Deanna Swoboda, Director
The Tuba/Euphonium Ensemble is comprised of all members of Western Michigan University's Tuba/Euphonium Studio (generally eight to nine tubas and four to six euphoniums). The ensemble performs a wide variety of pieces, giving the students the opportunity to perform not only music uncharacteristic of their instruments, but uncharacteristic to the "classically" trained musician. Since the majority of the members are music education students, it helps train them to teach varied styles. For the performance majors, it teaches them to vary their tone color and style to quickly match the character of a piece.
The ensemble offers the challenge for accompanying instruments to experience inner harmonic voices as well as melodic lines and bass lines. Emphasis is placed on chordal intonation, balance, blend, tone quality, clarity and phrase shaping. Since most students play in large ensembles with four or more tubas and two to three euphoniums, this ensemble teaches them to play as a unit that incorporates all the aforementioned musical aspects.
In some instances, the rehearsal time is used as a master class with students performing for each other. Important topics are also presented and discussed.
Professor Deanna Swoboda conducts the ensemble. Upper-class music education students are encouraged to rehearse and conduct pieces. The ensemble meets every Friday afternoon from 2 to 3 p.m.