Music Director Emeritus
Mr. Bass, the composer, has achieved an impressive array of performances and commissions by prestigious ensembles throughout the United States, among these: the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra and the Boston Pops Orchestra. His Gloria was premiered at Carnegie Hall in 1990 by the New York Pops Orchestra under Skitch Henderson; this same composition has been recorded by the Boston Pops Orchestra with Keith Lockhart and can be heard on their Christmas CD release, Holiday Pops.
His arrangement of Conquest of Paradise, by Vangelis, was commissioned by the Boston Pops Orchestra and can be heard on their 2000 CD re-release Summon the Heroes, under the baton of eminent film composer John Williams. Additionally, his works have been performed by the Tanglewood Chorus, The Mormon Tabernacle Choir, the Grand Rapids Symphony and Chorus, the Dallas Symphony and Chorus as well as numerous other orchestras and choruses throughout the U. S. and Europe. Active since the late 1970's as an arranger, Mr. Bass is now focusing his talents on original composition, largely due to the demand for his music. In addition to compositions for several of this nation's Armed Service Bands, he has composed an extensive Christmas cantata, commissioned and recently premiered by the First Methodist Church of Lancaster, PA.
Mr. Bass, the performer, sang regularly with the Dallas Symphony Chorus. During the summer of 1997, he toured with that ensemble on their Israeli tour, performing Mahler's Symphony #8 under the baton of Zubin Mehta. More recently, he performed as solo pianist with the Coast Guard Academy Band in New London, CT in his own wind transcription of Ernst von Dohnanyi's Variations on a Nursery Tune. And, of course, Mr. Bass performed regularly with Metropolitan Winds as vocal and piano soloist as well as reprising the role of 'Michigan J. Frog' in "One Froggy Evening".
Born in Fort Worth in 1953, Mr. Bass grew up in Midland, Texas, studying piano, working in community theater and singing with local choral ensembles. A longtime student of choral music, Mr. Bass earned his Bachelors Degree in 1976 from the University of Texas at Austin, a Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting in 1980 from The College-Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati, OH, and pursued doctoral studies in choral and wind conducting at both Ohio State University's Robert Shaw Institute and the University of Texas at Austin.
Mr. Bass has historically worked actively in his various communities to further the non-professional musician's understanding and appreciation for the musical arts. He has founded several civic wind and choral groups during his career, helping to provide other musicians the opportunities he enjoyed as a young performer in civic orchestras, bands and theater groups. He founded the Austin Symphonic Band in 1982 and was its Music Director and Conductor for four years. That group continues to perform as the official musical ensemble for the City of Austin. He was with the Metropolitan Winds from June 1993 to June 2015.
In the fall of 2003, Mr. Bass conducted the National Symphony of London and the Tallis Choir in a CD compendium of many of his Holiday compositions and arrangements, subsequently released under the title A Feast of Carols. Mr. Bass has also conducted the Rochester Philharmonic and Chorale as well as the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra and will be maintaining an active conducting schedule as well as appearing from time to time with Metropolitan Winds as Music Director Emeritus.
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