What a privilege it is to welcome back to the show Justin Bland! I got to chat with Justin in the summer of '21 and was excited to book him for another interview. Justin is a truly world-class performer and teacher in all things trumpet, particularly baroque trumpet.
-Why James Newcomb conscientiously objects to the use of the word "podcast" to describe this show
-Justin Bland's most influential teachers
-Tales of arranging for trumpet ensembles
-"Misshapen pearls": An impromptu masterclass on trumpet history
-How Justin vets potential participants for a music festival he directs in Denmark
-And much more...
About the guest:
Applauded for his “gleaming trumpet work” (Hyde Park Herald) and “dazzling virtuosity” (GrunionGazette), the American trumpeter Justin Bland is a versatile musician, performing on both historical and modern trumpets. He specializes in early music, most notably in difficult high-register music for Baroque trumpet; for example, he has played Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 with groups in Denmark, Germany, Portugal, Sweden, Spain, the USA, Canada, Serbia, and Colombia. Before formally studying Baroque trumpet, Justin won first prize in multiple historical instruments divisions of the National Trumpet Competition. As a highly sought-after solo/principal Baroque trumpeter, Dr. Bland has performed with several leading early music ensembles throughout North America including American Bach Soloists, Apollo’s Fire, Washington Bach Consort, Tempesta di Mare, Musica Angelica, Scaramella, Bach Collegium San Diego, Lyra Baroque Orchestra, and many others. He has also played in South America with Ensamble Barroco de Bogotá.
Now living in Denmark, Justin continues to perform as both a soloist and ensemble musician, combining ongoing North American engagements with new collaborations with leading Baroque ensembles in Denmark as well as in the rest of Scandinavia and Europe. In Europe he has played with Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, Les Arts Florissants, Camerata Øresund, Barokksolistene, Arte dei Suonatori, Göteborg Baroque, ensemble Paulus Barokk, Orkester Nord (previously known as Trondheim Barokk), Göttinger Barockorchester, TSO Tidlig (the early music band of the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra & Opera), Wrocław Baroque Ensemble, New Trinity Baroque, Höör Barock, Enghave Barok, BaroqueAros, Copenhagen Soloists, the Næstved Early Music Festival, Ensemble Hven, and several others.
As a modern trumpeter, Justin has experience performing in orchestras, wind ensembles, jazz ensembles, pit orchestras for opera and musical theater, British brass bands, and numerous chamber ensembles. Before beginning his college career, he was principal trumpeter of the DC Youth Orchestra and had the opportunity to tour Japan as a trumpet soloist. He also performed regularly with the Prince George’s Philharmonic while in high school. More recently, he as appeared as a soloist with the South Dakota Symphony, the Firelands Symphony, and the Las Vegas Sinfonietta.
In addition to being a trumpeter, Justin is also a countertenor and has sung with Apollo’s Fire and Opera Cleveland. While in Ohio working on his Master’s degree, he was an alto section leader in the chamber and chancel choirs at Trinity Cathedral in downtown Cleveland and was the countertenor with Cantores Cleveland (now Contrapunctus). Justin also plays recorder.
Justin earned his DMA in trumpet performance from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He received his MA in early music performance practices from Case Western and his BM in trumpet performance from the University of Maryland. His primary trumpet teachers include Chris Gekker, Barry Bauguess, Steven Hendrickson, Steven Trinkle, and Justin Emerich. He has studied voice with Delores Zeigler, Ellen Hargis, and Aaron Sheehan. As a graduate assistant, Justin taught courses in ear training and music appreciation, and was a harpsichord tuner.