By Courtney Fowler, Staff Reporter

Elise Musicant in Nordica Auditorium (photo courtesy of Gia Pilgrim)

Elise Musicant in Nordica Auditorium (photo courtesy of Gia Pilgrim)

Focusing on swing bands and jazz music, the UMF Concert Band has been preparing for their upcoming spring performance, taking place on May 3rd in Nordica Auditorium.

“We generally have a focus for each one of our concerts,” said Elise Musicant, a junior band member and both flute and piccolo player. “Last semester we focused on Mannheim Steamroller Christmas music, but this semester we’re playing a lot of big band music.”

Most students will be able to recognize the songs being played at the upcoming performance. Part of the concert consists of  “It Don’t Mean a Thing If It Ain’t Got That Swing” by Duke Ellington and an arrangement of “Happy” by Pharrell.

In addition to the popular, well-known songs, the band will also be performing a piece titled “Rupture”, composed by Musicant herself.

“I’m honored to be playing a song written by Elise,” said Chris Coleman, a junior band member and trombone player. “It’s great that we have this type of talent in our band and are able to showcase it in the upcoming performance.”

While Musicant is thrilled to have her music be a part of the concert, she has never composed for a band of this size. “I’ve had my music performed before in high school,” said Musicant. “I arranged a duet for flute and oboe and two trios designed for flute, oboe, and clarinet.”

Humbled and grateful for the experience, Musicant is excited to see her piece finally come together for the spring concert. “I’m extremely grateful to have a conductor who’s willing to work with me,” said Musicant. “And especially grateful for band members who are patient as I learn what it means to compose for an entire concert band.”

Sophomore Kat Smedberg heard of Musicant’s original piece and is looking forward to attending the performance in May.

“I think it’s cool how the band is performing a song by one of their own members,” said Smedberg. “More than this though, I love music and can’t wait to watch the band perform.”

As the band has been hard at work practicing their music, they have also been encouraging other students and community members to attend the final performance of the year.

“We could always use more people in the crowd,” said Coleman. “It’s nice to see people attend the concert who are as excited about music as we are.”

Along with Coleman, Musicant also expressed her encouragement for others to attend the spring concert. “Not only is it fun, but students can get in for free with a student ID,” she said. “There is no excuse not to go!”

The spring performance is set to take place on May 3rd at 3pm in Nordica Auditorium. For more information, contact Elise Musicant at elise.musicant@maine.edu.