Remember, you heard it here first!

On April 19th I wrote about my nephew, Nathanael McCroskey-Izzett, debuting as a conductor for a piece he composed for his senior project.  At the time I said that as soon as it was online, I’d put it up so you could hear it.

Nathanael McCroskey-Izzett

Nathanael McCroskey-Izzett

My sister, Lauryn, sent me the link today with a couple of provisos:  1) The video isn’t perfectly synced.  The part that bothers her the most is the musical part, but to my untrained ear I don’t notice it.  What I do notice is the introduction my brother-in-law, Rob, gives for the piece where his lips and his voice are out of sync.  If you want to skip the introduction, the performance begins at 4:31 on the YouTube.  2) In her own words my sister says, “Please be advised that it is MUCH better if listened to with headphones, earbuds, or at LEAST some external speakers; otherwise you lose the lower voices in the band and it sounds hollow.”  The other thing she said is that if anyone is interested in buying a DVD of the performance, they are selling it for $10.  The proceeds are going into a college fund for Nate.  Contact me if you are interested and I’ll forward your e-mail to her.

If you want to skip Rob’s introduction but need a refresher on how my nephew came to do this, here’s the story:

Rob used to teach band in Vernonia, Oregon, a small town between Portland and the coast.  Several years ago a combination of melting snows and drenching rains flooded the town, including the high school and especially including the band room.  All the sheet music for the band classes was ruined.  One could say there were more important issues…People had lost their homes and businesses were devastated.  The town was discouraged and trying to decide what to do.  Those in charge of the school finally decided to rebuild on higher ground.  Rob sent word out to every band conductor he could think of about needing sheet music and Robert Sheldon, a famous composer who was also involved with a sheet music publishing company, sent boxes and boxes of music representing sixty pieces of music for band!  When the new school was finished Robert Sheldon came and met Rob and Nate and toured the new school and the new band room.

Here it is several years later and Nate’s senior class requirement was to do something this year for which he needed a mentor.  Nate had started composing a piece of music in his sophomore year to commemorate and honor the people of Vernonia for rebuilding after the flood, and he decided that he’d finish the piece for his senior project.  Robert Sheldon agreed to mentor him.

Without further ado, here is the link to Vernonia Overture composed and conducted by Nathanael McCroskey-Izzett:

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