CSU hosts first annual Brass Festival this week

The music program in the School of Music, Theatre and Dance at Colorado State University will present its first annual Brass Festival March 12 through March 14. The festival features workshops, master classes, and special concerts at the University Center for the Arts, located at 1400 Remington St.

Sinister Resonance
Sinister Resonance

This special event brings brass players of all skill levels together for a three-day festival celebrating brass instrumentalists. CSU’s Chris Van Hof, trombone professor and co-director of the festival, said he is very excited for the festival to get started.

“I’m looking forward to the different variety of performances,” Van Hof said. “Brass players seem to have a sort of fellowship, and being all in one place will be fun.”

The festival brings brass players from all over the country together to take part in different professional performances and participate in special master classes. During the festival, each of the four primary brass types – horn, tuba, trumpet and trombone – will host a nationally renowned guest artist to perform as well as teach.

“It was very important to us that the festival be geared toward players of every level [of skill],” said Van Hof. “High school students, college students, professors and even beginners will have something to do.”

Some professors will be come to CSU from as far as New York City to perform and teach master classes.

Festival timeline

The March 12-14 festival features three special concerts:

Brass Festival: Special guests Sinister Resonance with CSU faculty
Thursday, March 12, 7:30 p.m., Organ Recital Hall

Sinister Resonance, is a quartet known for its experimentation with the sonic possibilities of acoustic instruments. Members Mark Hetzler (trombone and electronics), Vincent Fuh, (piano), Nick Moran (bass), and Todd Hammes (drums/percussion) create harmonics from their instruments that create a stark, ghost-like effect.

Brass Festival: Special guest Nick Finzer
Friday, March 13, 7:30 p.m., Organ Recital Hall

Nick Finzer
Nick Finzer

The inaugural Brass Festival continues with a concert by award-winning trombonist Nick Finzer and a cadre of Colorado’s finest jazz brass players. Fizner is a New York City freelancer and also serves as co-founder and artistic director of the Institute for Creative Music, which is dedicated to the education and dissemination of jazz and creative music across the United States. The first half of the concert features Colorado Jazz brass luminaries Brad Goode and Al Hood (trumpet), Paul McKee (trombone) and Tom Ball (jazz euphonium) with the Workshop House Band.

Brass Festival: Workshop guest artists
Saturday, March 14, 1:30 p.m., Organ Recital Hall

The festival concludes with a final concert featuring all the workshop guest artists: trumpeter Jim Thompson, professor at the Eastman School of Music; hornist Johanna Yarbrough, fourth horn for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra; trombonists Mark Hetzler, professor at University of Wisconsin, and Nick Finzer, NYC freelance artist; and tubist Alex Lapins, professor at University of Northern Arizona.


Passes for the festival are available as both full-festival and single-day passes. Full-festival passes are $125, and single-day tickets will be available for $75. Passes are available online or at the door at the UCA. Concert tickets are free with festival registration.

Individual concert tickets are $7 for CSU students, $1 for youth (under 18), and $12 for the public.

Tickets are available at the University Center for the Arts (UCA) ticket office in the UCA lobby Monday through Friday, 3:30 – 5:30 p.m. and 60 minutes prior to performances, by phone at 970-491-ARTS (2787), or online. Youth tickets must be purchased in person at the Ticket Office. All tickets are subject to a $1 ticket fee for both online and at-the-door purchases. Advance ticket purchase is highly recommended to avoid lines and further at-the-door fees.