The musical piece called “Mid-American Sketches,” was commissioned in 2010 for the opening of the high school auditorium and is designed to capture the spirit of the community.
Band director Ray Rickert said he’s thrilled the work is finally available for sale to other orchestras and bands across the country and even the world.
“It’s really available to anybody to see worldwide and it all comes with our name at the top of each page,” he said.
Additionally, the music comes with a synopsis “About the Composition” that details how the music is put together to share the spirit of the Middleville community, and its pride, heritage and hope for the future.
The introduction to the work reads in part, “Composed in three movements, this work’s intention is to capture the spirit of the Middleville community and celebrate the opening of a new state of the art facility - a project that truly brought the community together. After reviewing a myriad of photographs of the community, its architecture and its citizens, as well as several conversations with the director of the high school band, the composer was struck by a clear sense of the importance of family, of togetherness. This sense of heritage and home is a hallmark of the Midwest and Middle-America and serves as the inspiration for all three movements of the work.”
The piece is done in three movements: “New Horizons,” “Home,” and “Tomorrows.”
The introduction gives more insight into each movement.
“New Horizons serves as a celebration not only of the new facility, but also as a tribute to the many people that have established their lives and started their families in Middleville. The second movement, Home, portrays a sense of pride, reverence, security and affection. Whether home, away or abroad, there is a common connection to middle America that is a constant source of warmth. The final movement, Tomorrows, embodies the spirit of the future, of new possibilities as well as a dance-like celebration of community.”
The piece is composed by Ryan Nowlin, who at the time the work was commissioned was the staff arranger for the United States Marine Band. Rickert and Nowlin are both Bowling Green University graduates. Rickert said he heard Nowlin’s compositions and asked him to write the piece for TK.
Rickert said it’s not at all unusual to have high schools have pieces commissioned for special events or special people. But he said actually getting the pieces published and sold worldwide, is a source of pride for the community, district and band program.
TK symphonic bands have already performed the piece a couple of times and Rickert said he will try to have the orchestra perform it every couple of years.
Rickert has been the band director at TK for 20 years and works with the symphonic, concert, marching and jazz bands.
“It took a little longer than expected to have it published, but this is just really incredible and such a great thing,” said Rickert.
The music is in Kjos Music catalog and available to purchase worldwide.