The Spanish Trail Suite

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Film Score In Reverse Presents an Interactive Film Depicting the Beauty and History of America's  Spanish Trail.

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Press

"... As the music of the second half of the concert echoed the magical sonorities many listeners first experienced two years ago, all marveled at images included as part of a special new video enhancement for the Suite.

The imagery projected on screens above the orchestra was indeed haunting: mysterious Petroglyphs inscribed on red-rock cliffs; tortured branches silhouetted against an empty desert sky; a lonely falcon soaring in tireless vigil above a harsh landscape of cacti and mesquite.

But it was finally the marvelous music that carried the evening. From the plaintive sweetness of a Native American flute hailing the dawn to the sweet campfire serenade of a fiddler calling pioneer couples to dance, "The Spanish Trail Suite" wonderfully reflects the complex natural and human dynamics of the American Southwest..."
(excerpt from concert review by Bryce Christensen)

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Native Petroglyphs

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Map of Old Spanish Historic Trail

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Screen Shots from the High Definition Film

The Old Spanish Trail Filmed entirely on location in high- definition, this presentation includes magnificent flyovers and time-lapse photography that captures the awesome beauty of Southwestern Utah. The Old Spanish Trail was the longest and one of the oldest trails in the American West. It was 1120 miles long and took two and a half months to travel. From the sandstone to the mountain streams, the music and imagery guides you through its timeless wonders and sheds light on this little known American treasure.

History of the Trail

For 10,000 plus years

The trail was used by area tribes. It passed by areas such as Mesa Verde the home of Ancestral Puebloan cliff dwellings.

1519

Spanish conquest of Mexico

1769

Spanish establish San Diego in California.

1776

Fathers Escalante and Dominguez explore Utah and come through Cedar City.

1829

Spanish Trail used to transport horses, furs, wool, and slaves from Santa Fe to Los Angeles, 1120 miles with pack horses and mules taking 2 ½ months each way.

1848

America defeats Mexico and ends the period of the Old Spanish Trail.

1849

Mormon Battalion in California brings first wagon on Trail. Brigham Young asked for bulbs, cuttings, horses, grain, corn, and garden seeds "to feed the people and beautify Zion."

Present

Modern highways use much of the route of the Trail. Interstate 15 from Parowan to Cedar City is on the trail as is Las Vegas to Barstow and onto San Bernadino.

2002

Recognized by President Bush and the Congress as a National Trail, perhaps the oldest trail of the American West.

2005

Orchestra of Southern Utah commissions "Spanish Trail Suite" by Marshall McDonald and Steven S. Nelson.

2006

Premiere performance of the Suite with performance by local Paiute drum circle and dancers as prelude.

2007

Filming enhancement video by Video Ideas of Chattanooga, Tenneessee.

2008

April 10, premiere of video accompanying the music of the Spanish Trail Suite.

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The Composers

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Steven Sharp Nelson

         Steven Sharp Nelson began developing musical talents at a very early age. His first composition, for percussion ensemble, was written before he could even read music. His skills and interests stretch across all genres of music - most aptly in classical, cultural, folk, and improvisational music.

         He has written many pieces for a variety of instruments, and is most acclaimed for his works written for string orchestra and chorale. Among these works are “Farewell,” a piece written at age 15 performed by the Utah Symphony, and “Supplication,” an a cappella piece written for the memory of the victims of 9/11. Steven is no stranger to the stage and is also sought after by recording studios. He often performs improvisational cello with several independent artists and he has recorded on nearly 100 different albums. He was deemed “the best cellist in Utah” by FM100 and in 2004 he was nominated as the best studio musician of the year by the FCMA.

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Marshall McDonald

    Marshall McDonald is mainly known by his friends and family for three things: his music, his smile, and his love of chocolate milk. He graduated from the University of Utah in 2003 with BA degrees in Music and Communications and is now working toward his Masters in Public Administration.

He is currently a full-time Seminary and Institute teacher for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the director of the Sandy Institute Choir. He has been featured on over a dozen albums in the last 6 years. His most recent albums include: Sunday Morning Light, His Light Divine, I Am a Child of God- an album inspired by the artwork of Greg Olson, Favorite Hymns For The Sabbath, Our Savior's Love, and Christmas Dreams. He worked for a time for the WB network television series “Everwood” as a musician and hand double for the actor, Gregory Smith.

Performance Licensing- The Tools for Your Success

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Full Orchestral Score

The full score is an invaluable additional rehearsal tool that gives the conductor a complete view of the music for every instrument and singer in the show. No need to purchase additional music.

Also included is the Spanish Trail Suite score marked with all the cue points with thumbnails for visual reference for all the cues.

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The Software & DVDs

A Training DVD which contains all the movements being sequenced to the music. Allowing the user to watch the DVD, listen to the musical performance, and "sequence" the application on the backstage laptop as practice.

Also included is a "preview" DVD of the Spanish Trail Suite DVD as a POP, demonstrating all the bonus features and historical information presented in the retail DVD that you can sell on consignment in the lobby.

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Get In Touch

Extensive phone support for each performance and advice.
As well as any other support material needed to help publicize and market your performance.

If you are interested in licensing the Spanish Trail Suite, please contact Jerry Waddel at 423-894-2677 or jerryw@videoideas.com.

Contact Us
Own the DVD
  • Performed by  The Orchestra of Southern Utah
  • Special price $24.95 plus S&H
  • To order call 866-296-3423 or use PayPal

     Filmed entirely on location in high-definition, this presentation includes magnificent flyovers and time-lapse photography that captures the awesome beauty of Southwestern Utah. The Old Spanish Trail was the longest and one of the oldest trails in the American West. From the sandstone to the mountain streams, the music and imagery guides you through its timeless wonders and sheds light on this little known American treasure.

  • Commentary audio track with Col. Al Matheson, Old Spanish Trail Historian
  • "The Old Spanish Trail – An Historical Perspective" video
  • Interview with the composers Marshall McDonald and
  • Steven Sharp Nelson along with OSU conductor, Xun Sun
  • Slideshow of rarely seen petroglyphs, pictographs,
  • untouched landscapes and photographs from the 19th century
  • The making of the Spanish Trail Suite featurette
  • Trailers and Previews
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