Tuba, baritone and euphonium players are invited to register for the 48th anniversary TUBACHRISTMAS concert Saturday, Dec. 10.
Registration is 9:30 a.m. at Eldorado High School, 11300 Montgomery Blvd. NE. After registration, musicians will rehearse at 10:30 a.m. The concert performance is at 3 p.m. at the Albuquerque Old Town Gazebo.
The registration cost is $10 and small music books may be purchased for $16 and large ones for $21. Music books from last year can be used, as the music has not changed. Participants need to bring their own music stand and a folding chair.
The concert will be outdoors, and the weather may be cold. Participants and guests are asked to dress appropriately. Parking for the concert can be found at Albuquerque Museum, 2000 Mountain Road NW.
The concert conductor is Chris Smith with guest conductor Stephen Snowden Jr. To learn more about registration and the concert, contact event coordinator Andrew Linderkamp at 505-315-7537 or by email at Alndrkmp@yahoo.com.
In 2020, the Albuquerque TUBACHRISTMAS concert was performed virtually because of COVID-19 health concerns and restrictions. Watch the performance on the YouTube video below posted by Jordan Sayre.
TUBACHRISTMAS concerts honors the late William John Bell
TUBACHRISTMAS concerts began in 1974 by Harvey Phillips as a tribute to his teacher and mentor William John Bell. The first TUBACHRISTMAS concert was Dec. 22 at New York City’s Rockefeller Plaza Ice Rink. The concert was conducted by Paul Lavalle with Christmas music arranged by American composer Alec Wilder.
The TUBACHRISTMAS website says, “Through the legendary William J. Bell we reflect on our heritage and honor all great artists/teachers whose legacy has given us high performance standards, well structured pedagogy, professional integrity, personal values and a camaraderie envied by all other instrumentalists.”
Bell was one of the top tuba players and teachers in the U.S. during the first half of the 20th century. He played in the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic, among other bands. Bell was a professor at the Manhattan School of Music, and some of his students include Harvey Phillips, Joseph Novotny, Abe Torchinsky and Ed Livingston. Bell died in 1971.
Young musicians are encouraged to learn from different events around Albuquerque
Madison Middle School band teacher Caitlynn Camacho said during a Dec. 1 school performance that there are many opportunities for music students to participate in over the holidays.
In addition to the TUBACHRISTMAS concert, Albuquerque’s Dec. 3 Twinkle Light Parade will feature marching bands from different high schools in Albuquerque. The parade starts at 5:15 p.m. in Nob Hill.
The Albuquerque Concert Band performs Sunday, Dec. 4, in Albuquerque’s downtown Kimo Theater, and on Tuesday, Dec. 6, Sandia High School will host a Winter Band Concert in the school’s band room at 6 p.m. Symphonic and concert bands are scheduled to play at that performance.
“So, lots of chances for kiddos to go see another music program perform,” Camacho said, adding that her students can receive extra credit by attending a performance. “They just need to either bring a program to me if there is one, or if they go to something that doesn’t have one, just snap a selfie of themselves with a parade behind them or whatever and I’ll give them extra credit points for going and being part of the larger Albuquerque music community.”