The Luther College Brass Ensembles include the Brass Choir, Horn Choir, Trumpet Ensemble, Trombone Choir, Trombone Ensemble, and Tuba/Euphonium Ensemble. Students may also participate in the following smaller ensembles: brass quintets, trombone quartets, and and tuba/euphonium quartets. Repertoire is selected from six centuries of musical resources including transcriptions and original compositions. The ensembles perform one major concert per semester, as well as other on-campus or off-campus performances throughout the academic year. Participation is open to all brass musicians with appropriate performance skills. Students normally register for MUS 273 for these ensembles.
The Tuba/Euphonium Ensemble and Trombone Ensembles are conducted by Michael Smith, the Trumpet Ensemble by John Cord, and Horn Choir by Rebecca Boehm Shaffer.
Jazz Combos at Luther College offer students the opportunity to develop jazz performance skills through the study of improvisation, interaction, and rhythmic and time feel in the context of small groups. Listening and analysis of essential repertoire and recordings from the history of jazz is central. Combo students learn how to perform in a jam session environment while also expanding capabilities for arranging and composition. An emphasis is placed on individual expression, group identity, and collaborative acumen in the pursuit of swinging, soulful music making.
Combos are formed by the students at the beginning of each semester and coached weekly by Jon Ailabouni. Each group is expected to perform at least two times during the semester. Students at every stage of learning participate in the combo program. Every semester, a variety of combos emerge with a range of experience levels and aesthetic priorities.
Luther Ringers is an auditioned ensemble with students drawn from all classes and all majors. The ensemble rings six octaves of Schulmerich Handbells and six octaves of Malmark Handchimes. In addition, Luther owns a set of Whitechapel English Handbells, a set of Petit & Fritsen “Flemish” style handbells, a set of Schulmerich silver melody bells, a Schulmerich bell tree and additional chimes and rhythm instruments used in handbell music. In addition to chapel and community performances, the Luther Ringers prepare their own concert in the spring semester and take part in the annual Christmas at Luther concerts each December.
The Luther Ringers will be on hiatus during the 2022-2022 school year