Glenn’s Trumpet Notes

News & Tips for Trumpet & Cornet Students

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Posts Tagged ‘trumpet’

My Trumpet Student Shines at the Mid-Winter Orchestra Concert, Garfield High School, Seattle

Posted by glennled on January 18, 2019

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Concert Orchestra, Bryan Kolk, Conductor, Garfield High School, Seattle, 20 December 2018

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Aidan Grambihler, Principal Trumpet, Concert Orchestra, Garfield High School, 2018-19

 

On 20 Dec 2018, all the orchestras at Garfield High School gathered with the choirs and bands to present their Mid-Winter Concert to a packed audience in Quincy Jones Performing Arts Center in Seattle. The principal trumpet in the Concert Orchestra is my student. He’s been taking lessons with me almost three years, starting in his last year at Washington Middle School (see my blog posts of 13 April and 25 July 2016). For several years, it’s been his ambition to play in the GHS orchestras. He’s made it, and I’m proud of him!

Here is a photo gallery of the GHS Concert Orchestra, followed by some others on the program. Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

 

GHS Concert Orchestra

 

Other Orchestras, Band, Choir, Soloist, and Ensembles

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“Things Remembered” Trumpet Show for Aegis of Lynnwood Retirement Community

Posted by glennled on December 29, 2018

Happy Hour 1 (6) - by Brenda, 12-14-'18

For my final trumpet show in 2018, I performed “Things Remembered” at the Aegis of Lynnwood Retirement Community on 14 December for an audience of about 25. In the past year, I’ve presented either this 1-hour show or another, “Showtune Favorites,” at 8 different retirement communities in Lynnwood, Bothell, Redmond, and Mercer Island. I want to do more in 2019—it’s wholesome and fun! And I have prepared a third, entirely new show, “In Retrospect,” for return appearances at retirement communities where I’ve already performed.

“Things Remembered” is my Christmas show. It consists of a dozen Christmas songs, mixed with a dozen hit songs from musicals and movies that are well-known favorites among the residents of all retirement communities—songs like “Over the Rainbow” from The Wizard of Oz,” (1939), sung by Judy Garland, and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” from Meet Me in St. Louis (1944), also sung by Judy Garland. The residents sing-along and chuckle at a few of my jokes, too.

I play one cornet and two trumpets, sometimes with a Harmon mute, and use four mouthpieces. One mouthpiece, the Wick 4, makes the cornet sound like a flugelhorn, so in effect, I play four horns during the show.

Aegis of Lynnwood

Aegis operates 31 facilities in Washington (16), California (14), and Nevada (1), according to the website, http://www.aegisliving.com. In Washington, all 16 retirement communities are in the Greater Seattle area. Six more new ones are planned to open through 2021. Aegis Living ranks in the coveted list of Top 50 Best Places to Work in America in 2017, amid 600,000 companies on the employee review site, http://www.Glassdoor.com.

At Aegis of Lynnwood, where I presented my trumpet show, residents are provided the following services: memory care, assisted living, and short-term care. Check them out at  https://www.aegisliving.com/aegis-living-of-lynnwood/. And more than that, see their 25-photo gallery: https://www.aegisliving.com/aegis-living-of-lynnwood/gallery. Three different floor plans (650 s.f.) are available. For assisted living, there are both 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom floor plans. The other plan, named “Life’s Neighborhood,” also has two bedrooms. Please find these plans at https://www.aegisliving.com/aegis-living-of-lynnwood/accommodations/.

Photos are courtesy of Aegis of Lynnwood. Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

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My 44th Trumpet Student Came and Went

Posted by glennled on December 25, 2018

dc8Mgnjgi[1]My first weekly trumpet lesson with my 44th trumpet student was on 4 December. Two weeks later, he dropped. But no worries—all is not lost. He’s also taking piano lessons (and has for the past two years), but taking lessons on both instruments is just more than he and his family want to handle at his young age (10). Besides, his sister is taking piano and guitar, too, so there’s a lot of music being played in their home.

He’s a 4th grader at Wedgewood Elementary School in Seattle. At our first lesson, I asked him what attracted him to trumpet. “It’s size and weight,” he answered. He walks to and from school daily, and he simply did not want to carry something like a cello. When we started, he already had Bruce Pearson’s Standard of Excellence, Book 1, Trumpet, so we began with that, learning how to make notes on a brass instrument. During our last lesson, I gave him the music for the first four bars of “Happy Birthday,” which he managed quite well.

