Variations of Grace
For concert band
Variations of Grace was my first concert band composition that I ever got to hear played by a real band. I shared it with my band director, Dr. Jay W. Gilbert, and he agreed to rehearse it with the band. I had very little knowledge about composition and no training in the matter, so the original was rough. Luckily there were plenty of players willing to tell me about the notes that were impossible to play...
That first draft included a statement of Our Boys Will Shine Tonight - an odd song to match with Amazing Grace, but it is Doane's fight song, so I felt it would be nice to throw in. I've since edited the piece to put a more appropriate countermelody. The piece was premiered by the Symphonic Wind Ensemble at Doane College on October 16th, 2005.