Weighty composers for concert band: Grieg — and top OSU arranger

Lanzel Harris conducts the Naples Concert Band before a packed Cambier Park in 2012.

Lanzel Harris conducts the Naples Concert Band before a packed Cambier Park in 2012.

Last season, the Naples Concert Band celebrated 40 years. This year's sophisticated season plans to remind us how they got that far.

Fans can still plan to hear its signature marches. But among the programs there's a Grieg piano concerto movement, Richard Rodgers' sultry "Slaughter on Tenth Avenue" and a flurry of arrangements by Ohio State University marching band arranger James Swearingen — with Swearingen conducting.

As it turns out, Swearingen taught music at Michigan State University years ago with Jym Moore, who is percussion section leader for the Naples Concert Band. Swearingen (pronounced SWARE-in-jen), considered a composer and arranger laureate of marching band music, couldn't resist the offer to conduct some of his own works, said Harris Lanzel, music director.

He will have some trained ears listening: "We've had a number of local marching band directors tell us, I'm definitely going to be at this one,'" he said.

"The Grieg piano concerto that John Davis is playing Jan. 20 is really going to be an eye-opener, too," he said. "John is local and he is an outstanding pianist."

The Grieg is arranged for band — no strings — and piano.

But then, Lanzel said, he tries to program something exciting into every concert. Every season the band tackles works that both challenge them and entertain the public.

All concerts are at 2 p.m. in the bandshell in Cambier Park, 755 Eighth Ave. S., Naples.

Admission is free, but donations help defray costs and contribute to the music scholarships the band awards to young musicians. For more information, visit www.naplesconcertband.org or call 239-263-9521.

NAPLES CONCERT BAND 2013 SEASON

Pianist John Davis and Tony Pulera, tenor: Sunday, Jan. 20. Davis is music director at two Naples churches: Mayflower Congregational United Church of Christ and United Church of Christ at Lighthouse.

Tony Pulera

Tony Pulera

He received his masters in piano performance at Ball State University in Muncie, Ind. Davis also performs on his harp in the Naples-based For the Love of Harps Ensemble, and is a 20-year veteran music teacher in Collier County, currently at Pelican Marsh.

Pulera has performed in Las Vegas; New York; Chicago; Monterey, Calif.; and a worldwide USO show tour, opening for Steve Martin and Jay Leno. He is the professional soloist at the Presbyterian Church of Bonita Springs, a member of the Music Makers Show Band and the Naples Jazz Orchestra.

Among the program selections are arrangements of:

■ Grieg Piano Concerto in A minor, First Movement

■ "Barry Manilow on Tour" medley

■ Richard Rodgers' "Slaughter on Tenth Avenue"

James Swearingen: Sunday, Feb. 10. Swearingen is professor of music, division head of music education and one of several resident composers at Capital University in Columbus, Ohio. He also serves as a staff arranger for the internationally known Ohio State University Marching Band. With more than 550 published works, Swearingen is a recipient of several ASCAP awards for published compositions. The American School Band Directors Association, Inc., presented him with its highest honor, the A. Austin Harding Award.

Among the program works are arrangements of:

■ "Lest We Forget," "Exordium" and "Can't Help Falling in Love," all arranged by Swearingen

■ Overture to "Candide" by Leonard Bernstein

■ "Kodumaa" March, by R. Kull

Mary Bowden

Mary Bowden

David Dash

Photo by Nathan Hill

David Dash

David Dash and Mary Bowden: March 3. Dash is the assistant principal trumpet of the Naples Philharmonic and a member of the Santa Fe Opera Orchestra. He gives several annual recitals with the Naples Philharmonic Brass Quintet and performs frequently in a duo with his fiancee, trumpeter Mary Bowden. Dash was previously a member of "The President's Own" United States Marine Band and performed frequently with the Baltimore Symphony. He received his masters from the Manhattan School of Music.

Bowden is a member of the Richmond Symphony and founder of the Chrysalis Chamber Players in Florida. She has performed as principal trumpet with the Auckland (New Zealand) Philharmonic and with the Lucerne (Switzerland) Festival Academy under the baton of Pierre Boulez; she can be heard as principal trumpet on Mahler's 6th Symphony on the academy's CD.

In May 2006, Bowden was acting principal trumpet of the Daejeon Philharmonic in Korea. She recently won first prize at the International Women's Brass Conference Trumpet Competition. She studied at the Curtis Institute of Music and at the Yale School of Music.

Among the program works are arrangements of:

■ "Carmen" Fantasia for Two Solo Trumpets and Wind Ensemble

■ "I Dreamed A Dream," from "Les Miserables"

■ Selections from "Chicago," with Amy Bright and Craig Greusel, vocalists

Craig Greusel: March 24. Greusel is a 26-year music specialist for Collier County Public Schools and director of music at Marco Lutheran Church. He has been singing as a soloist with the Naples Concert Band since 1989. He most recently appeared in his own Sinatra show, "Blue Eyes and The Blues," at the Marco Lutheran Church in 2011.

Craig Greusel

Craig Greusel

Among the program works are arrangements of:

■ "La Gazza Ladra" Overture by Giacomo Rossini

■ "High and Mighty" March by Fred Jewell

■ Highlights from "Camelot"

Lighter fare from the band: April 14. Among program works are:

■ Selections from the musicals "Grease" and "Cats"

■ "Rhapsody for Euphonium," featuring Robert Thurston, by Jim Curnow

■ Music from the movie "How to Train Your Dragon"

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