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University of Iowa News Release


Nov 27, 2006

UI Collegium Tubum Returns To Old Capitol Steps Dec. 8

The University of Iowa Collegium Tubum - also known as the UI Tuba-Euphonium Ensemble - will return to the original home of its popular annual outdoor performance of holiday music at 12:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 8, on the front steps of the Old Capitol on the UI Pentacrest.

During the recent renovation of the Old Capitol, completed last spring, the tubas assembled on the steps of Macbride Hall for the annual concert.

John Manning, tuba professor at the UI School of Music and director of the group, commented: "For the first since 2001, Holiday Tubas will return to the steps of the Old Capitol. Playing on the Old Capitol steps is such a long-held tradition that last May, the Collegium Tubum was invited to play at the rededication ceremony. A special piece entitled 'Old Capitol Fanfare' was composed by tuba student Karl Zelle and premiered on May 6, 2006.

"Now we will return to the Old Capitol steps to play holiday favorites such as 'You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch', 'Jingle Bell Rock' and 'Frosty the Snowman.' Please come and bring the kids!"

Since it is outside, the concert will naturally be free, and Manning promises that, as always, it will take place regardless of weather. In Iowa, that is of course a significant promise: The concert has often been played amid snow flurries, and in some past years frigid temperatures have forced the group to perform in tag-team fashion, with members periodically retreating indoors to un-freeze their valves.

To heighten the festive spirit of the event, ensemble members customarily decorate their instruments, and some wear costumes of their own.

Manning is a founding member of the award-winning Yamaha performing ensemble, the Atlantic Brass Quintet, with whom he has toured across the United States and around the world, including performances at the White House, Tanglewood, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival and June in Buffalo. An active freelance musician, he has performed with the Boston Symphony, the Empire Brass and the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra. He joined the UI faculty in 2004. More information:

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

For information on UI arts events, visit on the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at To receive UI arts news by e-mail, go to, click the link "Join or leave the list (or change settings)" and follow the instructions.

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

MEDIA CONTACT: Peter Alexander, 319-384-0072; cell: 319-541-2846;

PHOTOS are available at