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Update: The guest performers for “Bold as Brass” will offer Master Classes that are free and open to the public on Thursday and Friday before the performance. Thursday’s classes include Mark Ridenour (11-11:45 a.m.), Shawn Okpebholo (1-2 p.m. and 2:10-3:10 p.m.) and Tom Bratten (12:30-2 p.m.); on Friday, Stan Pelkey will speak (1-1:50 p.m.). For complete listings, see information at the bottom of this story.

Asbury University will present “Bold as Brass,” a collaboration between the Lexington Brass Band and four acclaimed musical alumni, at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 8 for its second Artist Series event of the academic year. The free performance will take place in Hughes Auditorium and is open to the public.

Performing with the Band for a fast-paced program will be tuba soloist Tom Bratton ’95 (U.S. Army Band), composer Shawn Okpebholo ’03 (Wheaton Conservatory faculty), organist Stanley Pelkey ’94 (Dean at Roberts Wesleyan College) and trumpet soloist Mark Ridenour ’81 (Chicago Symphony).

The program embraces a wide range of styles, including popular works by John Williams, Andrew Lloyd Webber and John Philip Sousa, contrasted with popular classical charts like “Pines of the Appian Way” by Respighi and two concerti — the Torelli “Trumpet Concerto in D” and the Vaughan Williams’ “Tuba Concerto.”

The Lexington Brass BandAmong the special items will be the world premiere of a piece written especially for the occasion by Okpebholo. Taking a 19th-century hymn tune called Repton, he has shaped a fascinating, challenging work that interfaces the subdued Victorian hymn with 21st century sounds, including Hip Hop and Hard Rock rhythms.

“You won’t want to miss this piece — it will lift the roof in Hughes,” said Dr. Ronald Holz, music director of the Lexington Brass Band and a professor at Asbury. “This entertaining package will indeed be bold, exciting, refreshing, and truly inspiring to all who join us that evening.”

Doors will open at 7 p.m., and seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. A reception with the artists will follow the program. For more information, contact Asbury Professor Don Zent at, or call (859) 858-3511, x2246.

Featured Artists
The Lexington Brass Band, now in its 22nd season, holds an annual concert series and has been featured at a variety of major music and brass festivals, including the renowned Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic, the International Trumpet Guild Conference, multiple appearances at the Great American Brass Band Festival and notable Gala Concerts of the North American Brass Band Association.  In 2000 the band was featured as the guest band at the All England Masters Brass Band Championships and recorded a program broadcast on BBC Radio. The fully volunteer ensemble draws its membership from the brass faculty of area universities, school music educators, and a wide range of other professions and has released five albums.

Tom Bratten '95SFC Tom Bratten ’95 has been a member of The U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own” since 1999, when he joined The U.S. Army Ceremonial Band and Brass Band. In 2001, he joined the Concert Band where he performs as Second Tuba. He also performs regularly with The U.S. Army Brass Quintet and The U.S. Army Orchestra. He has appeared as soloist with the band on numerous occasions, including the Association of Concert Bands National Convention, the International Tuba Euphonium Conference, and The U.S. Army Band Tuba-Euphonium Conference. He is the 1998 winner of the Leonard Falcone International Tuba Artist Competition, and in 1999 won a position with the Augusta (Ga.) Symphony before joining the Army. His principal teachers include David Henderson, Dr. Skip Gray and Fred Mills.


Dr. Shawn Okpebholo '03In 2010, Dr. Shawn E. Okpebholo ‘03 joined the faculty of Wheaton College, Conservatory of Music as Assistant Professor of Composition and Music Theory. He previously taught at Union University and Northern Kentucky University. The music of Okpebholo has been performed in most states in the U.S., as well as Canada, Africa, Europe, and Asia. Distinguished venues and festivals include: The Kennedy Center and the National Cathedral (Washington, D.C.); MonteMusic Festival (Goa, India); CBDNA National Conference (Seattle, Wash.); MusicXContemporary Music Festival (Cincinnati, Ohio); PRIZM Ensemble Concert Series (Memphis, Tenn.); and the state music festivals of Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and Texas.


Dr. Stanley Pelkey '94Dr. Stanley C. Pelkey ’94 completed his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Historical Musicology, and an M.A. in European History at the University of Rochester. He graduated from Asbury College a bachelor’s degree, emphasis in music history and organ. A seasoned educator and scholar, he is currently Dean of the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester, N.Y. Pelkey has written and published extensively on motion picture culture and British music history. His latest book, “Anxiety Muted: American Film Music in a Suburban Age,” is forthcoming from Oxford University Press. Pelkey was the 2009 recipient of the Ralph Vaughan Williams Fellowship and remains active as an organist, pianist, and composer.


Mark Ridenour '81Mark Ridenour ‘81 has served as assistant principal trumpet of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra since 1994. From 2003 until 2005, he served as the Orchestra’s acting principal trumpet. He began his professional career in the Lexington (Ky.) Philharmonic while a senior in college. He continued in this position through graduate school and also became a member of the Dayton (Ohio) Philharmonic. Next came an appointment to the trumpet section of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, where he also served as acting principal trumpet his first season. Ridenour then accepted the position of principal trumpet with the Florida Orchestra, where he spent six seasons before coming to Chicago. He has appeared as soloist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Florida Orchestra, Highland Park Strings and Roosevelt University Orchestra as well as brass bands in the United States and Canada, including the Canadian Staff Band of the Salvation Army.

Dr. Ronald W. Holz is a music historian, author, conductor, lecturer and clinician, particularly in the fields of brass and wind music. His guest appearances have taken him throughout the United States, Canada, Great Britain, and Scandinavia. He is considered one of the world’s leading authorities on the repertoire, culture, and history of the British-style brass band. Holz has taught at Asbury since the fall of 1981, and has served as music director of the Lexington Brass Band since its founding in 1992. His graduate training in historical musicology (M.M. and Ph.D.) was completed at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and the University of Connecticut.



Asbury University will host free, open-to-the-public Master Classes by the four guest alumni soloists who are joining the Lexington Brass Band for the spectacular BOLD AS BRASS Artist Series Concert.

Mark Ridenour — Will interact with three Asbury University student musicians on Thursday, November 7th,  during 11—11:45 a.m. Departmental Recital  class in Akers Auditorium. The three students are Freshman trumpeter Christian Hall; Junior violinist Andrea Payton; and Senior Flutist Hannah Dornon. Ridenour will also be giving tutorial sessions with several Asbury student performers as time permits.

Shawn Okpebholo — Will be speaking about his compositions and music theory training in two music department classes on Thursday, November 7th,; both classes will be held in Fine Arts 103: The first class meet 1:00—2:00 p.m., and the second 2:10—3:10 p.m. Okpebholo will also be giving tutorial sessions with several Asbury student composers.

Stan Pelkey — Will be speaking on the topic C. S. Lewis, “Hollow Men,” and Monstrosity in Science Fiction Television on Friday, November 8th, at 1:00—1:50 p.m. in the Miller Communication Building’s Screening Room.

Tom Bratten — Will give several solo and sectional tutorials with low brass players on Friday afternoon, November 8th as well as at the University of Kentucky Music Department, 12:30—2:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 7th.

For further information, please feel free to contact Dr. Ronald Holz at:  or call: 859-858-3511, Ext. 2246