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The University of Oklahoma Trombone Choir will perform at McPherson College

The University of Oklahoma Trombone Choir will perform at McPherson College on February 5th. Photo courtesy of McPherson College

McPherson College

MCPHERSON – Irvin Wagner and the University of Oklahoma Trombone Choir will perform at McPherson College as part of the Fern Lingenfelter Artist Series.

The concert is scheduled for 3:00 pm on February 5 at Brown Auditorium. Admission to the concert is free. Wagner is a 1959 graduate of McPherson College and a former bandleader.

In addition to the Trombone Choir, this high-energy concert will spotlight a Solo Trombone Quartet. The quartet includes Brent Mead, principal of the Wichita Symphony; Randy Crow, adjunct brass instructor at McPherson College; Dan Hinman, professor of trombone at Kansas State University; and Matt Blauer of the Wichita Symphony, making McPherson the “trombone capital of Kansas,” for the evening, according to Wagner. The Lingenfelter Concert will feature some of Wagner’s original compositions alongside classical and jazz trombone pieces. Wagner concerts are entertaining, educational, and enjoyed by musicians and non-musicians alike.

Wagner’s remarkable career includes conducting, performing and teaching trombone for 53 years at the University of Oklahoma. He is a founding member of the Oklahoma Brass Quintet and leads the popular OU Trombone Choir. He is a member of the Oklahoma City Philharmonic and conductor of many of that orchestra’s pop concerts. He has also served as guest conductor of the Kansas City Symphony, the Santa Fe (Argentina) Symphony, the Paraguay National Symphony Orchestra, the St. Petersburg Imperial Orchestra, and others. His compositions and his arrangements are in demand by many leading symphony orchestras and trombone choirs. In 2019 he received the International Trombone Association Lifetime Achievement Award.

He is a pioneer of trombone ensembles through his education at the Eastman School of Music where he studied with Emory Remington and later began researching early music for trombone ensembles. The OU Trombone Choir, with Wagner as conductor, performs frequently at major conventions and many times at the International Trombone Festival. Approximately 30 musicians from the choir will perform at McPherson’s concert.

“I have been fortunate enough to travel to many parts of the world as a trombone soloist and conductor,” Wagner said. “I call McPherson my hometown and McPherson College is where I received an amazing education. I owe McPherson College for my wonderful education as a musician and as a person and for forming the foundation of everything I’ve been able to do.”

Following the concert, Wagner will host a masterclass for trombonists and other bass players from area public schools and colleges; members of the public who wish to do so are welcome to stay for this teaching and learning opportunity.

Admission to the Lingenfelter concert is free thanks to a generous donation to McPherson College in honor of Fern Lingenfelter. Lingenfelter, a McPherson College alumna, taught piano at McPherson for many years to undergraduate students on campus and junior students in her downtown studio. Her son, Steve Clark, president of the Wichita-based Clark Investment Group, established the fund which supports two annual music events with a focus on the piano.

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