We parted amicably, and I encouraged him and his mother, saying that he can still become a good trumpet player if he wants to take band in the 5th grade. In my experience, it’s very rare that a fourth-grade trumpeter will stay with private lessons. They burn out. They simply need to grow and develop just one more year, and then most of them will make it. There are many good reasons why almost all elementary schools start band classes in the fifth grade. The kids are bigger and stronger, their hands have grown, and they have more maturity, discipline, and motivation. My 44th student pleasantly accepted this, and indeed, he may join band class next year. He certainly has had a good head start. Good luck, warm regards, so long for now, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

 

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“Things Remembered”—My 1-Hour Trumpet Show on the First Day of Advent at Overlake Terrace Retirement Community in Redmond

Posted by glennled on December 23, 2018

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My Christmas trumpet show is called “Things Remembered” because, by using some old favorite songs, I walk the audience through the common pattern of life that we all share—living single, falling in love, getting married, raising a family, celebrating Christmas year after year, laughing at jokes, overcoming adversity, facing retirement, and celebrating the fantastic blessings of life in America during our wonderful time in human history. On 1 December, the first day of Advent this year, I performed this show for an audience of 25-30 residents and staff at Overlake Terrace Retirement Community in Redmond.2017-assisted-living-award-sm

20181201_132322The show consists of 24 songs, half from musicals and movies and half about Christmas. All are favorites of the age group living today in retirement communities. They sing along as I play. And as they listen to me play and talk, they recall where they were and what was happening when they first heard and learned those songs—“Things Remembered.”

2018-assisted-living-awardFor variety and fun, as appropriate for each song, I play three instruments (two trumpets and one cornet) and use four mouthpieces and one mute. One mouthpiece makes my Super Olds cornet sound like a flugelhorn, so in effect, it’s like playing four different instruments for them.

Overlake Terrace provides independent, assisted living, memory care, and respite services. For more information, here is the link to the website:  https://www.stellarliving.com/overlake-terrace/. And for a tour of the interior of the facilities, please see the photo gallery here: https://www.stellarliving.com/overlake-terrace/photo-tour/. The 14 photos show the main lobby entrance, café, and dining room; model bedroom and living room; family rooms, library, exercise room, activity room, and movie theater.

Overlake Terrace is part of Stellar Senior Living, based in Salt Lake City, Utah. The group consists of 8 retirement communities, including two in Washington (Redmond and Kent), two in Utah, two in Idaho, and one each in Colorado and Arizona.

The photos below are courtesy of Overlake Terrace. Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

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Trumpet Show at Fairwinds Brighton Court Retirement Community in Lynnwood

Posted by glennled on September 29, 2018

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Residents of Fairwinds Brighton Court in Lynnwood applaud Trumpet Show, “Showtune Favorites,” by Glenn Ledbetter

 

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Ruth M. MacDonald celebrates her 84th birthday on New Year’s Day, 2010

Last year, when I first thought of performing a trumpet show at numerous retirement homes, Fairwinds Brighton Court (FBC) was my initial target venue. That’s because my dear mother-in-law, Ruth M. MacDonald, lived there in Room 344 for three years, 2010-2012. She enjoyed the various shows on Sunday afternoons, and we relatives enjoyed attending with her often. So, on 23 September, I dedicated my performance and paid tribute to her—a bright spirit with a warm heart full of love, kindness, and good humor, may she rest in peace. My wife, daughter, and granddaughter attended and honored her with me.

My one-hour trumpet show, “Showtune Favorites,” comprised 24 songs from musicals and movies that are quite familiar to the audience of about 25-30. In fact, they sang along with many of the songs, including “Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin'” from Oklahoma!, “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” from “The Wizard of Oz, ” and “I Could Have Danced All Night” from My Fair Lady.” 

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Juna Davies, accompanist to Glenn Ledbetter on trumpet, playing “You’re A Grand Old Flag”

For the finale, I was accompanied by pianist Juna Davies, a FBC resident and former friend of Ruth’s.  We distributed a handout of the lyrics, and the audience sang as we played “You’re a Grand Old Flag.” It was written by George M. Cohan in 1906, for the musical, George Washington, Jr. It is said to be the first song from a musical to sell more than one million copies of sheet music. Today, most of us know it from James Cagney’s performance in the 1942 movie, Yankee Doodle Dandy. 

During the show, I used two trumpets and one cornet, two mutes, and four mouthpieces.

