I just completed a week-long residency in the Quad Cities (Davenport, IA; Bettendorf, IA; Moline, IL; and Rock Island, IL) with the Atlantic Brass. It was our third time back as Quad Cities Arts Visiting Artists, which included performing three concerts a day in schools and other venues through out the week. We also gave a full recital Tuesday night at the John Deere Administrative Center, and were soloists with the Quad Cities Symphony Orchestra Holiday Pops concert. Held at the iWireless Center, the Holiday Pops center was an extravaganza of epic proportions. It included a children’s choir, an adult choir, a drumline from Moline High School, lights, and about a dozen costumed ice skaters.
Here is an excerpt from the review:
The Quad City Arts’ visiting artist was the Atlantic Brass Quintet, and they provided a warm, solid sound to some beloved holiday favorites. Mr. Smith introduced them in a “dueling” piece with the QCSO brass quintet (“In Dulci Jubilo”), but decided that term sounded too harsh for the season and said they simply were “communicating” back and forth.
The local brass more than held their own, trading buoyant phrases with the guests. The ABQ returned a few other times, including a delightful medley in the second half. The quintet’s gorgeous renditions were precise and radiant.
Although it was tiring, it was a rewarding and enjoyable week, and I got a chance to explore the area a bit more. There were a lot of things going on, including the Festival of Trees, for which we played a few events, including the lighting of their Remembrance Tree. (Special Thanks to Dave Hamburg of the Quad Cities Brass Quintet for loaning us some Christmas music for the ceremony)
We enjoyed our great accomodations at the Stoney Creek Inn, and checked out some of the local spots like Dead Poets Espresso, Lagomarcino’s, Bent River Brewery and Restaurant, and Bier Stube, the local German restaurant. Dead Poets had a great vibe and excellent coffee, Bent River had an outstaning American Wheat, Lagomarcino’s is an amazing soda fountain style shop with fabulous homemade chocolates, ice cream, fountain drinks, and sandwiches. I would recommend them all if you are ever in the area.