The UNM Symphonic Band, Percussion Ensemble and Saxophone Choir held a concert Wednesday evening.

“There’s always a few (issues while playing), but for the most part, it came together really well,” said Samantha Rice, a clarinet player in the Symphonic Band.

The concert started with the Percussion Ensemble taking the stage, all holding various sizes of triangles, as the piece they played, “Escape: Sextet for Triangles” by Drew Worden, only required triangles.

The ensemble members included: Mark Gallegos, Shane Corwin, David Morton, Tina Marquez and Jesse Culberson. The percussionists finished their song by sounding a single note and tossing their triangles in the air, which caused several audience members to jump and gasp. Every member managed to catch their instrument.

Next the Saxophone Choir marched onto the stage, dressed in red, pink, white and black in the spirit of Valentine’s Day. They played music by Steven Bryant and Roger May.

May’s piece particularly seemed to make an impression on the crowd, as a handful of audience members began to bob their heads to the music. During “Sax Circus,” a few saxophone players took turns playing long, drawn-out notes with their instruments.

One of the audience members, David Holets, said he especially enjoyed hearing a variety of different types of saxophones.

“I enjoyed the percussionists at the very beginning and the different saxophones, different brass that they had playing in the ensembles,” he said. “It was actually pretty nice.”

It wasn’t until the Symphonic Band took the stage that someone stood up to talk to the audience about the production. Symphonic Band Director Chad Simons made some cracks about spending his Valentine’s Day putting on a concert instead of celebrating with his wife some other way.

Holets said that he thought it was an interesting idea to spend the holiday at a concert.

“We don’t think about spending a Valentine’s (Day) listening to a concert, but actually it was quite enjoyable,” he said. “Just have a little time together (enjoying) the concert and music.”

Holets came with Rita Holets to watch their daughter, Elizabeth Holets, who is a member of the Symphonic Band, perform.

Katie Henderson, a student conductor, conducted “Fanfare for a Golden Sky” by Scott Boerma. Simons conducted the rest of the pieces, which included music by Vincent Persichetti and Michael Markowski.

“It takes a lot of time and a lot of practice outside of class and a lot of dedication inside of class,” Rice said. “It’s a really big process, but it works together really nicely.”

Ariel Lutnesky is a freelance reporter for the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted at or on Twitter @ArielLutnesky.