Meizhou Bao

For concert band

Meizhou Bao was exciting for me to write. It was the first product of the Symphonic Composition Project, an annual project I do with my high school band in which they write music each week, and I take their ideas and mold them into a concert piece we perform in the spring.

As I was looking over the students' work, I found one that had written some of her excerpts in 3/4 and others in 4/4. None sounded great on their own, but I combined a couple measures from different exercises she wrote and got the main melody for Meizhou Bao. Once I had that main statement, the rest of the song came quickly. The students voted on the title of the piece, and ended on this one, which means "panther" in Mandarin. I've since learned that it is also the name of a Chinese tugboat and a Chinese action movie. It was premiered by the Fillmore Central High School Concert Band on May 12, 2009.