Spotlight: Wright Brass Quintet to perform at IU East on Oct. 19

 Photo provided by U.S.A.F. Band of Flight

Wright Brass Quintet

Master Sgt. Michael Richter has what he thinks are the best jobs in the world.

And those jobs will connect in a special way in Vivian Auditorium on Monday, October 19.

Richter has served since 2012 as a part-time trumpet instructor at IU East.

His full-time job is as a player and master sergeant in the U.S. Air Force.

“I feel I have the best job in the Air Force. We get to go out into the community,” he says. “We get to tell the Air Force story and play great music.”

Richter will perform with the Wright Brass Quintet in a concert that’s free and open to the public. It is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.

“You can just show up. We will play a wide variety of music,” he says, including classical in the first half and pop in the second half of the 90-minute show. “We will play all of the service songs and give veterans a chance to stand up and be recognized.”

He looks forward to playing in Vivian Auditorium. “I often teach my lessons in that very spot,” he says. “I played with my students in a recital last school year. It’s going to be real fun. We don’t get that many opportunities to get into Indiana.”

Jessica Raposo, assistant professor of music at IU East, is grateful for that opportunity in many ways.

“Mike Richter has been a valuable member of our music program for several years now, and has the respect of both his students and his colleagues,” Raposo said. “We are so excited that he and the Wright Brass are coming to IU East, both so that our Richmond community can hear them play, but also so our campus community can share a bit of the life of their professor and colleague.”

The quintet is made up of players in the U.S. Air Force Band of Flight that’s based out of Wright-Patterson in Dayton, Ohio. It offers “a brassy blend of sound, style, and humor … for audiences of all ages,” according to Air Force materials. “The band’s purpose is to support the Air Force mission in war and peace by providing professional musical products and services for troop morale, recruiting, and community relations events.”

For more information about the Band of Flight, visit

Richter lives in Dayton with his wife and two young children.

He grew up on Long Island, N.Y., and graduated from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pa., before auditioning for and then joining the Air Force in 2001. “Bandsmen go through basic training, just like anyone else,” he says.

He was stationed in Georgia and Germany before coming to Dayton four years ago.

Soon after, he started teaching part-time at Earlham College and IU East. He heard about the opportunities through a previous band member.

“They are small music programs at both places,” Richter says. “I really enjoy coming over and working with the students.”

Other performers in the quintet include Tech. Sgt. Cheryl Przytula on trumpet, Staff Sgt. Renee Parcell on horn, Senior Airman Ainsley Davis on trombone, Airman 1st Class Justis MacKenzie on tuba and Airman 1st Class Chris Hanson on drums. Parcell also has taught at IU East.

“We are excited to play there,” Richter said. “This is one of the most versatile bands you can have. It will be a lot of fun for everyone.”