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March 16, 2012

Contact: Michele Abba

Cal Poly Presents State’s Best High School Musicians in Concert April 15

SAN LUIS OBISPO – The Cal Poly Music Department will host the All-State Festival Concert, featuring more than 130 of the state’s best high school musicians, at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, April 15, in Harman Hall in the Performing Arts Center.

The All-State Festival Wind Orchestra, Festival Symphony Orchestra, and Festival Jazz Band will perform as part of the closing festivities of Cal Poly’s three-day Open House event. The festival’s Solo Competition winner will also perform, accompanied by pianist Susan Azaret Davies. 

The Festival Symphony Orchestra, with guest conductor Eric Garcia, will perform “Polovetsian Dances” from “Prince Igor” by Alexander Borodin and “Danzón No. 2” by Arturo Márquez. 

Garcia is the assistant conductor for both the Seattle Symphony and the Eastern Music Festival. In Indiana, he was director of orchestral activities and professor of conducting at the University of Evansville and was music director of the Evansville Philharmonic Youth Orchestra. He has served as music director at St. Xavier University in Chicago, where he also held several conducting positions and appeared as guest conductor with the Northwest Festival Orchestra of Illinois, members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony Orchestra and Civic Orchestra of Chicago.

David Eshelman will be guest conductor of the Festival Jazz Band. They will perform “Nice to Meet You” by John Clayton, “The Penguin” by Raymond Scott, “Los Brujos De Cisano” by Matt Harris and “Rick’s Licks,” by Craig Biondi. 

Eshelman is a trombonist, composer, arranger, big-band leader, recording artist and jazz educator. His music has been performed by the bands of Joe Henderson, Don Ellis, Bill Watrous and Stan Kenton, as well as hundreds of school bands around the world. He has been a featured soloist with Joe Henderson, Tito Puente, Gerald Wilson, Ray Brown, and the Full Faith and Credit Big Band. He was the director of jazz studies at Cal State East Bay for many years

The Festival Wind Orchestra, with guest conductor Craig Kirchhoff, will perform “Flourish for Glorious John” by Ralph Vaughan Williams, “The Jig is Up!” by Daniel Kallman, “Amazing Grace” arranged by William Himes, and “Of Sailors and Whales” by W. Francis McBeth.

Kirchhoff is director of bands and professor of conducting at the University of Minnesota. He is past president of the College Band Directors National Association and served as the founding editor and principal advisor of the College Band Directors National Association Journal. He has appeared as guest conductor, clinician and lecturer throughout the U. S., Australia, Canada, Europe, Japan and Taiwan. Kirchhoff is a frequent guest conductor of the Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra and has recorded with the group on the Kosei Publishing label.

Tickets to the concert are $14 and $18 for the public, $12 and $16 for seniors, and $8 and $11 students. They can be purchased at the Performing Arts Ticket Office from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. To order, call SLO-ARTS (805-756-2787). Discounts are given to patrons who buy tickets to four or more Music Department season events.

The concert is sponsored by Cal Poly’s College of Liberal Arts, Music Department, and Instructionally Related Activities program. For more information, call the Music Department at 756-2406 or go online to

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