The title for the concert “Rhythm and Brass”  tells it like it is. Nebraska Brass performs with guest percussionist Chris Varga. But dig this:. Varga has laid down new tracks, a three-movement piece premiering in four concerts this month, one of which is in Council Bluffs. Varga’s got major jazz credits having swung on vibes and drums Chicago-wise and at the Montreux Jazz Festival and festivals in Seoul and Singapore. But his range doesn’t stop there. Add classical gigs, rock, pop, avant-garde. As for what else is on tap, catch a sampling of Raymond Scott’s deliberately pop, pure fun stuff, such as tunes and melodies defined to a fare-thee-well by the Warner Brothers title of Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies or underscoring the flipping, flopping and flying of Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, Daffy Duck, Ren and Stimpy and The Simpsons. Likewise, direct your ears towards something of our time by Gwyneth Walker along with arrangements by contemporaries Gerald Endsley and Robert Elkjar modifying, brass-wise, pieces by Mexico’s Jaime Texidor and Ravel’s “Pavane.”  The Brass guys: Brad Obbink and Dean Haist playing trumpets, Mark Mendell on trombone, with Ric Ricker’s horn and Ken Kielniarz within the tuba.  They’ve got rhythm. They’ve got music. Who could ask for anything more?

Rhythm and Brass is heard Thurs. May 21 at Broadway United Methodist Church,11 South 1st Street, Council Bluffs. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: students free, $10-$12.

Subscribe to The Reader Newsletter

Our awesome email newsletter briefing tells you everything you need to know about what’s going on in Omaha. Delivered to your inbox every day at 11:00am.

Become a Supporting Member

Subscribe to and become a supporting member to keep locally owned news alive. We need to pay writers, so you can read even more. We won’t waste your time, our news will focus, as it always has, on the stories other media miss and a cultural community — from arts to foods to local independent business — that defines us. Please support your locally-owned news media by becoming a member today.

Leave a comment