We’re excited to share with you today the Wind Ensemble’s performance of Roger Dickerson’s “Essay for Band.” Composed in 1957, “Essay for Band” is a great piece in the Wind Band medium, however it is not performed nearly as often as it should be, so we were delighted to perform it back in September. We hope you enjoy!
Spring ensemble auditions are coming up later this month. Information and excerpts for brass, woodwinds, and percussion are available at the link below. Good luck to all auditioning, and happy practicing!
Today, we’re sharing the video of our Wind Ensemble’s performance of Richard Strauss’s “Wiener Philharmoniker Fanfare” with you. This was the first piece that Prof. Junkin conducted with the UT Wind Ensemble in 1988, and he figured it was the perfect piece to begin our first concert back after the pandemic. We hope you enjoy!
We are so enjoying making live music together again, and we’re excited to begin sharing performance videos with you. Check out our Wind Ensemble’s performance of Omar Thomas’s (@omarthomasmusic) “Of Our New Day Begun” from our first concert this season. We could think of no better way to conclude our first concert back. We hope you enjoy!
The Butler School of Music at The University of Texas at Austin has named Cliff Croomes as the new associate director of bands and the director of the Longhorn Band. He will step into this new role June 1.
“I am thrilled to return to my Longhorn roots at The University of Texas at Austin,” Croomes said. “I have a long history with the Longhorn Band, and it’s a dream come true to lead this program. I’m honored to work with these talented students as we write the band’s next chapter.”
Croomes is a 2001 graduate of the Butler School of Music and an alumnus of the Longhorn Band. He most recently served as the assistant director of bands at Louisiana State University and as the music director and principal conductor of the Civic Orchestra of Baton Rouge.
“We are excited to welcome Dr. Cliff Croomes as he returns to the Forty Acres,” said Professor Jerry Junkin, director of University Bands. “A native Texan, former member of the Longhorn Band, successful Texas public school band director, and most recently on the faculty of Louisiana State University, Dr. Croomes is one of the finest musicians and human beings that I know. I am extremely excited to watch the Longhorn Band under his leadership, and I know that our students will love working with him.”
The Longhorn Band, also known as the Showband of the Southwest, was founded in 1900 by a distinguished professor of chemistry, Eugene P. Schoch. The band performs at all in-state football games, for various Texas Longhorn athletics teams and at special pep rallies and parades throughout the year. The band includes more than 380 students from across many majors, all of whom rehearse and perform as part of a year-round Longhorn Band course offered by the Butler School of Music. Croomes will be the 15th director of the Longhorn Band and succeeds Scott Hanna in the role.
Prior to his time in Baton Rouge, Croomes served as the director of bands at Georgetown High School in Georgetown, Texas. Under his baton, the Georgetown Wind Symphony was named a 2014 Mark of Excellence Commended Winner. Earlier in his career Croomes was the associate director of bands at Douglas MacArthur High School in San Antonio, Texas. He has also taught at Westview Middle School, Pflugerville High School and Bastrop High School. He has also served on the faculty of the University of Texas Longhorn Music Camp from 2001 to 2014.
Croomes earned his Bachelor of Music Studies degree from UT’s Butler School of Music, and he holds both his Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees from LSU. He is an alumnus of the Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps from Rosemont, Illinois. He has performed with ensembles throughout the United States, London, Paris, Switzerland, Germany and Italy and has served as an international consultant throughout Japan. He has served as an adjudicator and clinician for marching and concert bands throughout Texas and Louisiana.
Croomes holds an artist/educator endorsement with Innovative Percussion Inc. and is a founding board member of the composer diversity initiative “And We Were Heard,” as well as a member of the Dr. William P. Foster Project advisory board. Croomes holds an honorary membership in Kappa Kappa Psi, as well as professional memberships in the Texas Bandmasters Association, Texas Music Adjudicators Association, the Percussive Arts Society, Louisiana Music Educators Association and the Texas Music Educators Association.
The Butler School of Music is proud to announce that Dr. LaToya Webb will be joining us this summer as Assistant Director of the Longhorn Band and Assistant Professor of Practice in Conducting. Currently an instructor of wind conducting at Auburn and Grambling State universities, Dr. Webb is an active presenter and writer on topics of bias, diversity, equity, and inclusion in music education. In 2021 alone she will have appeared as a speaker at meetings of NAfME, the College Music Society, and the Midwest Clinic. She recently co-founded the organization I See You: Affirming Representation in Music. Its mission states: “All minoritized students deserve to see themselves reflected and affirmed in and through the music community.” As a conductor, she was the recipient of a Reynolds Conducting Institute Fellowship in 2019. Dr. Webb holds degrees from Norfolk State University, George Mason University, and the PhD in Music Education from Auburn University. Director of Bands Jerry Junkin says, “We are so pleased to welcome Dr. Webb to our UT family! There is little doubt that she is indeed a rising star in the profession, and I know that our students, as well as our colleagues, will benefit greatly from her inspiring musicianship and leadership. LaToya Webb will bring her infectious personality and work ethic to Austin, and we could not possibly be more excited to begin our work together!”
We’re happy today to share with you our Wind Ensemble’s performance from Spring 2019 of Leonard Bernstein’s Suite from “On the Waterfront.” Bernstein was asked by film producer Sam Siegel to provide the original film score for On the Waterfront, the 1954 movie directed by Elia Kazan and starring Marlon Brando as an up-and-coming boxer who is persuaded by a local mob boss to throw a fight and subsequently finds himself tangled up with the mob. His score won great critical acclaim and was nominated for—but did not win—an Academy Award. The composer himself arranged the symphonic suite for use in concert settings in 1955. We hope you enjoy this performance!