Performances of three prominent, full-time brass chamber ensembles (the Canadian Brass, Mnozil Brass, and Trompettes de Lyon), are studied for their inclusion of entertainment outside the bounds of traditional music performance. The various additions include acting, choreography, novel changes in instrumentation, props, technical exhibitions, audience interaction, and inherently humorous arrangements. These are identified, categorized, and analyzed for frequency of use. Representative scenes from each ensemble are compared for similarities with the intent of establishing general rules for the usage of each non-traditional element. Differences in overall show structure, compared to that of traditional chamber ensembles, are also discussed.
In a separate component of this project, the author wrote an original show based on the above research, and performed it with the Grand Valley State University Faculty Brass Quintet. The process of creation and observations of rehearsal and performance settings are included in this document to guide the efforts of other prospective show-writers.