SOTA ensembles impress

Geneseo's Wind Ensemble and Thursday and Monday Night Jazz Ensembles treated audiences to a serenade Friday in Wadsworth Auditorium, a musical adieu to the spring semester.

The concert, featuring a smorgasbord of sounds both modern and classical, was sung out with flair. Though a group may only be as good as the sum of its parts, each portion of the show was an impressive display of individual talents. The Jazz ensembles boasted tremendous saxophone, piano, drum and trumpet solos and the Wind Ensemble featured expert conducting by senior Jesse Kinne and freshman Louis Lohraseb. Of course, the wonderful ensemble work for which these groups are known was at the root of the recital.

Is there anything that better demonstrates the importance of teamwork and talent than the circus? The Wind Ensemble's opening rendition of Karl L. King's "Barnum and Bailey's Favorite" set the precedent for the greatest show on Earth as the auditorium reverberated with deeply layered melodies and intricacies.

Three solid pieces later the festivity and lightness dissipated in the wake of John Barnes Chance's "Incantation and Dance." Dark and rich, the piece was a phenomenal closer for the Ensemble.

The Thursday Night Jazz Ensemble turned audiences to the nightclub with a trio of smooth and refreshing numbers. Jeff Lorber's "City" and H.J. Lengsfelder's "Perdido" were dance-worthy, fast-paced fun and executed delightfully per the Ensemble's specialty. It was the tortoise that beat the hare in this concert, however, when Thursday Night slowed it down with "Li'l Darlin'" by Neal Hefti. A jazz classic piece, the work conveyed even sounds and ambiance: a scintillating end to the run.

But Thursday wasn't the only day of the week to stand out, as the Monday Night Jazz Ensemble proved when it took the stage to close out the show. Armed with lungs strong enough to blow down a city block, Monday Night's sound blasted through every crack of the auditorium, shifting from lovely in "After the Morning" by John Hicks to heavy in Freddie Hubbard's "Red Clay." The set closed with L. Willis' "Isabel the Liberator," a true showstopper. Every piece was a display of precision and power.