Wind Ensemble gives oboe player place to perfect her passion

Ann Savage, IV Leader Staff

By Anne Savage
IV Leader Staff

Jodie Savage is an IVCC Wind Ensemble oboe player, with a passion for music. This has been the driving force for her to be an accomplished oboist.  She has been involved with the local band programs for most of her life.
“How long have you been in the band program?”
Savage replied, “For 10 years. I started when I was in fourth grade.”
With all the previous experience there must be obvious differences in teaching styles from High school to the college level performance.
Savage stated, “When I enrolled in the wind ensemble I thought that the instructor would have lessons once a week for the players to go over the band music. Like they did in the grade school, middle school and even high school, but they don’t. If you want to play the music well, you must practice it outside of the classroom on your own time. The instructor does not waste his time trying to get you to play the music. It is all on your shoulder to do it and do it well.”
Savage practices, on average, 14 hours a week. This is not an assignment. She is expected to know the music pieces and know them well enough that she can play in time and tune with the entire band.
She also has another motive to do well. The Wind Ensemble program is not only for students but also for area band directors.  Savage’s elementary and high school teachers are now her peers, and she has studied clarinet, oboe and vocal under three of them.
Savage said, “It was very weird at first. It took some getting used to”.
IVCC Wind Ensemble band does not perform at football or basketball games.
They have two concerts a semester. With that in mind the band does not march.
If she was to transfer to Northern Illinois University or another four year college, the band programs there will more than likely require her again to march.
But as for IVCC, Savage stated, “It was a pleasant surprise for me. I did not like marching all that much. I found it difficult to walk and play my instrument“.
For someone who was just learning how to play an instrument and wanted to take this class, Savage would inform them “Take this class only if you are willing to put forth the effort to practice the music. It’s not only yourself that you want to sound good, but blending in with the entire ensemble. The result is making the whole band sound good and that is not an easy task.”
“Being amongst quite a few accomplished players, they are always willing to help you if you are willing to learn. Everyone is very friendly and it is quite a positive group to be around.”
Normally the concerts are performed at the IVCC auditorium, but with the construction that is taking place in the auditorium the last was concert held at the La Salle Peru High school auditorium.
The next concert will be on April 29, the location is yet to be determined.