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EIU Wind Symphony's 'Celebration Prelude' to Mix Serious Works, Humor



Maestro Hil Arioso

Maestro Hil Arioso, "The World's Greatest Conductor," will make an appearance during the EIU Wind Symphony's "A Celebration Prelude" concert on April 18. The humorous character is played by EIU Wind Symphony conductor Milton Allen.

The Eastern Illinois University Wind Symphony will present something for the entire family -- including humor from Maestro Hil Arioso, "The World’s Greatest Conductor” -- in “A Celebration Prelude” at 4 p.m. Sunday, April 18.

The concert will be held in the Dvorak Concert Hall, Doudna Fine Arts Center. It is designed to set the mood for the following weekend's Celebration: Festival of the Arts on the EIU campus.

The program includes the landmark “Symphony for Band" by Vincent Persichetti, one of America’s most important composers. “Symphony," which pointed the way for other composers of various genres to the serious musical possibilities of the wind band, explores in rich detail the timbral and rhythmic elements capable of the band genre in a work now considered core repertoire.

Christopher Jones, graduate conducting assistant, will make his final conducting appearance with the Wind Symphony with John Adams' “Short Ride in a Fast Machine.” This rhythmic transcription of the popular minimalist orchestral work takes the listener on a careening, yet exhilarating, musical journey.

Then, it will be time for The World’s Greatest Conductor: Maestro Hil Arioso. Maestro Arioso -- played to humorous perfection by EIU Wind Symphony conductor Milton Allen -- follows in the tradition of Danny Kaye, Victor Borge and Leonard Bernstein’s popular television broadcasts of the 1950s and '60s.

Equally at home conducting bands or orchestras, as well as presenting programs that appeal to all ages, Maestro Arioso brings fun, laughter and passion to the concert hall, all while illuminating both the importance and power of music to audiences.

Joining The Maestro during his “residency” will be Magie Smith, EIU clarinet professor, in a performance of the clarinet classic “Immer Kleiner” ("Always Smaller") by Adolf Shreiner.

Interim Dean of the College of Humanities, Jeffrey Lynch, will reprise his role as narrator for the Wind Symphony’s annual performance of “Casey at the Bat.” This will be Lynch’s last performance as a member of the EIU faculty.

The EIU Wind Symphony -- composed of approximately 45 auditioned musicians from across campus -- is the premier band of the EIU University Bands. It has received praise from many composers and artists, including Libby Larsen, the Boston Brass, Steven Bryant and Timothy Mahr, as well as conductors Russel Mikkelson and Timothy Reynish.

Admission will be $5 for the general public, and $3 for senior citizens, EIU employees and students. For tickets and information, or to arrange accommodations for persons with special needs, contact Doudna Fine Arts Patron Services (217-581-3110 or or visit the Doudna Fine Arts Center Box Office.

The Doudna Fine Arts Center is a division of the EIU College of Arts and Humanities. For more information, please see



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Media Relations
Josh Reinhart, Public Information Coordinator

2142 Old Main
Eastern Illinois University
600 Lincoln Ave.
Charleston, IL 61920
Fax: 217-581-8444

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