May 25—A talented ensemble of musicians will be making an entertaining, and educational, two-night stop this week in Joplin.
Boston Brass is set to perform live Thursday at an unnamed outdoor park in Joplin, the next-to-last performance of Pro Musica's 2020-21 season. The concert's location is being kept under wraps for safety reasons, as COVID-19 still poses a public health threat; when registering for a free ticket to view the concert, the location will be given out, along with directions.
"We are thrilled to welcome Boston Brass to Joplin and are looking forward to hearing their music in a lovely, outdoor setting," said Emlyn Johnson, Pro Musica's new executive director. "Boston Brass is not only an incredible ensemble, but the quintet is also friendly, charismatic and genuinely invested in connecting with their audiences. Their program will mix together beautiful melodies, lively dance numbers, jazz tunes, and more — often arranged by members of the ensemble itself."
Jeff Conner and Jose Sibaja both play the trumpet, while William Russel mans the tuba, Domingo Paliuca handles the trombone and Chris Castellanos helms the french horn. They've been playing these same instruments as a group for 31 years, mixing and matching classical arrangements with jazz and just a tad bit of funk. The brass quintet is capable of "creating so many different beautiful colors and timbres, and we associate these instruments and sounds with a huge variety of different styles of music from around the world," Johnson said.
"The performers in Boston Brass are some of the best brass players out there, and we are excited to share their music with our Joplin audience," she said.
The five musicians will also be presenting a master class and lecture at Missouri Southern State University, Johnson said. The class, which will include a performance with several Southern music department students, will take place at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday; it is open to the public. At 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Conner will lead a lecture concerning music entrepreneurship, which is also open to the public. Both events will take place inside Corley Auditorium on the Southern campus.
Based on the feedback the organization received from its outdoor Invoke Quartet concert in April, Joplin area residents are absolutely giddy that live musical concerts are back on the menu, Johnson said.
"Our audiences are so happy to hear live music again ... music naturally brings people together, and we are all eager to gather again to experience these special performances together as a community," she said.
Reservations can be made by going online at https://promusicajoplin.org/bostonbrass. And because this is an outdoor event, patrons will be asked to bring their own lawn chairs or blankets.
"There's something extra special about presenting beautiful music outdoors," Johnson said. "Without the formality of the conventional concert hall, that fourth wall breaks down a little bit, and there are more opportunities for real engagement between performers and audiences. This event will be a fun, family-friendly concert, and it's a great opportunity to hear some absolutely world class performers in a relaxed environment.
Kevin McClintock is features editor for The Joplin Globe.