By: Brooke Curley
SAFFORD – In addition to its jaw-dropping show at the David M. Player Center For the Arts, the Ocotillo Winds ensemble gave multiple performances around the Gila Valley for the youth and public. If you weren’t lucky enough to view the woodwind ensemble at the David M. Player Center For the Arts, you may have been able to catch a performance earlier on Wednesday at the Safford Library.
The Safford City-Graham County Library opened its main area to the Ocotillo Winds on Wednesday. Partnering with the Gila Valley Arts Council, the ensemble stopped by the library and performed a wide variety of melodies. The Ocotillo Winds also performed a variety of musical numbers including Renaissance-period pieces, arrangements from the 1940s and even a musical number created by one of the members of the group.
The ensemble is made up of a group of Arizona State University (ASU) professors who travel around the state teaching children at schools and performing for the public. Having already stopped at a Safford and Thatcher schools before the library performance, they ensemble was scheduled to visit two more the next day.
Christopher Creviston, who is a saxophone teacher at ASU, described the group’s touring schedule.
“Two today and two more tomorrow,” Creviston said. “It’s great timing; the kids seem really receptive. (There are) good kids here. We tour with several different groups, and we tour as soloists as well.”
Library Director Leanne McElroy expressed her joy at having the musicians perform at the library.
“It was a wonderful gift that was given to us,” she said. “It’s just another example of libraries are not just books. We’re here to educate and entertain and inspire the people in this community by giving them the things they enjoy, and live music is one of our favorites. We’re glad to have them here. This way I get a sneak peak of what the kids get to see tomorrow, so thank you friends, and thank you Gila Valley Arts Council.”