KRWG

John Schutz

Leora Zeitlin

Countless symphonic bands are thriving in towns, cities and schools all over the US, and one of the most prolific composers writing for these ensembles is James Curnow. One of his works will be performed this Sunday by two of the most beloved groups in the region: the Mesilla Valley Concert Band and the El Paso Brass Quintet. Conductor John Schutz and El Paso Brass tuba player James Shearer came to talk with KRWG’s Intermezzo host Leora Zeitlin about how they procured this out-of-print music, the rise of community bands, and some of the other musical pieces on the program.

Leora Zeitlin

Most Americans know the music of Henry Mancini, including his renowned “Pink Panther” theme, but fewer know the composers Clare Grundman and John Edmondson, though they each wrote prolifically for band. All three are among the composers to be featured in the December concert of the New Horizons Band, conducted by John Schutz. Schutz came to KRWG to talk with Intemezzo host Leora Zeitlin about the concert, which will also include an appearance by the Good Time Singers, conducted by his wife, Diane Schutz.

Leora Zeitlin

Conductors John Schutz and Judy Bethmann have brought the joy of music to thousands of young people over several decades as school band directors. Now they find that they are leading some of their students’ parents – and even grandparents – in the New Horizons Band, a local ensemble that is part of an international movement of community bands for people over 50. “A lot of times, the grandparents go hear the kids play. Now, the grandkids are coming to hear grandma and grandpa play. So, it’s pretty exciting,” says Schutz.