Sunday, December 16, 2012

Sarah Willis to Interview the Van Halen of Tuba

Carol Jantsch
photo by Ryan Donnell 

This week horn player Sarah Willis will host two livestream interviews which will be streamed from her website. She has been busy. Earlier today she hosted a family concerto with the percussionists of the Berliner Philharmoniker called “Merry ChRYTHMas” that was transmitted over the Digital Concert Hall.

On Monday Willis will be live on her site at 8am on the US East Coast. She will show a film that she created called “How to choose a new Horn,” and then lead a question and answer session with the Alexander Team in Mainz.

And on Tuesday at 3pm EST Willis will interview Carol Jantsch. Jantsch came to our attention in 2006 when she became principal tuba of the Philadelphia Orchestra while still a senior at the University of Michigan. The tuba has suffered more than any other brass instrument at the hands of outmoded stereotypes. She has single-handedly trashed all of them.

While composers have explored the lyrical and powerful colors of the tuba, its agile side has often been overlooked. Jantsch plays with the dexterity and focal clarity of a string player. But not that kind of string player. She is the Van Halen of tuba.

Jantsch will also become our neighbor here in Connecticut. She will join the faculty at Yale in the Fall of 2013, adding some area code 203 to her 215.

I will be tuning in to both of these live-hangouts. These interviews are of musical interest even for those of us outside of the brass community, and the chat room contains a very welcoming, friendly, and knowledgeable bunch of folks.

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