Ensemble performs off campus at conference


Photo by Jesse Johnson

The Concert Band and Chamber Winds ensemble performs at the Baltimore Convention Center on Feb. 11.

Jesse Johnson , Editor-In-Chief

AACC’s Concert Band and Chamber Winds ensemble performed at the Baltimore Convention Center on Feb. 11.

The Concert Band and Chamber Winds ensemble performed with other educational music programs throughout Maryland as part of the three-day Maryland Music Educators Association Annual In-Service Conference.

The concert band performed five pieces, including a rendition of “Casey At The Bat,” featuring a narration by David Kauffman, coordinator of music for Anne Arundel County Public Schools.

AACC’s Concert Band submitted an audition tape at the beginning of the fall semester and was accepted almost immediately.

The performance was the first time the band has performed at the conference, and its first large performance off campus, according to Jordan Wood, a financial economics major and clarinet player in the Concert Band.

“With the largest amount of musicians that we have had in years, I feel [the concert] was terrific,” Wood said. “Everything that we had practiced over the semester came together perfectly.”

The ensembles had practiced over the winter break on a voluntary basis for the conference.

The Concert Band and Chamber Winds ensemble are made up of a combined 86 members, who come together as a diverse group of students, faculty, and other musicians, according to conductor and adjunct AACC professor Paul Dembowski.

“For me, within [the band], there are so many crossing paths of people that I know from different places in their life,” Dembowski said. “And now, they’re all sitting there, and we’re making music.”

According to Dembowski, there are four full-time faculty members in the music department; the rest of the department is adjunct.

Dembowski also serves as the chair of the performing and visual arts music magnet program at Broadneck High School.

Dembowski’s wife, Lynda, is a clarinet player in the concert band, and teaches clarinet as an adjunct professor at AACC.

Lynda Dembowski performed in the concert as a soloist for the piece, “Black Dog,” and said she finds pressure to be a “good thing” when performing.

“If you’re feeling nervous, you work that energy into your playing,” Dembowski said. “You try to, as I call it, gather your chi.”

Dembowski is also a member of the United States Naval Academy Concert Band.

The ensembles will host a spring concert on May 13 in the Pascal Center for Performing Arts.