FOR THE first time in seven years, UST Symphony Orchestra conductor played his instrument of choice, the euphonium, in “All About that Bass: #NoTreble,” a concert by Conservatory of Music students, last Feb. 7.

Herminigildo Ranera, professor at the Conservatory, showcased his ageless talent in playing the euphonium, a valve instrument resembling a tuba that produces a sweet-sounding bass.

Ranera said he was taught by his father to play the bass instrument when he was seven.

“One of the reasons why I agreed to play onstage after seven years is because this was a student’s initiative,” he said. “I really support and admire their perseverance.”

Ranera gave a rendition of songwriter Kevin Kadish and singer Meghan Trainor’s “All About that Bass,” the concert’s titular song.

Students from the symphonic instrumental performance department (string, percussion, woodwind and brass) prepared a repertoire emphasizing the bass clef, the sound one octave lower than written.

Their opening performance was German film composer Klaus Badelt’s “Pirates of the Carribean.”

Soulful tonal bass clef range followed as the bassoon department performed Stevie Wonder’s 1976 classic, “Isn’t She Lovely?”

Arranged by the orchestra’s principal cellist Glenn Aquias, “Tahimik na Lugar” brought the Valentine’s vibe on stage with a medley of original songs written by Silent Sanctuary such as “Ikaw Lamang” and “Kundiman.”

They also played “You’ve Got a Friend in Me” by Randy Newman with an arrangement for trombones and tube, and “Mancini Medley,” a playful piano forte piece with a strong and sudden soft tempo.

“The repertoire consisted of songs that complemented the deep sound of bass of each instrumental family,” orchestral conducting student Jedrick Itugot said. “The main purpose of this concert is to highlight the unity of different departments.”

Ranera graduated from the Conservatory of Music, majoring in Trombone and Theory.

Some of his mentors in conducting were Bernardino Custodo, Duilio Dubrin and Redentor Romero.

A multi-awarded conductor, Ranera won in the National Competition for Young Artist for three consecutive years in the 1980’s.


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