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University of Iowa News Release

Release: April 11, 2002

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Tubist Robert Yeats Plays Final Concert With Iowa Brass Quintet April 22

The Iowa Brass Quintet, a resident faculty ensemble at the University of Iowa School of Music, will present a free concert at 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 22 in Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus. The concert will mark the final appearance with the quintet of their tubist, Robert Yeats, who will retire from the UI at the end of the academic year.

Having joined the UI faculty in 1973, Yeats has been a member of the quintet for almost 30 years. "That's a lot of notes," observed the group's trombonist, David Gier.

The Iowa Brass Quintet (IBQ) will be assisted on the program by two guest performers, Aren Van Houzen, a doctoral trumpet student in the School of Music, and Jessica Wach, a 2002 UI graduate who now teaches instrumental music at Xavier High School in Cedar Rapids.

The IBQ performs on the UI campus each semester and for schools, universities, civic concert associations, and professional meetings throughout the United States. Founded in the early 1950s, the group has been widely acclaimed for its artistry in the performance of music of all periods and premieres of new compositions. Its current members are David Greenhoe and Barbara Deur, trumpets; Jeffrey Agrell, horn; Gier; and Yeats.

The April 22 concert will comprise four works:
-- "Shaker Tunes" by Gwyneth Walker, a suite of movements based on pre-existent Shaker songs that was commissioned by the Constitution Brass Quintet of Vermont;
-- The Second Brass Quintet of Ivan Jevtic, a Yugoslavian composer who studied in France and Austira and has taught in Brazil;
-- "No Comment" by Czech composer Juraj Filas; and
-- the Brass Septet in F minor by Jean Sibelius, arranged for modern brass instruments by Holger Fransman, a distinguished Finnish horn player.

The Shakers were an 18th and 19th-century religious sect based in the Northeastern United States. Singing was a featured part of Shaker life, often accompanied by dance and the clapping of hands. The songs upon which Walker's arrangements are based were collected from 19th-century communities in Maine, New Hampshire and New York. The suite includes the popular "Simple Gifts" as well as several less-familiar songs. According to the composer, each movement explores, expands upon, or re-interprets the original melody.

Filas represents a wave of neo-romanticism that has appeared among Czech composers since mid 1970s. A 1981 graduate of the Prague Academy of Arts and Music, he has been part of Czech concert life both as composer and performer. He was a member of the Kuhn Mixed Choir for five years, and since 1985 he has been a teacher at the Prague Academy and editor for the Supraphon publishing house.

The composer wrote: "It is my dream to come close to such impressive and beautiful music as composed by the giants of the past, especially Verdi, Beethoven, Mahler, but through my own means, to impart a human message, to create musical beauty in my own and topical way. For me it is unthinkable to cast away the tradition, developed for centuries by hundreds of composers as the European musical culture."

Greenhoe has been on the faculty of the UI School of Music and the principal trumpeter of the Quad City Symphony since 1979. He is also chair of the brass area at the UI and is active as a soloist and recitalist. During summer seasons he performs as solo trumpeter with the Lake Placid (N.Y.) Sinfonietta, a post he has held since 1975.

Deur is a member of the Quad Cities Symphony and has been a trumpet instructor at UI. She has performed widely as a soloist and clinician, has been principal trumpet of the Des Moines Symphony and has been a member of the Cedar Rapids Symphony.

Gier came to the UI in August 1995. He has taught at Baylor University and Central Connecticut State University. He began his professional career in New England as a member of the Springfield (Mass.) Symphony and Orchestra New England. He has performed with numerous professional ensembles, including the New Haven, Hartford, Waco and San Angelo symphonies, and Keith Brion's Peerless Sousa Band.

Agrell joined the UI School of Music faculty in 2000 after a 25 year career as associate principal horn with the Lucerne (Switzerland) Symphony Orchestra, playing symphonic music, opera, operetta, ballet, musicals choral music and chamber music. He is also an active composer who has had a steady stream of commissions from professional chamber music ensembles. Widely respected as performer, teacher and composer, he has given master classes and clinics around the world.

Yeats was principal tubist with the Cedar Rapids Symphony for 19 years and has appeared as soloist with many professional orchestras, bands and brass ensembles on the East Coast and across the Midwest. At the UI he teaches tuba and euphonium, directs the Collegium Tubum and edits the "University of Iowa Guide to Selected Wind and Percussion Materials."

The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

CONTACT: Peter Alexander, 319-384-0072,

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