Fairwinds Brighton Court

Located at 6520 196th St. SW, Lynnwood, WA 98036, a couple of blocks west of Highway 99,  FBC was built in 1989. It is quite lovely and offers both independent and assisted living apartments for seniors. They come in three types: studio, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom, all with fully equipped kitchens, walk-in closets, individually controlled heating, and built-in emergency communication systems. The studios are 377 sq. ft., one-bedrooms are 547 sq. ft., and two-bedrooms are 788 sq. ft. The floor plans and 34 beautiful photos of the exterior and interiors are shown on the website, https://www.leisurecare.com/our-communities/fairwinds-brighton-court.

Some of the many apartment features and facility amenities are listed here:

  • Wall-to-wall carpeting
  • Showers and safety bars in every bathroom
  • Full-service dining, seasonal menus, healthy choices
  • Intimate dining room for private parties
  • Bistro
  • Room service for in-room dining
  • Accepts indoor cats and small dogs
  • Reserved parking
  • Full-service salon
  • Health and wellness center
  • Complimentary laundry facilities
  • Weekly housekeeping and linen service
  • Concierge services
  • Regularly scheduled shuttle service
  • Activity rooms
  • Card, bingo, bridge & poker rooms
  • Interior courtyard
  • Luxurious entertainment lounge with piano and fireplace
  • Full calendar of fun and engaging programs, events and activities

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

Photos of the trumpet show are by Ruth’s granddaughter, Janelle Squires.

 

Photos Courtesy of Fairwinds Brighton Court

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Photo Gallery of Trumpeters and Buglers at 2018 Royal Military Tattoo, Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted by glennled on September 6, 2018

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On opening night, 3 August, my wife and I attended the 2018 Royal Military Tattoo at Edinburgh Castle in Edinburgh, Scotland, U.K. It’s a great show, and this is the third year we have attended (2014, 2017, 2018). This year, I shot more than 300 photos. By far the most prevalent musical instrument was the bagpipes, but there were lots of trumpeters and buglers, also, in the many bands. I got a few photos of some of them, and here are the better ones. Wouldn’t it be a thrill to play your trumpet or bugle at the Tattoo?!

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

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Trumpet Show at Vineyard Park at Bothell Landing

Posted by glennled on July 16, 2018

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Thanks to the Activities Director, Katie Matthews, I had the privilege on 5 July of presenting my one-hour trumpet show, “Showtune Favorites: Hit Songs from Musicals and Movies,” to about 30 residents of the lovely retirement community, Vineyard Park at Bothell Landing (VPBL). Judging by the audience response during the performance and the many cordial compliments I received afterwards, it was a success!

According to its website, VPBL offers senior living services for independent and assisted living in 87 private studio, one bedroom, and two bedroom apartment suites, ranging in layout and size up to 949 square feet, complete with kitchenettes and private baths. These services and amenities are included:

  • High speed internet connection
  • Cable TV
  • Weekly housekeeping and daily trash removal
  • Weekly personal laundry and linens
  • Utilities

It was voted Best of Northshore for 2014. The renowned, dynamic Northshore Senior Center is located a short walk away. With more than 10,000 members, this center is one of the largest on the West Coast. VPBL residents receive a complimentary membership to the Northshore Senior Center, with it large curriculum of activities and functions. Please see http://www.northshoreseniorcenter.org/.

VPBL is part of Care Partners Management Group, LLC (see http://www.carepartnersliving.com/ and http://www.carepartnersliving.com/vineyard-park-bothell-retirement-community/senior-living/). Photo is courtesy of VPBL.

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My 43rd Trumpet Student—5th Grader at Northwood Elementary School, Mercer Island

Posted by glennled on July 14, 2018

My newest trumpet student—No. 43—will enter fifth grade this fall at Northwood Elementary School on Mercer Island, where I lived for 30 years before moving to Edmonds. He plans to join the beginning band, and to get a jump start, we began lessons on 16 June. I now have two M.I. students (please see my blog posts of 18 November 2017 and 21 May 2018). dc8Mgnjgi[1]

How and why did he choose trumpet? He heard his cousin play trumpet, and he liked the sound of it. (That cousin has since moved from M.I. to California.) It was that simple and easy. His two older brothers play piano, and he also started piano lessons earlier this year.

What’s the M.I. 5th grade band program like? According to the Northwood website, Carol Krell is the Director, and the band is supported by the Mercer Island Schools Band Boosters (please see http://www.mercerislandschools.org/site/Default.aspx?PageID=5624 and http://www.misbb.wordpress.com). The first school band lesson will be on the evening of 12 September. Band classes begin on 17 September, meeting twice per week from 8:15 – 9 a.m. Each student has one class with a specialist on their instrument, and one full band class. The instruction book will be Essential Elements 2000, Book 1.

