” Mathews said. “Some of our best recruiters are band directors and when they see our concert band being recognized like this it another way to encourage students to choose NSU.”
To apply for WASBE, Mathews submitted a recording of the ensemble’s spring concert for review by the WASBE Artistic Planning Committee. The recording was peer-reviewed by an international committee of wind band conductors. He also submitted concert programs covering the last three years to inform the Artistic Planning Committee of the style and caliber of work the ensemble typically performs, a history of the program and a proposed program of what they will perform at the WASBE conference in Spain.
“Since becoming Director of Bands, one of my goals has been to grow the reputation of our concert bands through performances like this one at the WASBE conference,” Mathews said. “Many folks that have never heard of us will be looking us up soon.”
Buñol is a municipality in the province of Valencia. Alumni, friends and others are welcome to join the trip, which departs the U.S. July 7 and returns July 14. Details will be available soon.
NSU’s performance at the conference will be live-streamed for internet viewers and recordings will be available for purchase of the performance.