Sonic Soundscapes

Greetings Friends of TPWO,


It goes without saying that what we have experienced these past 8 weeks is something that none of us could have predicted or even imagined. The nation, as well as the state of Minnesota, implemented a quick and appropriate response to the COVID-19 outbreak but we had no idea what the consequences would mean for so many people in our country and throughout the world. It happened so fast that all of us had little time to prepare for the new ways in which we were going to have to live out our daily lives. I couldn’t have predicted that we’d have to cancel so many events, shelter in place, adapt to social distancing, try to work from home, wear face masks, not go to church or even tune in to church but go “online” and find your service on a social media site! The list of things we have had to adapt to goes on and on. But as inconvenient as all this has been, most of us have been able to keep moving ahead, keep somewhat sane, make progress or at least maintain what is important to us, and in some cases, many of us have learned to operate in a new way.


It is, though, unfortunate that so many meaningful events were canceled, especially the music events. I have missed so very much making music with all of the wonderful people I am privileged to work with on a daily basis. I also speak for the TPWO Membership in that I think we all have all missed the rehearsals and especially the performances. WHY?  Well, we are musicians and our discipline, is what we call, “The Performing Arts.” We all love music and making music and as performing musicians, we need to present our music in live concerts for others. This is because it is the performance of the music that completes the reason for our hard work. We musicians have the need and the want to share what we have learned and experienced, in large part, by performing it for others. You see…WE NEED TO PERFORM FOR YOU!!!  Our reward of what we have prepared with so much care and detail is based on the response of YOU, our audience members, who so graciously receive the gift of our music-making. It is that recognition of a job well done that helps validate the hard work we have put into the preparation of the music. Also, it is the look of the Joy and Excitement on the faces of the audience that gives us so much happiness. It is one of the reasons we do it again and again. The TPWO membership have all have missed that aspect of music-making and we look forward to resuming rehearsals and the performances of our concerts so we can again perform for you!


Having said all that, I am sending this message to let you know that the TPWO board met last week and it was decided that it would be the best decision to cancel the remainder of the 2019-2020 season and begin to make plans and prepare for the 2020 – 2021 season. We are all very disappointed and there are many reasons the decision went the way it did. Besides the fact that the board really does not know how long sheltering in place orders or social distancing will be in effect, we had to face the fact that even if these orders and recommendations were lifted, we would need to find new venues for performances and risk the possibility that many of our audience members and TPWO members would not feel comfortable attending a concert this close to the crisis. There were just too many uncertainties. We do hope that this crisis will soon pass and all of us can begin to put our everyday lives and activities back together again.


In closing, I would like to thank all of the amazing audience members who over the years have attended our concerts and supported us so that TPWO could present some of the finest concerts in the Northland for one of the greatest audiences in the Northland! We are very grateful to you.


I wish all of you a wonderful, productive summer and look forward to seeing all of you back attending our concerts next year as the Twin Ports Wind Orchestra makes GREAT music in the Northland.


Please be safe and well.



Dr. Mark Whitlock

TPWO, Music Director and Conductor

Head, UMD Music Department

Director of Bands

University of Minnesota Duluth


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