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Daniel Armistead

Newark, DE            

Daniel J. Armistead is a composer, arranger, and saxophonist in the greater Philadelphia area with a passion for creativity and performance. Over the course of his career, he has worked diligently with fellow musicians and colleagues alike to develop his compositional craft and mastery of the saxophone. Growing up, Daniel was exposed to music at an early age, with both parents being musicians, and through the start of his piano and saxophone lessons in the 1st and 4th grades. While attending the University of Delaware for his undergraduate degree in Music Composition, he studied with renowned teachers such as Todd Groves, Jennifer Barker, and James Ancona. He also performed in a variety of ensembles being the principle saxophonist in Symphonic and Pep Band, a regular soloist in the Jazz Band, and alto saxophone music section leader in the Marching Band. Although his primary instrument is the alto saxophone, he also has experience playing all types of saxophones, trumpet in his University’s Collegiate Band, and piano in his high school’s jazz band.

Having composed countless compositions and arrangements, Daniel has become proficient at writing for an assortment of styles. Many of his compositions implement elements of neo-romanticism and jazz, exploring numerous statements of minute motifs that develop and fuse throughout a piece. Many of these works have been premiered while attending the university through the composition studio’s Society of Composers’ concerts.  Additionally, he has also written for several types of ensembles ranging from small chamber pieces, choirs, marching bands, and even a full orchestra. Furthermore, he founded a new Saxophone Ensemble with the goal of conducting and writing music for the group during his senior year of college.

In May of 2018, Daniel obtained his undergraduate degree in Music Composition and minor in Music Management Studies from the University of Delaware. Since graduation, he has been composing daily, working full time in the music industry fulfilling several commissions, and even having one of his works premiered at Carnegie Hall in February of 2019. Daniel has additionally been involved with the Bluecoats Drum & Bugle Corps, acting as an administrative intern in their 2017 season, and more recently held the position of Associate Stage Manager for their 2nd place 2019 production: The Bluecoats.

 

Daniel currently is attending the University of Delaware, pursing his master’s degree in Music Composition before beginning his lifelong career as a composer and teacher.

The Acquisition – For Brass Choir

The Acquisiton was written during the fall of 2016. Showcasing the versatility of brass instruments, the piece encompasses a variety of brief phrases each geared towards this flexibility. Effects including the use of muted trumpets, piccolo trumpet, and flugelhorn are used as coloring effects throughout the piece and provide an appeal to the listener and a diversity in sound. Additionally, difficult techniques such as woodwind-like runs and double tonguing, in combination with constant rhythmic changes, keeps the piece driving forward.

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In the Midst of Desolation – For Symphony Orchestra

The main source of inspiration for In the Midst of Desolation arose primarily from famous 20th century English poet, Robert Laurence Binyon’s poem, For the Fallen. The poem was written in mid-September 1914, just after the outbreak of the First World War, and describes not only the psychological effect instilled in people, but its impact on all of England.

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Shalom Aleichem – For Violin, Erhu (Optl. Violin II), Piano, & SATB Choir

Shalom Aleichem is a Jewish liturgical song composed by Israel Goldfarb in 1918 that is sung every Friday to mark the eve of the Sabbath. Translated from Hebrew as “peace be upon you”. This iteration of the piece was commissioned by 6-Wire of the University of Delaware Master Players Concert Series for performance with the University of Delaware Chorale at Carnegie Hall, New York, February 16th, 2019.

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