Where is my student eventually headed? To the Mercer Island High School Band! And then he’ll get to do some very cool things like this: on New Year’s Day 2019, the MIHS Band will march in the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, CA prior to the Rose Bowl Football Game. I did that as a member of the Varsity Marching Band playing cornet, University of Washington, 1 January 1961, when the UW Huskies beat the top-ranked University of Minnesota Golden Gophers, 17-7. May my newest trumpet student have as much fun in band as I did!

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9th Annual Trumpet Recital in My Edmonds Home

Posted by glennled on July 9, 2018

How can you stretch out one annual recital and make it last for three weeks? Easy—you split it into two segments. That’s what I had to do this year—the first group of trumpet students came to our home in Edmonds on 26 May and the second group came three weeks later on 16 June. It’s the first time in my 9 annual home recitals that I’ve had to do it. Every other time, we’ve had a morning session and an afternoon session on the same day. This year, some of my students had some conflicting commitments that were unchangeable, so we had to adjust. “All’s well that ends well.”

Even so, we had to make one other adjustment: one student couldn’t make it—he’s 77 years old and had just had hip replacement surgery. He’s a veteran and captain of the Honor Guard of VFW Post 3063 in Ballard. He’s learning to sound bugle calls (see my blog post of 17 November 2017) and was scheduled to play “Assembly” and “Taps.” So I was his surrogate and did it for him. I played fine, and so did all the students in both the May and June sessions. Good job, everyone! “Life goes on.”

This year’s recital was indeed unusual. But every recital is unique. In the May session, one student has been taking lessons with me less than one month; another, 3 years and 9 months; and another, 2 years and three months. In the June session, one student has been taking lessons with me 7 months and the other, three months. To read about and see photos of previous recitals, simply click on the link, “Recitals,” in the footnote below this post.

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

26 May Session

 

16 June Session

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Milestone—My First Tutored Student’s Last Concert at Garfield High School

Posted by glennled on June 26, 2018

 

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Benjamin Laverde, Principal Tubist, Senior, Garfield Symphony Orchestra, 2018, conducted by Kimberly Roy

 

“Become Your Best!” is the motto I printed on my business card in 2009 when I began private tutoring of trumpet and cornet students. In the nine years I’ve been doing this, the most accomplished musician to whom I ever gave private lessons just graduated from Garfield High School and will attend Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts this fall. He is Benjamin Laverde, tubist.

Benjamin Laverde (R), cornetist, 4th grader, plays in his first public school concert, Lowell Elementary School, Seattle

Ben was my very first student. I taught him to play his cornet when he was a 4th and 5th grader at Lowell Elementary School on Capitol Hill in Seattle. He made All-City Honors Elementary Band in 2011 as a 5th grader (see my blog post of 10 April 2011). Our lessons were fun. Often, for example, when I would arrive at his home in Crown Hill, we would play “Hide and Seek.” I’d walk in the front door and ask his mom, “Where’s Ben?” He would be lying flat, face down, arms tight against his sides, rigid, on the living room couch. She’d say, “I don’t know. Perhaps he’s downstairs.” I’d say, “I’ll just wait here on the couch while you go find him.” At the last instant as I sat down, he would quickly squirm out of the way, and I would say, “Oh, here he is! I found him.” And we would all laugh and get down to business. He was always smart, talented, curious, explorative, and energetic.

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Benjamin Laverde, Senior, Garfield High School, Seattle

From the very beginning, he told me that he ultimately wanted to play tuba. His chance to do so came when he was preparing to enter Hamilton International Middle School (HMIS) in Wallingford as a 6th grader. At a music orientation session in the spring while he was still a 5th grader, he told the HMIS band director, Daniel Rowe, that he wanted to play tuba, so Mr. Rowe gave him a smaller-size tuba to practice that summer. Alas, after two years (2009-2011), I lost my first “trumpet” student. (But he still owns his cornet.)

Ben Tackles the Tuba

Meanwhile, I had picked up Trumpet Student No. 11  who lives in Magnolia and was attending Lawton Elementary School (see my blog post of 14 November 2010). Eventually, he also entered HMIS, and when I attended some of his band concerts, there also was Ben on tuba in the more advanced band. At one such concert in 2014, I learned from his parents that, as an 8th grader in 2013, Ben had made the beginning orchestra of the Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra (SYSO) and that Ben would be attending Garfield High School.

