Great Plains Regional
The North Texas Euphonium Quartet presented an incredible half hour of euphonium mastery by expertly performing a program of very difficult ensemble repertoire. Their program began with Go by Dr. Mike Forbes. The rhythmic cohesion combined with the unity of tone and phrasing was impressive. After the beautiful harmonies of Philip Sparke's Song for Ina, which featured conference host Dr. Ryan Robinson playing the solo part on tuba, the quartet switched genres and brought a comedic aspect to their performance. The introduction to "Tico, Tico" had the large crowd roaring with laughter, especially after the ensemble's unique vocal rhythmic outbursts. The amazing part of this act is that while it is humorous in its onset, the virtuosity of the playing takes the show to another level of entertaining. Before finishing their program with perhaps the fastest Bugler's Holiday ever performed on euphoniums, the group performed a new piece called Tipping Point by Patrick Geren. This piece was written in homage to Gustav Holst, but incorporates jazz and hip hop elements while requiring the performers to play intricate percussive rhythms as a group. The NTEQ is a must see ensemble, as they do an amazing job of blending virtuosic performance with an engaging and humorous stage presence.
- Dr. Jesse Orth