POHLAND, JOEL (b. 1992)

Composer Joel Pohland (born June 9, 1992, Glencoe, Minnesota) has been immersed in music having been born to musical parents. He began piano lessons in 1st grade, and later on became part of his local church youth choir. In 5th grade, he began playing the Euphonium which became his strong suit. The family moved to Dubuque, Iowa, in 2009, when his father joined the Loras College Music Faculty.
Joel attended Loras College (2010-2014) and was an active member of the Wind Ensemble, Jazz Ensemble, and was president of the Loras College Drumline. Trombone and Drum Set became his major instruments. Community musical involvement included playing in the pit orchestra for the Rising Star Theatre Company in Dubuque. In 2014, Joel Pohland graduated as a music education major from Loras College where he was prepared to fulfill his dream of becoming a high school band director. He is now the band director of Pierz Healy High School Band in Pierz, Minnesota.
His philosophy for composing has been one that has changed and expanded since he began composing early in his life. For him, the wind ensemble offers a unique sense of variety and endless possibilities of colors and sounds. Since every instrument brings a unique feature to the ensemble, he tries to use its strength and/or showcase it in the composition. Doing so allows the work to expand into an engaging and wonderful aural experience.
Having experienced the use of an arrangement of one of his favorite hymns used as a meditation piece during a church service, he was inspired to do something similar for his orchestration class taught by his father, Glenn Pohland. Hence Ultimate Promise was conceived and composed as variations on a theme. An old sea shanty provided inspiration for his second band work, A Sailor's Odyssey.