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Ben Laverde, Principal Tubist, Garfield Symphony Orchestra, 13 June 2018

Year by year, Ben progressed through SYSO’s system of the four full orchestras which include brass players: Symphonette (Beginning), Debut (Intermediate), Junior (Advanced Intermediate), and finally, while a senior at Garfield, the Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra (Flagship) where he was principal tubist. According to the SYSO website (www.syso.org), “The orchestra performs three regular season concerts in Benaroya Hall, home of the Seattle Symphony, and regularly partners with the Pacific Northwest Ballet, the Seattle Opera, regional Broadway musical theater organizations, local choruses, and internationally acclaimed guest artists and conductors.” SYSO was founded in 1942, during World War II. Ben performed in yearly side-by-side concerts with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra for four years (2015-2018).

In 2016, Ben made All-State Concert Band, sponsored by the Washington Music Educators Association. He has studied with the following tuba tutors:

  • 2012-13—Ryan Schultz, current principal tubist of the Pacific Northwest Ballet
  • 2014-15—Chris Olka, former principal tubist of the Seattle Symphony
  • 2016-17—Jon Hill, former Artist in Residence, University of Washington
  • 2018—John DiCesare, current principal tubist Seattle Symphony

Recently, when I asked Ben what had always attracted him to tuba, he said that originally, it was because he liked the Sousaphones which he saw in a marching band. They looked cool, and he liked the sound. Ironically, he’s never played in a marching band. It doesn’t bother him that he almost never gets to play melodies and solos. In fact, for him, playing bass is more fun and less stressful.

Among his most memorable highlights while at Garfield was a trip to New York City in March 2017, when the orchestra performed at Elizabeth High School in New Jersey. Another was performing in May 2018, with the famous Seattle rapper, Macklemore, at the Seattle Symphony’s “Youth. Equity. Access” concert hosted by Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks’ quarterback. A third was when he performed in June 2015, at the benefit, “Canoche, a Night with Robinson Cano & Friends.” Cano is the Seattle Mariners’ All-Star second baseman, and at the dinner were some of Cano’s friends from both the Mariners and New York Yankees, the Seattle Seahawks, and rapper mogul and agent, Jay-Z.

Ben’s Last Garfield Orchestra Concert

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Aadi Lahiri, principal trumpeter, Garfield Symphony Orchestra, played the solos in Handel’s “Music for the Royal Fireworks,” 13 June 2018

On 13 June 2018, as Principal Tubist of the 82-member Garfield Symphony Orchestra conducted by Kimberly Roy, Ben performed in his last school concert—the Graduation Concert. I made it a point to attend and mark this milestone by seeing and hearing my most accomplished former student one final time. I met him, his parents, William and Kara, and his grandparents there. The orchestra, which includes five trumpeters, performed the following challenging pieces splendidly:

  • “Music for the Royal Fireworks” by George Frideric Handel, featuring Aadi Lahiri, trumpeter
  • “Cello Concerto, op. 85” by Edward Elgar, featuring Jonathan Lin, cellist
  • “Concerto in C, op.37” by Erich Wolfgang Korngold, featuring Zofia Sabee, cellist
  • “Symphonic Dances” from West Side Story by Leonard Bernstein

Aadi Lahiri, trumpeter, will be attending St. John’s College in the fall, majoring in philosophy and math with a minor in music. St. John’s is one college with two campuses, one in Annapolis, Maryland and one in Santa Fe, New Mexico, both historic state capitals.

Ben’s Future: Clark University

Ben will attend Clark University on an academic scholarship. He says he’s undecided about a degree major, but it seems unlikely to be music. However, his parents say they would not be surprised if Ben finds some way to continue to playing tuba while at Clark.

A liberal-arts based, private non-profit, research university, Clark was founded in 1887. According to its website, it has a student/faculty ratio of 10:1. The average undergraduate class size is 21. The total enrollment of degree-seeking students in 2017 was about 3100. The average high school GPA of its first-year undergraduates (day college) is 3.63. The most popular declared majors (5-year average, including double-majors) are Psychology (17%); and Biology, Economics, Political Science, and Business Management (7% each). Ben is very impressed with Clark’s geography degree program. The Graduate School of Geography at Clark has granted more Ph.D degrees in that field than any other program in the USA. As of May 2017, Clark had about 550 endowment funds with a combined market value of ~$411 million. The percentage of undergraduates who receive some kind of financial aid is 93%. Please see http://www.clarku.edu.

Worchester is the second most populous city (~185,000) in New England, after Boston, which is about 40 miles east.

“Become Your Best!”—has Ben been done it? For now, yes indeed, but forever, no. His adult life is just beginning, and we can all continuously get better until we pass. I’m very proud of him. Viva Ben! Viva La Musique!

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

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