2024 American Bandmaster Showcase

The U.S. Army and Air Force Concert Bands present a two-act concert featuring special guest conductors from across the country. If you love symphonic band music, don't miss this event! FREE concert – no tickets required!

HIGH VIBRATION (2022)  /  Christopher Kyle Green (b. 1996)

COL Bruce R. Pulver, The U.S. Army Band
12th Leader and Commander

Commissioned by the Central-Carroll Symphonic Band of Carrollton, GA, “High Vibration” is a bright concert fanfare inspired by the metaphysical properties of stones and crystals, two invaluable gifts from the Earth. Every stone on our planet has its own molecular structure that is essentially perfect in its composition. High Vibration is a musical adaptation of the energy which passes through the network of molecules that science has proven intensifies energetic vibration. The imagined sound is metallic and quite literally highly vibrational. With sweeping percussive moments, flourishing woodwinds, and energetic brass fanfares throughout, the music takes us on an energetic journey of perfect structure. In his notes at the beginning of the printed score, Composer Christopher Kyle Green encourages conductors of this work to “Please allow your brass section and entire ensemble to let loose and have fun."


AURORA AWAKES (2009)  / John Mackey (b. 1953)

COL Bruce R. Pulver, The U.S. Army Band
12th Leader and Commander

Aurora – the Roman goddess of the dawn – is a mythological figure frequently associated with beauty and light. Also known as Eos (her Greek analogue), Aurora would rise each morning and stream across the sky, heralding the coming of her brother Sol, the sun. Though she is herself among the lesser deities of Roman and Greek mythologies, her cultural influence has persevered, most notably in the naming of the vibrant flashes of light that occur in Arctic and Antarctic regions – the Aurora Borealis and Aurora Australis. John Mackey’s “Aurora Awakes" is, thus, a piece about the heralding of the coming of light. Built in two substantial sections, the piece moves over the course of eleven minutes from a place of remarkable stillness to an unbridled explosion of energy – from darkness to light, placid grey to startling rainbows of color.


"THE RIFLE REGIMENT" MARCH (1886)  /  John Philip Sousa (1854 - 1932)

Dr. Thomas V. Fraschillo, guest conductor
Secretary-Treasurer and Past President
American Bandmasters Association

The Rifle Regiment March was composed by John Philip Sousa in 1886 and dedicated to the oldest active-duty infantry unit in the U.S. Army. Established in 1784 and known as ”The Old Guard,” The 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment serves as the Army's official ceremonial unit and escort to the President of The United States.


PEACE DANCER (2017)  /  Jodie Blackshaw (b. 1971)

Dr. John Southall, guest conductor

Composer Jodie Blackshaw wrote “Peace Dancer” in 2017 for the University of British Columbia Conducting Symposium consortium. The piece is based on a children’s book of the same name by Roy Henry Vickers and Robert Budd. Blackshaw describes the connection in her program notes:  “Peace Dancer” is inspired by the First Nations text of the same name by Roy Henry Vickers (Squamish Nation). In the words of the author: “The story Peace Dancer is about a song and dance that is thousands of years old originating from the time of the flood. Songs have been composed for different Chiefs up and down the Pacific northwest coast. The Chief who is chosen to do this sacred dance is recognized as a healer in each community and the songs and dances are a reminder of the great flood and how the people lost their way and their love for all things in creation. During the dance there is a time when the dancer shakes an eagle down from their headdress to remind people of the flood.” Whilst this text afforded many music making opportunities, the composer chose to focus on one moment:  “We have really lost our way, we have not taught our children love and respect”. This is achieved by dividing this short piece into ‘moments’: meditation – awakening – realization – humility. It takes you, the audience, on an emotional journey, similar to realizing you have been in the wrong; maybe you have been unkind or acted in a way that does not become you? Once you realize the consequence of your actions, remorse and the understanding that there is a need to move forward with humility and grace follows. Thus is the lesson of Peace Dancer.


SPOON RIVER (1922)  /  Percy Grainger (1882 - 1961)

Mr. Phil Alvarado, guest conductor

This American folk-dance set for concert band is based on the tune Spoon River, which Captain Charles H. Robinson heard in 1857 being played by a rustic fiddler at a country dance in Bradford, Illinois. Passed to Percy Grainger through poet Edgar Lee Masters in 1914, it is a very archaic tune in character: typically American, yet akin to certain Scottish and English dance-tune types. Grainger aims in his original setting at preserving a pioneer blend of lonesome wistfulness and sturdy persistence.


"BULLETS AND BAYONETS" MARCH (1918)  /  John Philip Sousa (1854 - 1932)

COL (Ret.) Gary F. Lamb, guest conductor 
Conductor Emeritus, The U.S. Army Band
7th Leader and Commander

Dating from World War I while Sousa was serving in the Naval Reserve, “Bullets and Bayonets” is one of Sousa’s most stirring military and patriotic marches. 
More than many of Sousa's other marches, this World War I composition has a distinctly military character. There is no record of solicitation by a specific regiment, but the march was dedicated "To the officers and men of the U.S. Infantry."


