Morden Sets Farewell Concert For Wednesday


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Max Morden is not, repeat not, retiring. He wants to make that as clear as one of his trumpet solos. “I’m just dropping out of school,” he says.

Whatever the change of status is called, Morden, who has taught music in Verona’s public schools for 35 years, is doing his final school concert on Wednesday, May 29. In true Morden fashion, it will be a showstopper. “I have composed a piece that, for the first time ever, will combine the elementary, middle and high school bands together for a performance,” Morden says. “There are 225 students involved.”

The concert begins at 7 p.m. and it will be held in the big gym at Verona High School. “There aren too many students to fit in the auditorium,” Morden says.

But, again, Max Morden is not, repeat not, retiring. He will still be doing Verona Summer Music and all the gigs that have been his signature over the years as a professional musician, from the Gramercy Brass Orchestra of New York, to the Oratorio Society of New Jersey orchestra, the Chico Mendoza Latin Jazztet, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, Solid Brass, Princeton Symphony Orchestra and the Latin Jazz Express. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Morden (above center) invited many of his fellow professional musicians to perform on his front lawn for free. And if you can’t catch up with his in-person appearance, Morden is a recording and arranging artist for the E1 Music record label.

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