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PLAY / SING / DANCE with the Elegant Savages Orchestra in Spring 2024

PLAY / SING / DANCE with the TTU Celtic Ensemble & Elegant Savages Orchestra in Spring 2024 

The TTU Celtic Ensemble is recruiting for Spring 2024! Seeking singers, players, dancers, cosplayers, gamers, coders, LARPers, actors, and denizens of the High, Middle, and Lower Realms!


MUEN 3110 – 204 (36265) / Grad section MUEN 5110 – 204 (36338)


Open to participants from across the TTU campus

ACTIVE ALLIES to LGBTQIA, AAPI, BIPOC, women-identifying, and related minoritized communities: the TTU Celtic Ensemble & Elegant Savages Orchestra wants YOU!


Join the Imagineering Committee to help shape the Bassanda Universe

Join the Inclusivity Caucus to maximize engagement, rights, and respects for all people


See “The Elegant Savages Orchestra”




The TTU Celtic Ensemble (; Facebook: is a “folk orchestra” of singers, players, and dancers dedicated to exploring the dance music & song of the Seven Celtic Nations (Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Brittany, Cornwall, Galicia, and the Isle of Man), North Europe (France, Spain, Scandinavia), and related traditions. All band, orchestra, and folk instruments and voice-types welcome. Many opportunities for soloes, chamber pieces, and orchestral tuttis.


The Celtic Ensemble concertizes, tours, and participates in collaborative events throughout the academic year (dances, theatrical shows, film scores, etc). Members are encouraged to explore both primary and secondary skills (other instruments, song, dance, etc) and some traditional instruments are available for loan and learning. The CE also works closely with other Vernacular Music Center Ensembles and with partnered performance and arts organizations throughout the region.


Recent concert performance:

PBS television special:


The Elegant Savages Orchestra: Symphonic folk from a lost world


Major inspiration for the Elegant Savages Orchestra, the “big band” version of the TTU Celtic Ensemble, comes from the fictional country of “Bassanda,” a creation of Taos-based musicians and VMC partners Chipper Thompson ( and Roger Landes (, who for purposes of our January 2014 debut assumed their Bassanda personae (“The Rev” and “The General”) as guest performers. We imagined the fictional “Elegant Savages Orchestra,” in which, as part of an “alternate-history” frame, it’s alleged that a Soviet satellite’s official state folkloric ensemble (the “Bassanda National Radio Orchestra”) mutates, after the fall of Communism, into a free-lance ensemble engaged in a Never-Ending Tour.


The BNRO/ESO has thus been heard in many permutations and with widely variegated personnel, including “The Classic 1952 Band,” “The 1962 ‘Beatnik’ Band” (which nearly appeared on the cover of Life magazine under the headline “New Currents from Behind the Iron Curtain”), “The 1965 Newport Folk Festival Band,” who helped jump-start Bob Dylan’s notorious switch from acoustic folk to electric rock & roll, “The Mysterious 1885 Victorian “Steampunk” Band, “The Post-Apocalyptic ‘Desert Pirates’ Band,” “The 1912 New Orleans Creole “Voodoo” Band,” the “1928 ‘Carnivale Incognito’ Band,” the 1934 “Intergalactic Pandemic Popular Front Band,” “The 1936 International Brigade Libertarias Band,”

“The 1942 CASABLANCA Band,” and, coming in 2024, “The 1948 Berlin Noir Band.”


Director: Dr Christopher J Smith


A series of short films featuring the ESO:


Rehearsals and performances at TTU SOM (LBK campus): face-to-face, socially-distanced.


First tutti rehearsal Sunday January 14 5-7pm room M011 (“Band Hall”) in the TTU School of Music


Admission by interview/audition.


Contact Dr Smith ( for more information.


Chris Smith


School of Music

Event Information
Time: 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Event Date: 1/14/2024

M011 Band Hall SOM