Archival Photo courtesy of UNM Libraries' Center for Southwest Research
The UNM Robb Musical Trust presented a concert of music composed by John Donald Robb in celebration of the Trust's 20th Anniversary and in tribute to the Robbs on Sunday, April 19, at 3:00 p.m. in the recital hall of the Robertson & Sons Violin Shop, 3201 Carlisle NE. A reception followed the performances. The UNM John Donald Robb Musical Trust was established at the University of New Mexico (UNM) in 1989 by John D. and Harriet Robb.
The program included the premiere of Robb's Quintet for Piano and Strings, Piers the Plowman for Narrators and Woodwind Ensemble, selected piano pieces, and a group of songs.
The "all Robb" program is thought to be a first for New Mexico and followed on the heels of an October 2008 presentation by the University of Missouri-St. Louis of a "John Donald Robb Tribute Concert" in the Blanche M. Touhill Performing Arts Center in St. Louis to a standing room only audience.
Performers included The Chamisa Quintet (Megan Holland, Nicolle Maniaci, Cherokee Reynolds, James Holland and Michael Bowen); Javier Ortiz, baritone; Tatiana Vertrinskaya, pianist; Robert Tillotson, clarinetist; Leslie Shultis, bassoonist; Niels Galloway, hornist; James Bratcher, pianist; with Catherine Haun and Rick Huff, narrators. Robb served as Dean of the UNM College of Fine Arts from 1942-57 and was responsible for starting the UNM Symphony, as well as many other educational initiatives. He composed an impressive body of work including symphonies, concertos, sonatas, chamber and other instrumental music, choral works, songs and arrangements of folk songs, two operas, a musical comedy, and more than 65 electronic works.