”I have been nothing but amazed by the ILBT’s ability to do so much with their group, both logistically and creatively, in such a short period of time. I have never seen an ensemble hit the ground running in such a big way – from concerts to arrangements to interesting and new commissions, I think you guys are a stunning example of just the right balance of entrepreneurial savvy and creative energy that the music world needs more of.”- Danny Clay, composer
Challenging perceptions, dissolving stereotypes, and generally rocking your world, ILBTrio leaves classical arrangements behind and immerses audiences in new music inspired by the resonance and versatility of brass instruments. Jeff Dittmer (horn, from London, Canada), Gabe Cruz (trombone, from Alameda, California), and Jess Rodda (tuba, from Mildura, Australia) formed ILBTrio in 2012 with the intention of focusing on 20th- and 21st-century music for brass. This focus on new music has lead them to collaborate with numerous composers; to date they’ve performed a US premiere, 2 West Coast premieres, and 16 world premieres.
In 2013 they launched a successful Indiegogo campaign to fundraise toward an international tour to Canada & Detroit, recording and publishing their first EP, and attending the 2014 Chamber Music America conference in New York. Their upcoming EP – The First Six, due to release on August 24th, 2014 – features original works written for ILBTrio by Nick Benavides, Danny Clay, Matthew Joseph Payne, Drew Phillips, Justin Rito, and Lillian Yee, as well as the piece that inspired the formation of ILBTrio: John Stevens’ Triangles. They’re currently working with 11 more young composers and will premiere these new works during their ‘14-15 season.
There are more videos on our YouTube Channel
Reviews & Mentions
07/22/13 Classical Revolution, 07/26/13 Novato, 09/22/13 St Marks, 09/28/13 Street Stage Popup, 10/14/13 Octubafest SFCM, 10/15/13 ILBTrio Recital SFCM, 11/15/13 Guerrilla Composers Guild, 12/17/13 London Ontario, 12/21/13 Riverside United, 01/05/2014 St Mary’s Michigan, 01/06/2014 University of Western Ontario
Jess Rodda, ILBTrio@gmail.com
Jeff Dittmer, Horn
Originally from London, Canada, Jeff Dittmer holds a Bachelor of Music from the Don Wright School of Music at the University of Western Ontario, where he was awarded the Gold Medal in Orchestral Instrument Performance in 2012. He was a finalist in the annual Maritsa Brooks Concerto Competition in 2011, and winner of the London Community Orchestra’s Young Soloists Competition in 2009. He is currently studying with San Francisco Symphony’s principal horn, Robert Ward, to complete a Masters degree at the SF Conservatory of Music.
Gabe Cruz is an active trombone soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral musician in his native Bay Area. His trio, The International Low Brass Trio, has premiered over 15 new works, and recently released their first album, The First Six. Gabe has performed with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra, and numerous other Bay Area ensembles, with which he has toured to Costa Rica, Argentina, Uruguay, Germany, Austria, Canada, and Luxenbourg.
Jess is an Australian tuba player who was exported to New Zealand in ’09 before being shipped to San Francisco in ’11. She loves surprising people with the lyrical beauty of the tuba, and charming children & adults alike with its occasional “farty” quality, and occasionally playing so soft that it would bring a tear to your eye, if only you could hear it. “I never knew the tuba could do that” is a comment frequently received at solo recitals and chamber music concerts alike.
Beginning in British style brass bands in the “middle of nowhere” Australia, Jess decided she wanted to play the euphonium after realising that the high register of the cornet just wasn’t for her. Unfortunately, the euphonium section was full and the other option was a tuba, which was so large that her mother forbade her from bringing home, citing the fact that it wouldn’t “fit in the car”. Obviously, she was never one to defy her mother, so she returned home with one the next week. Jess is in the process of wrapping up the addendum PSD degree which she chose to add on to her M.Mus from SFCM, finding that she couldn’t bear the prospect of leaving San Francisco, or leaving the tutelage of her tuba professor Peter Wahrhaftig.