An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.


Sign up for the Marine Band newsletter HERE.

Photo Information

Chamber Music Series: April 7

Photo by Master Sgt. Brian Rust

2024 Chamber Music Series Concludes April 7

3 Apr 2024 | Master Sgt. Brian Rust United States Marine Band

The final concert of the 2024 Chamber Music Series will take place at 2 p.m., Sunday, April 7 with a program including several new works that feature the strings and highlight double bass in jazz and improv as well as traditional German chamber music. Coordinated by bassist Staff Sgt. Kevin Thompson, the performance will take place in John Philip Sousa Band Hall, online and in person at the Marine Barracks Annex in southeast Washington, D.C. 

Here’s what Thompson had to say: 

This program is a dedication to the unique position that bassists of “The President’s Own” inhabit. We must be proficient in many genres and styles of music while inhabiting many different ensembles, and I wanted this program to reflect that musical existence. It is both simple and complex in its presentation, and my hope is that the listeners can find themselves comfortably challenging their perceptions on what chamber music and the instruments involved are capable of. 

The program opens with a couple of movements from the duets of Dr. Nicholas Walker, who was my private teacher during my undergraduate studies at Ithaca College. Dr. Walker is fluent in many genres of music, and his writing often highlights the unique and unexpected voice of the double bass. I first heard Dr. Walker perform these duets my sophomore year at Ithaca, and I wanted to dedicate this outing to the tutelage and guidance he gave me. With floating harmonics, playful improvisation, and diverse rhythmic palette as the starting base, my hope is to give the audience a different perspective on the voice of the bass as the opening idea. 

Branching out from this, we move to the quirky work of Erwin Schulhoff’s “Concertino for Flute, Viola and Double Bass.” It seems a strange instrumentation, but this piece has a vitality and folksiness that I find fascinating. This piece contrasts the sweet tonality of the previous duets with more challenging harmony, and I think gives a solid contrast to the opening in a still small ensemble. I first performed this piece while attending The National Orchestral Institute at the University of Maryland. It was my first real chamber music experience, and I wanted to bring that familiarity with me to the stage. Then, to go from the familiar to the new, we will be premiering a new piece by my colleague, Staff Sgt. Tyler Lindsay. With a string quartet plus jazz piano trio, the mixture of genre, texture, rhythm and jazz harmony fully encompasses the worlds that we swing between in “The President’s Own.” 

After the intermission, the main highlight will return to more traditional chamber music. The dark, stormy music of Hermann Goetz’ Piano Quintet can reset the ear, bringing us back to more traditional chamber music while still showcasing the double bass in a way that many people likely have not heard. In order to not abandon the original thesis, however, we will finish on a fun note with Chick Corea’s “Armando’s Rhumba,” which will feature the improvisational skills of Master Sergeants Tam Tran on violin and Russell Wilson on piano, and I hope it will bring the program to a very fun and joyous conclusion. 


The concert is free and open to the public; no tickets are required. The Marine Barracks Annex is located at 1053 7th Street SE in Washington, DC, and free parking is available in the gated lot beneath the bridge on 7th Street. Please allow extra time for ID checks and security at the gate.