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What Exactly is a Sackbut? Michael Holmes Explains


The Sackbut is an instrument with a strange-sounding name, although the instrument itself doesn't sound all that unusual. It looks and sounds quite similar to our modern-day trombone. But there are some differences. Michael Holmes, founder and director of the Washington Cornett and Sackbut Ensemble (WCSE) http://earlybrassdc.org, explains in this interview with Morning Concert host, Melony Dodson.

Considered one of the premiere ensembles of its kind in North America, the WCSE consists of historic brass instrument specialists based in Washington D.C. Groupings of cornetts and sackbutts were considered to be the standard brass ensemble during the late Renaissance and early Baroque eras. They served multiple purposes: to provide instrumental music, both indoors and out, and also to support the choirs. Founded in 1997, the WCSE celebrates its 25th anniversary year by revisiting the German Kingdoms program from its inaugural concert. They will perform music of Hassler, Scheidt, Schutz, Praetorius, Stoltzer, Speer, and many others. Joining them on their concerts will be bass-baritone Brian Ming Chu, who is based out of Philadelphia.

The highly revered WCSE performs in Knoxville on Monday, November 8th at 7:30pm at Westminster Presbyterian Church, located at 6500 Northshore Drive.  More information at https://wpcknox.org/event/concert-on-november-8-in-the-sanctuary/

Watch a performance by the WCSE here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eohw1WbyWEA" target="_self">

Melony calls the beautiful mountains of Boone, N.C., home, although she was born near Greensboro, N.C. There’s just something about those Blue Ridge Mountains that got in her blood and never left after she moved there to attend Appalachian State University (ASU). While at ASU, she majored in piano performance and music therapy and began to cultivate a love for accompanying and for collaborating with other musicians. This soon led her to earn a master’s degree in collaborative piano at the University of Tennessee, which she attended from 2006-2008.