Our History

Altius Group Shot 2013Altius Brass was formed in 1995 by members of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra and freelance musicians from the Calgary area. Since then, the group has continued to strive to live up to its mandate as "Calgary's Premiere Large Brass Ensemble". Altius Brass performs three concerts per season in Calgary, as well as concerts in Canmore, Red Deer, Edmonton, Lethbridge and Lacombe.

Altius Brass borrows its name from the Olympic motto: Citius, Altius, Fortius (faster, higher, stronger). This name represents the commitment of its members to continual improvement and development, both at the individual and ensemble levels.

Throughout its history, Altius Brass has collaborated with a diverse group of artists, ranging from world-renowned soloists, to choirs, to visual artists and poets. These include Vincent Cichowicz, James Thomson, Paul Plunkett, Alan Muirhead and David Hoyt.

Altius Brass was invited by Jens Lindemann to participate in the International Trumpet Guild Conference in Banff, Alberta in June 2008. This included performing in concert with Allen Vizzutti, Ryan Anthony and the WonderBrass quintet, and fourteen principal trumpet players from the major Canadian orchestras. Previously, Altius Brass has been hired to perform as a part of the Red Deer Symphony Orchestra's concert series, the Vic Lewis International Band Festival, and Alberta's Centennial Choral Celebration 2005.

Altius Brass actively seeks to perform and commission works for brass by Canadian composers. Several works have been written for the ensemble by renowned composers such as Allen Rae, Keon Birney and Paul Plunkett, who composed "Meditation on Bach" for the group. Altius Brass also commissioned an arrangement of "O Canada" by Darren Fung.