Today's image is titled Tuba Christmas was photographed by Michael Leland
The Wisconsin Capitol Rotunda resonated on Saturday with the deep dulcet tremors of TubaChristmas, a seasonal celebration of the brass instrument family that includes the tuba, sousaphone, baritone horn, and euphonium. Founded by acclaimed tuba soloist Harvey Phillips in 1974 to recognize the legacy and Christmas Day birthday of the 20th Century tuba eminence William Bell, the festivities have spread from its beginnings on the ice rink at Rockefeller Center to nearly 250 cities around the nation.
One hundred performers of all ages and talents turned out for the 2008 edition of Tuba Christmas in Madison. Rehearsing briefly before the spectacle with UW-Madison tuba and euphonium professor John Stevens, the ensemble subsequently arrayed itself on the second floor of the Rotunda and performed before a crowd of hundreds lining the gallery railings surrounding the gleaming lights of the Capitol Tree. A taste of the Capitol show can be found in a brief video clip, also shot by Leland.
This was one of four TubaChristmas celebrations held across Wisconsin on Saturday, with the other performances to be found in Appleton, Milwaukee, and Sheboygan. The set list included Christmas classics like "Jingle Bells," "God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen" and "Silent Night," and many other selections drawn from Carols for a Merry TubaChristmas, a collection of sheet music arranged by Alec Wilder and Norlan Bewley.
"Through Alec Wilder we express our respect and gratitude to all composers who continue to embrace our instruments with their compositions," declare the global organizers of TubaChristmas, "and contribute to the ever growing solo and ensemble repertoire for tuba and euphonium."
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