World-renowned trumpeters from two sides of the globe will unite on Friday, Nov. 18, when Vince DiMartino, W. George Matton Professor of Music Emeritus at Centre College, joins Australian John Foster on the Weisiger Stage at Norton Center for the Arts for Sound the Trumpets! The master performers will use relics, ranging from found objects to the most fragile and intricately constructed instruments, to tell the story—in a fast-paced and often humorous way—of one of the world’s most vibrant and recognizable instruments: the trumpet.
“When you have a superb talent like Vince DiMartino living in your midst, it is important to showcase his talent locally in a way that is unique to the community and to the artist,” said Norton Center Executive Director Steve Hoffman. “Vince and I discussed how to present a music concert that would be exciting, fun, musical and meaningful. He also wanted to invite John Foster back to the United States and do something other than a simple recital.”
Hoffman explains they ultimately landed on the idea of taking the audience on a journey through time that explores all types of trumpets and trumpet music. Among the variety of instruments to be featured from the trumpet family include the conch shell, Shofar, Digeridoo and English Slide Trumpet, as well as predominately brass music styles, such as the music of the Civil War, New Orleans jazz, pops and classical.
“The performance will feature music excerpts, a little narrative and a lot of brass,” says Hoffman. “We laughed about how fast-paced the performance will be and how fun it will be to play so many different musical styles. We also thought about how incredible a trumpet concert will sound in the intimacy of Weisiger Theatre.”
DiMartino is known as one of the most sought after trumpet performers and educators in the world. A 1972 graduate of The Eastman School of Music, he taught at the University of Kentucky until 1993, followed by an appointment as distinguished artist in residence at Centre, where he taught trumpet, jazz history, brass and jazz ensembles. He also served as chair of Centre’s music program, coordinator of the College’s instrumental program, and he was honored with the title of Matton Professor of Music.
The renowned musician has also performed with some of this country’s finest jazz and musical ensembles, including the highly acclaimed Skidmore Jazz Institute, the Army Jazz Band, the United States Marine Band, the Cincinnati Pops, the Lionel Hampton Band, the Chuck Mangione Band, the Clark Terry Band and The Eastman Arranger’s Holiday Orchestra. Locally, he is known as one of the co-founders of the Great American Brass Band Festival.
DiMartino has twice served as president and vice president of the International Trumpet Guild as well as a member of its board of directors. He currently serves as board chair of the National Trumpet Competition in Washington, D.C. In 2004, he was honored as the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) Professor of the Year for the state of Kentucky and received the Governor’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008.
Australian John Foster currently serves as the artistic director of the Australian Baroque Brass and is widely renowned as the foremost authority on historical trumpet and cornetto. A member of the Sydney Symphony from 2001-2013, he has appeared as a soloist at festivals and concert series worldwide, performing with many leading orchestras including the Sydney Symphony, the Australian Chamber Orchestra, the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, the Adelaide Symphony, Concerto Grosso Heidelburg, the St. Thomas Boys’ Choir of Leipzig (Germany) and the Collegium Musicum Grossmunster (Switzerland), to name a few. Foster also performed J.S. Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 with Belgium’s leading baroque orchestra, Il Fundamento, in 2011 and was the soloist for the launch of the Kammerorchester Basel’s (Switzerland) 2012 season.
Like DiMartino, Foster is dedicated to music education and has given master classes and lectures throughout the world including at the Juilliard School of Music, Sydney Conservatorium of Music, the Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts, Northwestern University and Indiana University, among others. He is the author of two books: “The Natural Trumpet and Other Related Instruments” released in 2010, and “The Baroque Trumpet Revival” released just last year and met with critical acclaim.