Striking. Daring. Canadian. With four decades under their belts, Canadian Brass continues to thrill audiences around the world, and they are heading to The Purchase PAC with their one-of-its kind holiday show on December 15. In advance of their arrival, we asked trumpet player Brandon Ridenour a few questions. Find out what makes them stand out, what “The Canuckracker” is, and more…

Q: What makes Canadian Brass stand out from other ensembles?
A: Our white shoes (offset by black trousers. Striking. Daring. Canadian.)

Q: What can audiences expect from holiday show?
A: Definitely a wide variety of classical, jazz, and holiday themed music. On that note, We have a brand new piece based on the music and story of The Nutcracker, set in, of course…Canada. It’s called “The Canuckracker”. We noticed there is a striking resemblance between a traditional Nutcracker and a Canadian Mountie. We’ll explain what all of this means and go into greater detail in the show. Yes we’re sure you have questions and they’ll all be answered if you come on by to hear us tell the “legendary” Canadian tale of “The Canuckracker”.

Q: What is your favorite song to perform as a group?
A: There are 5 us and we can never agree on one song. So we have to go with our default answer: anything Bach.

Q: How many hours a week do you practice?
A: 102 hours per week. Then you have to divide that by 5 people. 20.4 hours per person per week. Then you have to subtract time for sips of coffee…more like 17.2 hours per week. Accidentally looking at your phone… down to 13 hours per week. Then does group practice count? If so add an average of 10 hours per week to the remainder, minus time for group coffee runs. Disclaimer: Results may vary person to person.

Q: Do you have any advice for aspiring brass musicians?
A: Have fun. Enjoy the music. Stay inspired. Don’t forget to breathe 🙂

For tickets to see Canadian Brass at The Performing Arts Center, Purchase College on Sunday, December 15 at 7pm, call the box office at 914-251-6200 or visit