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Concert to highlight two past Castle Valley area instructors

The Eastern Utah Wind Symphony stands in the College of Eastern Utah music building with their instruments ready for a concert. They will be performing a number of pieces under the direction of three different conductors on Nov. 8.

The Eastern Utah Wind Symphony, a college-community band at College of Eastern Utah, will appear in concert on Saturday, Nov. 8 at 7:30 p.m. in the CEU Jennifer Leavitt Student Center. Joining Gregory Benson, CEU music professor and dean of arts and sciences, as conductors for the evening will be two special guests: Wayne Erickson, professor of music and director of bands at Utah Valley University, and Derral Siggard, retired CEU music professor and conductor of the Cache Community Band in Logan. The program will feature several standard works for concert band.

Guest conductor Derral Siggard was a band director with the Carbon School District through most of the 1960s, with the Carbon High School Band being heralded in many venues. In 1968, Mr. Siggard moved to College of Eastern Utah to become band and music theory instructor. He remained at CEU until his retirement in the 1990s. Mr. Siggard is past president of the Utah Music Educators Association and was also recognized by UMEA as Outstanding Music Educator in 1995. He will conduct a concert march, Brighton Beach by William Latham, and a classic overture, Overture for Winds by Charles Carter, with the Wind Symphony.

Guest conductor Wayne Erickson is a Price native and a graduate of CEU. Early in his career, Mr. Erickson was a band director with the Carbon and Emery schools and was at CEU as a one-year sabbatical replacement for Mr. Siggard in the 1970s. He has been at Utah Valley University since the 1980s. Mr. Erickson is past president of the Utah Music Educators Association and currently serves as western division president for the College Band Directors National Association. He will conduct a choral transcription, Salvation Is Created by Pavel Tschesnekoff, and a classic overture, Emperata Overture by Claude Smith, with the Wind Symphony.

Conductor Gregory Benson joined the College of Eastern Utah music faculty in 1999. Dr. Benson led successful school bands in Michigan during the 1980s and is credited with advancing the instrumental program at Westark College (now University of Arkansas-Fort Smith) in the 1990s. He is past editor of the Utah Music Educators Journal and is currently western division secretary-treasurer for the College Band Directors National Association. Dr. Benson will conduct a Latin-style work, Symphonic Dance No. 3 by Clifton Williams, and a folk-song medley, A Tribute to Grainger by Chalon Ragsdale, with the Wind Symphony. The concert finale, Battle Hymn of the Republic, will feature vocal soloist Kelton Wells, a recent Carbon High School graduate and a current student at College of Eastern Utah.

The band concert in the Jennifer Leavitt Student Center is sponsored by the CEU Department of Music. Admission is free.

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