BE THOU MY VISION (2011)  /  David Gillingham (b. 1947)

Dr. Danh Pham, guest conductor

Composer David Gillingham bases this reverent and powerful work on the hymn tune “Be Thou My Vision” (also known as the old Irish ballad Slane) With its eternal message of faith and hope, it goes far beyond being an arrangement of a familiar hymn tune, as Gillingham gives moments of real drama in the shimmering tonal colors provided by the woodwinds and the glorious brass lines that break like dazzling sunlight through the clouds. In his program notes the composer states: “The work is heartfelt, expressive and hopefully inspiring. The hymn tune Slane is one of my favorites and inspired me to compose a countermelody which is likened to an old Irish ballad. Since Slane is, in fact, an old Irish ballad, the two tunes share this unique camaraderie.”


DRIVEN! (2002)  /  Kenneth Amis (b. 1970)

Mr. Robert Herrings, guest conductor

Kenneth Amis was born and raised in Bermuda. He began playing the piano at a young age and upon entering high school took up the tuba and developed an interest in performing and writing music. Inspired by the passion, drive and unwavering professionalism of New England Conservatory Wind Ensemble conductor Frank Battisti, Amis’ 2002 work “Driven!” is a compelling selection for concert band. The rhythmic drive of this piece, like its human inspiration, is relentless even through a gentle and expressive middle section.


SYMPHONY IN B-FLAT (1951)  /  Paul Hindemith (1895 - 1963)

  1. Moderately Fast, with Vigor
  2. Andante Grazioso
  3. Fugue

COL Bruce R. Pulver, The U.S. Army Band
12th Leader and Commander

Paul Hindemith immigrated to the United States from Switzerland a few months after the outbreak of World War II and was appointed to the music faculty at Yale University in 1940. In 1950, Captain Hugh Curry invited Hindemith to guest conduct the U.S. Army Band at a concert in February. Hindemith accepted the invitation but suggested that if his appearance could be pushed back, he “just might write a little something.” This “little something” turned out to be a complete symphony for concert band, which was premiered at the Departmental Auditorium in Washington D.C. on 5 April 1951 with the composer conducting. Following its premier, Hindemith’s new work gained instant recognition as a masterpiece of its genre and has been regarded as a landmark work ever since.

The United States Army Band “Pershing’s Own”

COL Bruce R. Pulver, 12th Leader and Commander
CPT Lee Lamb, Concert Band Officer-in-charge

The U.S. Army Concert Band

MSG Megan Lomonof    Oak Lawn, IL
SFC Elizabeth Mcginness    Hartville, OH
SFC Carol Joe Inglis    Los Angeles, CA
SSG Jenna Taylor    Jupiter, FL

SFC Janice Kim    Seoul, South Korea
SSG Audrey Yu    East Amherst, NY

MSG Meredeth Rouse    Boston, MA

MSG Kevin Simpson    Upland, CA
MSG Jennifer Trujillo    Williamsville, NY
MSG Leigh LaFosse    Kingwood, TX
MSG Aaron Scott    Pittsburgh, PA
MSG Timothy Sutfin    Crystal Lake, IL
SSG Rucha Trivedi    Madison, WI
SSG Charles Sonoda    Torrance, CA
SSG Kenji Bellavigna    Corte Madera, CA
SSG John Milakovich    Columbia, SC
SSG Samantha Frenduto    Durham, NC

MSG Martin Gold    Sarasota, FL
SSG Davis Hampton    Bellingham, WA

SGM Dean Woods    Dalton, GA
SFC Patricia Morgan    Glenn Dale, MD
SSG Thomas Reynolds    Farmington Hills, MI

SGM Steve Ticknor    Topeka, KS
MSG Matthew Carmichael    Bowling Green, KY
MSG Michelle Acton    Plano, TX
SFC Matthew Evans    Kokomo, IN

SGM Troy Mckay    Richmond, MO
MSG Erik J. Ramos    Saint John, IN
SFC Kelley Corbett    Fincastle, VA
SFC Lorenzo Trujillo    Lakewood, CO
SFC Drew Fremder    Cedarburg, WI
SSG Ryan Brewer    North Richland Hills, TX

SGM Robert Craven    Manchester, NH
MSG Shawn Hagen    Paragould, AR
SFC Patrick Furlo    Clarkston, MI
SSG Jacob Wiggins    Baton Rouge, LA

MSG Samuel Woodhead    Northport, ME
SFC Adam McColley    Tampa, FL
SSG Omar DeJesus    Palm Bay, FL

SSG Kyle Gordon    Harlan, IA

MSG Adam Lessard    Athens, GA
SFC Toby Furr    Dallas, TX

SGM Dave Brown    Nashville, TN
MSG Thomas Bratten    Palm Beach Gardens, FL
SFC David Kirven    Paris, TX

MSG Eric Seay    Oak Ridge, TN

SFC Kristopher Keeton    Russellville, KY
SFC Jacob Harpster    Topeka, KS
SSG Oni Lara    Edinburg, TX
SSG Timothy Perry    Lakeland, FL
SSG Peter Soroka    Richmond, VA

SSG Jonathan Milke    Wamego, KS

SFC Nadia Pessoa    Miami, FL

Meet the Guest Conductors