The GPRC Wind Ensemble is a 40-piece band in the university music school tradition of symphonic wind ensemble and symphonic wind orchestras. Wind ensembles under their various names (usually with the name symphonic since the 1980s) have been a part of college and university music schools since the 1950s with the Eastman Wind Ensemble being one of the earliest and most famous of these groups. The group plays original band works and orchestral transcriptions (orchestra pieces arranged for the band) with the intent of exposing the musicians and the public to the great works of music history.
The GPRC wind ensemble consists of community members, college students, and school students who play flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, saxophone, trumpet, horn, trombone, euphonium, tuba, and percussion. The musicians are generally placed in the group according to background and experience, and recommendations of band directors whom they have worked with. An audition is not necessary.
The group is open to musicians from ages 13 to 70 and it provides an enhanced music experience for school and college musicians, and an ensemble for skilled musicians in the community. The main aspect of the ensemble is to develop young musicians by providing a positive, nurturing environment. This group builds ability in its members and provides a high-quality musical experience that allows for them to make musical contributions to the many other community music experiences in Grande Prairie and area including the GPRC Jazz Ensemble, Grande Prairie Symphony Orchestra, GPLT musical productions, Grande Prairie Marching Band, Tuesday Night Jazz Ensemble, and many other community musical organizations. The group is currently directed by Dr. Robert (Bob) Howey, who holds a Doctoral of Musical Arts (DMA) in Instrumental Music Education from Arizona State University.
The wind ensemble is always looking for new members in every section of the band. The group performs three concerts every year in the Douglas J. Cardinal Performing Arts Centre. Besides the school music students, the ensemble is open to anyone who has some high school band experience and wants to play some fun and exciting music.
Feel free to contact me or any of the wind ensemble members if you are interested in joining the group. We rehearse on Thursday nights from 7:00 - 9:30pm.
We have four performances during the year: a fall concert, the Festival of Carols, a spring concert and the Grande Prairie Music Festival.
If you are a previous member you can register online. If you are a new member please contact the Conservatory Office.