Minneapolis Trombone Choir

Jim tenBensel conducts the Minneapolis Trombone Choir.

The Minneapolis Trombone Choir performed Sunday, February 24, 2002, in the sanctuary of Judson Memorial Baptist Church.

Hear the Minneapolis Trombone Choir play Glen Newton's composition, "Brown Wore Black".

John, Glen, and Doug play tenor trombones; Don plays bass trombone. For one of the musical selections on the 2001 concert, John Metcalfe, Glen Newton, Doug Berg-Williams, and Don Dresser formed a featured trombone quartet that played passages in contrast with the full sound of the rest of the choir.

The Minneapolis Trombone Choir was started in 1974 and has been going strong ever since. Besides their annual concert, held the last Sunday in February, the group has performed at many special functions. Highlights include performing at Sommerfest at Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis, the Lake Harriet Bandshell, the Minnesota State Fair grounds, and the 1994 International Trombone Association workshop held at the University of Minnesota.

Under the leadership of Jim tenBensel, the Minneapolis Trombone Choir performs its annual concerts at Judson Memorial Baptist Church, 4101 Harriet Avenue South, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Proceeds from the concerts go to the social justice ministries of the church.

Jim tenBensel gave the Minneapolis Trombone Choir a cutoff during their February, 2000, concert.
Jim tenBensel
Three members of the trombone choir play in the left balcony while others play in the balcony opposite them. A typical concert has three parts: spiritual music, classical or "serious" music, and jazz and popular music, and includes guest performers, such as the St. Olaf College Trombone Choir, the Twin Cities Horn Club, the Jefferson High School Trombone Choir, or narrator George Burbie. The variety of music performed often includes the full trombone family, soprano, alto, tenor and bass (and sometimes contrabass) trombone; divided choirs of trombonists, often playing in the balconies, as shown here; some vocal component, such as Jim's solo on "When the Saints Go Marching In" on the 2002 concert; occasional use of other low brass for tonal variety; and accompaniment by a combo on the jazz and popular pieces.

The group has performed compositions and arrangements by Glen Newton and Roseville Big Band trombonist Mike Bratlie.

Shown below, the choir performed David Uber's "Collage" with trombones and a euphonium/tuba sextet on the 2002 concert.

The trombone choir achieves tonal variety with euphoniums and a tuba.

The euphonium players in the front row above are (left to right) Lee Dummer, John Metcalfe, Glen Newton, Hans Arlton, and Jim tenBensel. Tubist Chuck Wazanowski is at the end of the row. James Holdman conducts.

Trombonists in the middle row (left to right): Steve Sopoci, Chris Fulton, Steve Crumley, Don Lehnhoff, Randy Kline, Rich Eyman, and Doug Berg-Williams.

Trombonist Doug Martin is at the left in the third row. (Trombonists Leon Dill and Carl Sandberg, who can be seen in the top picture separated by Hans Arlton, are at the left outside this picture.) To his left are bass trombonists Andy Peik, Steve Devich, Mike Scott, Dave Dahlgren, Chuck Dodson, Don Dresser, and Doug Rowe. Guitarist Wally Walstad (who didn't play on "Collage") stands behind Andy.