Elon University / Today at Elon / Thomas Erdmann published an article

Music teacher Thomas Erdmann had an article published in the professional trumpet journal. This is his 290th peer-reviewed published article.

Professor Thomas Erdmann of the Department of Music published an article in the June 2022 issue of The International Trumpet Guild Journal.

The article, “Sarah Wilson: Taking the Road Less Traveled,” is about the forward-thinking jazz trumpeter, composer, and singer, who comes from a non-traditional background.

For a small minority, the road is circuitous and individualistic, involving experiences not usually associated with the drive to master music. It’s on one of these personal and unique paths that Wilson, who the San Francisco Chronicle calls “one of the most intriguing and promising composers and trumpeters on the contemporary music scene,” has traveled to find success. .

Raised in Healdsburg, California, Wilson freely admits that she was not totally dedicated to the trumpet in her youth. Majoring in anthropology at the University of California at Berkeley, the deceased trumpeter was considering a master’s or doctorate. In the field. It was his collegiate interest in acting, however, that led to a chance encounter with a guest performer at Vermont’s Bread and Puppet Theater. After graduating, Wilson moved east and spent two years touring with the ensemble’s productions. It was a turbulent time as Wilson toured in the spring and fall with Bread and Puppet, but spent the winter of 1991-92 in New York (NYC) and the winter of 1992-93 in San Francisco and Oakland. After two years of almost constant travel, she moved to New York for the next 12 years.

There she took a day job at the American Museum of Natural History and, on the recommendation of trumpet player Dave Douglas, studied trumpet with John McNeil and began practicing in earnest. McNeil suggested further trumpet lessons with Laurie Frink. Meanwhile, Wilson turned to the music played at The Knitting Factory by the group of forward-thinking jazz musicians collectively referred to as the New Downtown Music Scene.

Wilson’s background in theater and puppetry proved serendipitous when she was commissioned to write music for the Boston Puppeteer’s Cooperative, all former Bread and Puppet colleagues, for their puppet show at the Lincoln Center for the Arts. It began a six-year stint writing and performing at the Out of Doors Festival at Lincoln Center. Working increasingly as a musician, Wilson gave up her part-time job in order to focus on music. Among the gigs she took were composing a film for the American Museum of Natural History’s Body Art Exhibit, playing the trumpet and singing with the Great Small Works performance collective and other bands like Circus Amok. Although she was offered a scholarship and entry into New York University’s master’s program in composition, it was studying classical music with Schoenberg scholar Paul Caputo that ultimately earned her a bachelor’s degree. in Music from Empire State College.

After 12 years, Wilson returned to the Bay Area and quickly formed a community with California musicians, aided by word of mouth from the community of California musicians she had played with in New York. Working regularly on the West Coast, Europe, and with concerts in New York until the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Wilson is starting to book performances as a frontman again, such as at the 2021 New Trumpet Music Virtual Festival. , as well as taking selected secondary musician positions. His background may be unconventional, but his musicality is indisputable.

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