Author: Becca Vaclavik

World-renowned quintet Canadian Brass brings holiday program to Boulder

World-renowned quintet Canadian Brass will perform its holiday program “Christmas Time is Here” in Macky on Monday, Dec. 17.

From “Bach’s Bells” to “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch,” it’s a program packed with popular seasonal standards. With custom arrangements created especially for Canadian Brass, the concert will also feature new and interesting takes on the classics that might surprise listeners.

“It’s going to be something the audience has never heard before,” said Canadian Brass hornist Jeff Nelsen. “Even if the song isn’t a surprise, there will be moments in the pieces that are. It will be a totally new sound for their ears.”

Nelsen appreciates the special connection all audiences have with holiday music.

“One of the greatest things about playing with Canadian Brass is that we start Christmas in late November, like most people,” said Nelsen. “But we get to celebrate it every night with different large groups of families. We get to feel that spirit each time. Like we’re truly making spirits shine bright every night.”

In its 47th season, the award-winning Canadian Brass is known for its fun, imaginative and lively style. That style is perhaps best personified in the players’ signature tuxedo and white sneaker ensembles.

Canadian Brass features five musicians: founder Chuck Daellenbach, tuba; Caleb Hudson and Christopher Coletti, trumpets; Achilles Liarmakopoulos, trombone; and Jeff Nelsen, horn. The members perform on 24-karat gold-plated Canadian Brass Collection instruments.

The quintet has performed in many of the world’s most famous concert halls, been seen by millions of people on television programs like “The Tonight Show” and “Sesame Street,” sold 2 million of its 100 albums worldwide, and contributed close to 600 new works and arrangements to the brass quintet repertoire.

The group’s global success and expertise have transformed Christmas music. Canadian Brass has brought a brass edge to a season typically associated with the sounds of bells and carolers.

“Canadian Brass is fundamentally the group that made the brass quintet sound mean Christmas,” said Nelsen. “The greatest thing for me is—all ages, all types of people with different careers and different interests and different personalities—I can fearlessly tell anyone, ‘Come to the concert. You will love it.’”