Trumpeting his horn

With summer seemingly just around the corner, Moncton Community Concerts will present their final concert of the 2010-11 Season tomorrow night.

The MCCA closes its season with a bang with the show featuring acclaimed trumpeter Jens Lindemann performing alongside the 12-member Brass Ensemble from Sackville’s Mount Allison University, under the direction of Alan Klaus.

The concert starts at 8 p.m. and takes place at Moncton’s First Church of the Nazarene, located at 21 Fieldcrest Drive.

Alan Klaus is a brass specialist at Mount Allison and the director of the choir, and says he is thrilled that he is thrilled that he and Mt. A’s Brass Ensemble have the opportunity to perform with Lindemann. Alan says that the ensemble began rehearsing for the show this past January.

“We have a very hard working group of students,” he says. “We had initially started with a lot of repertoire to choose from and focused upon and then narrowed down the selections to what we thought would help make a good show.

“We ended up holding mock auditions where the students came in and had to be ready to play excerpts from their parts in front of the remainder of the group. I found it really helped get them motivated in advance of their concert. Every one of these students enjoys the aspect of playing in a group though. It has not been tough to get them motivated and I think a big part of that is because of the love of music that each of them has.”

At the time he spoke to the Times & Transcript last week, Jens Lindemann had the unenviable experience of having flown the red-eye flight from Los Angeles to St. John’s, Newfoundland. Despite his lack of sleep, Jens is unwavering in his excitement at his upcoming Metro performance and return to Moncton.

“In 1985 or 1986, I was in Moncton for the CIBC National Music festival and actually won the competition which gave me my start as a soloist,” he excitedly recounts. “It was the first time that I had managed to do well at a national competition, but knew from that point on that this was going to be my calling.

“Like any place that holds a good memory for you, you have the opportunity to relive those good experiences any time you revisit. Truthfully, I don’t get back to Moncton as often as I should.”

A native of Edmonton, Alberta, Jens now calls Los Angeles his home, when he is there that is. He estimates that he spends anywhere from six to seven months each year touring. Upon leaving the Canadian Brass in 2001, Jens says that he had wanted to move to a city that had a major airport and ended up settling in to a professorship at UCLA.

“I am very fortunate as I am involved in a very liberal professorship that allows me to continue performing solo all round the world.”

Asked if he misses the comparatively small town nature of Edmonton when compared to Los Angeles, he admits that he misses family but jokes that he does not miss shovelling snow. He does note, however, that his experiences have shown him that Canadian cities have a personal touch that is missing in a city the size of Los Angeles.

“Everyone lives in their car in L.A.,” he says. “Planning your social life and outings revolved around how willing you are to deal with the freeways. Prior to moving to Los Angeles, I was used to calling some buddies up, deciding we would meet at whatever bar we wanted and 30 minutes later, there we would be. In L.A., people plan that kind of stuff 10 days in advance. You just don’t spontaneously get together with people there,” he laughs.

Jens says that he relishes the opportunity to perform alongside ensembles as he will be doing tomorrow night. Although they typically agree on the repertoire that will be performed in advance of the show, the fact that Jens travels so frequently means that rehearsals for the show are limited to one 30-minute session.

“There is a very small window of opportunity to put everything together for the show in terms of rehearsal but as far as I am concerned, it helps to add a very exciting element to the concert,” he says. “When we perform, everything is so fresh and though it is under rehearsed, the concert has a spontaneity that you simply can’t get with a pre-formed group.”

In the past four months alone, Jens has been fortunate enough to have performed in places including Korea, Colombia, Ecuador, Austria and England. Though he admits that his schedule is a little on the crazy side, he simply wouldn’t want it any other way.

“Musicians are here to share their talent with others. When you are on the road, the energy of being in a new place really drives you at the end of the day.”

Article published in April 7, 2011 edition of the Times & Transcript