The student news site of Wayne State College

The Wayne Stater

The student news site of Wayne State College

The Wayne Stater

The student news site of Wayne State College

The Wayne Stater

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A Touch of Brass

A local brass quintet is set to play a diverse program of music in the Peterson Fine Arts building on Wayne State College campus Feb. 4 at 2 p.m.  

The performance will last about one hour in length and will be livestreamed through the WSC events page. The performance will take place in the newly renovated Ramsey Theatre and is open to the public. There is no cost to attend.  

“There will be a large variety of music that will appeal to everybody,” David Bohnert said, a member of the group.  

“The music varies from a Latin piece to a country barn dance piece,” Josh Calkin said, another member of the group. The performance includes songs by George Frideric Handel, Coldplay, Irving Berlin and more.  

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“It is a very diverse program,” Bohnert said. “We try to pick repertoire that will have kind of a global appeal.” 

Students are not required to attend this performance but are encouraged to take this as an opportunity for exposure, Calkin said.  

“Especially for the brass players, I hope that they take advantage of coming to the concert and kind of hearing the music,” Calkin said.  

The group is very fun to watch and listen to, Grant Ferrell said, an active band student at WSC.  

“They play a good mix of classical pieces and other more modern renditions of songs,” Ferrell said. Ferrell is part of the student brass quintet on campus called, “The Brass Knuckles.” 

The musical group has performed at WSC since 1975, said Bohnert. “A Touch of Brass” is composed of five collegiate educators. Bohnert, the dean of the school of arts and humanities at WSC, plays the trumpet. Calkin, a professor in the music department at WSC, plays the tuba. Randy Neuharth, a retired professor from Northeast Community College in Norfolk, plays the trombone. Kevin McClouth, a current professor at Northeast Community College, plays the trumpet. Gary Reeves, a retired professor from the University of South Dakota, plays the horn. “That has just been the common brass quintet setup is two trumpets, horn, trombone and tuba,” Bohnert said.  

Bohnert and Calkin both started band in fifth grade. Bohnert received an undergraduate degree in music education from Southeast Missouri State.  

“I had a really good teacher that really inspired me and so from there I went to grad school,” Bohnert said. Bohnert later received a masters degree in music and a doctorate in trumpet performance. Bohnert joined “A Touch of Brass” in 1998.  

“One of the first recordings I ever heard that lit a fire in me to be a musician was a brass quintet,” Calkin said. Calkin was in a brass quintet throughout his education earning an undergraduate degree, masters degree and doctoral of musical arts. Calkin joined “A Touch of Brass” in 2008.    

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