In the past few months, Richmond-based trumpet virtuoso Rex Richardson has been pinballing around the world. There have been concerts in Russia, Tokyo, Melbourne, and the United Kingdom, a youth program in Uganda, as well as featured events across the country.
His new CD, “Freedom of Movement: 21st Century Trumpet Concertos,” featuring compositions from major modern composers leveraging Richardson’s astonishing technique, has been garnering critical praise. And he brings it all home for a free performance at Virginia Commonwealth University on Monday night.
Richardson’s singular ability to precisely manipulate the vibration of air in a short length of metal tubing is an extraordinary feat of focused athleticism. VCU trumpet professor Dr. Taylor Barnett has described his facility in playing fiendishly difficult passages as "Crazy target practice … like always hitting the bull's-eye on a moving target while doing jumping jacks."
The program, titled “Trumpet Spectacular,” also features Barnett along with fellow trumpeter University of Richmond professor/jazz music director/Latin music champion Mike Davison and the VCU Trumpet Ensemble. Magda Adamek and Russell Wilson provide piano accompaniment.
There are few opportunities to experience playing on Richardson’s level. Fewer still are free.
Trumpet Spectacular takes place Monday, Nov. 5 at 7 p.m. at Sonia Vlacecvic Concert Hall, W.E. Singleton Center for the Performing Arts, 922 Park Avenue, Richmond VA. Free admission.