On May 3 the Chabot College wind symphony held a music festival conducted by Timothy Harris, Director of Bands and Music Department Coordinator at Chabot College, with clarinetist Duy Tran and the Mt. Eden high school orchestra as special guests.
The show began with a performance by the Mount Eden High School orchestra and was followed by three performances by Chabot’s wind symphony, one of which featured a solo by Chabot student and pharmacist Dr. Duy Tran. Dr. Tran’s solo during a piece composed by renowned American music composer, Johnathan Leshnoff, highlighted his amazing breath control and skill while demonstrating why, “He is one of the finest clarinetists here at Chabot,” according to Harris.
After Dr. Tran’s performance, the wind symphony performed “Variations on America” which was composed by Charles Ives. This piece was specifically chosen for this performance, according to Harris, because the composer was only seventeen at the time that he wrote it – around the same age as the Mount Eden students in the audience, giving them something to relate to.
For their final performance, the Chabot students performed a Spanish opera titled “El Gato Montes” written by Manuel Penella about the love affair between a bull fighter and the woman he loves. This dramatic piece is well known throughout the musical world as it was the inspiration for many other march composers like John Philip Sousa who wrote the national march, “The Stars and Stripes Forever.”
The students in both the Mount Eden orchestra and the Chabot wind symphony showed incredible talent and skill during their performances and that could be seen by how well they were received by the audience. Applause could be heard before and after every piece and audience members whispered about their approval throughout the performances.
After the festival was over a lot of the audience members spoke about how much they enjoyed the performances, with most being supportive family members of both the Chabot and Mount Eden ensembles. First year Chabot student Natalie Munoz attended the show after seeing the flier on Chabot’s website and said that she really enjoyed all the performances, stating: “I was in the orchestra at my high school, so it was cool to see high school students and college students play at the same level.”