October 31, 2014  

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New Director of Southern Miss Bands To Make Conducting Debut

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Dr. Catherine Rand

Dr. Catherine Rand makes her conducting debut with The University of Southern Mississippi’s top wind band, the Wind Ensemble, on Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 7:30 p.m. in Bennett Auditorium on the Hattiesburg campus.

“After years of hearing about the wonderful programs here at Southern Miss, I am so excited to be a part of this wonderful community of musicians,” said Rand. “Everyone has been so welcoming and the students have been working so hard to continue the caliber of performance for which the wind ensemble is known.”

The concert includes music that represents the wind ensemble genre of the 21st century and features a performance by Dr. Danilo Mezzadri on flute, for The Shadow of Sirius written by Joel Puckett. This beautiful piece is based upon three poems written by the American poet, W.S. Merlin. Works by David Maslanka, John Mackey, Joel Puckett and Michael Daughtery are also on the program.

“I am very anxious to perform under Dr. Rand. The selection of music will be very entertaining for the ensemble and the audience,” said Brittany Trotter, a music education major from Laurel, Miss.

The final piece on the program is causing quite a buzz around campus. Daugherty’s “Lost Vegas” is a showpiece for the band and a thrilling ride for the audience. Commissioned by the University of Michigan Symphony Band, Michael Haithcock, conductor, and the University of Miami Wind Ensemble, Gary Green, conductor, “Lost Vegas” is a musical homage to bygone days in the city of Las Vegas, Nev.  

The composer notes, “I recall the enormous neon signs punctuating the strip, promoting casinos and hotels ruled by the underworld, and the massive marquees trumpeting performances by pop music legends such as Frank Sinatra and Elvis.”

The concert is free and open to the public. For more information, call 601.266.4990.