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Tribute in A Major

The penultimate piece Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote before his death was “Concerto for Clarinet in A Major.” The popular piece was performed by professor Brian Moorhead and appropriately concluded last night’s faculty and guest recital: “Mozart and More,” which featured a broad spectrum of performers, including students, faculty, alumni and performers from the Florida Orchestra.

The recital was a tribute to USF’s 50th anniversary, the 250th anniversary of Mozart’s birth, Moorhead’s 30th year as principal clarinet in the Florida Orchestra and his 20th year teaching at USF.

The concert commemorated the ongoing relationships the School of Music has outside and within its walls.

“There is an informal and vital relationship between the Florida Orchestra and the School of Music,” Moorhead said. However, he explained that the night was also to recognize the close relationships between the School’s faculty and students both present and past.

“The concert shows us as teachers, but how we relate to students because we are performers,” he said.

Brooke Baldwin, who performed with the “Clarinets with Class” choir ensemble, stressed the importance of celebrating these relationships.

“There is a wide range of people: freshman just starting out, and then there is me, a medical student who enjoys performing, as well as other returning alumni,” she said.

Wade Weast, director of the School of Music, said seven of the School’s faculty members are involved with the Florida Orchestra, and added that students occasionally get to take to the stage with their instructors.

“Some of the School’s better students sometimes get chances to sub when an orchestra member is absent for a performance,” Weast said. Each year, selected composition students have their works performed by the Florida Orchestra.

The recital featured four pieces by Mozart, as well as one work by Jacques Bouffil. Susan Haig, associate conductor of the Florida Orchestra, remarked to the audience about her admiration of Mozart’s works.

“All of us as performers want that freedom to express,” Haig said.Moorhead agreed. “His works are immortal,” he said.

Although Mozart’s works were spotlighted throughout the evening, Rebecca Vincent, a first-year music education major and concert performer, said the general theme was how music is a part of our history and culture.

“It’s important for us to educate ourselves about it and appreciate it,” she said.