An army of music
Event: U.S. Army Field Band
When: 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 1
Where: Summit High School
FARMER’S KORNER – Uncle Sam wants you – to play the trumpet?
The U.S. Army Concert Band and the Soldiers’ Chorus will give 12 students from Summit High School a chance to play a patriotic march with them at a free concert Saturday, Nov. 1, at Summit High School.
“The students become honorary Field Band members,” said Staff Sgt. Jason Stephens said. “It gives some of the high school students a chance to play with a top-notch band. It puts a little fire under them and motivates them to do more with their music. If I had had an experience like that playing with a world-class ensemble, it would have given me more drive and devotion to music.”
Stephanie Texera, director of instrumental music at Summit High School, chose the 12 students based on seniority and musical ability.
Three seniors, Kimberlee Morse and Claire Taylor on clarinet and percussionist Mike Leone, join nine other freshmen, sophomores and juniors: Emily Adams and Andy Nease (on flutes), Schaulis Fike and David Samuels (oboes), Shun Sakaguchi (alto saxophone), Ty Harville (baritone sax), Kelsey Prim (French horn), Bryant Reinking (trumpet) and Catherine Clark (trombone).
“They’re really excited about it,” Texera said. “It is one of the most tremendous opportunities they’ll ever have because the U.S. Army is one of the best bands in the world. The Armed Services draw some of the best musicians in the world because of the good benefits they offer.
“Being very sheltered up here, we don’t get a chance to hear what a really good band sounds like, so this can help clue students in to what a good band sounds like and inspire them.”
The band will substitute the students for some of its own musicians for one of its standard military marches.
The concert begins with a patriotic prologue by various composers. It continues with classical music, “Something’s Coming” from “West Side Story,” and ends with John Philip Sousa’s “The Stars and Stripes Forever.”
Audience members – especially those who have served in the military – tend to respond proudly to the Service Medley, in which the band plays all of the Armed Forces songs and asks active and retired military members to stand when their song plays.
“They tend to play things that people are familiar with,” Texera said. “And their presence itself is pretty overwhelming.”
The band spends about 100 days a year touring the country to promote community relations. It divides the country into five areas, visiting each area every two and a half years.
Since its formation in 1946, the U.S. Army Field Band has performed in all 50 states and in more than 30 countries. The Concert Band and Soldiers’ Chorus comprise two of the four performing components of the U.S. Army Field Band.
The Concert Band is the oldest and largest of the Field Band’s four performing components. The 65-member instrumental ensemble has played for more than 100 million people.
It regularly performs with the Soldiers’ Chorus, a 29-member ensemble founded in 1957. The musical backgrounds of the Soldiers’ Chorus personnel range from opera and musical theater to music education and vocal coaching.
Both ensembles have performed joint concerts with many of the nation’s leading orchestras, including the Boston Pops, Cincinnati Pops and Detroit Symphony Orchestra.
The concert at Summit High School launches the second annual fall/winter concert series presented by the Breckenridge Music Festival (BMF) and Colorado Mountain College’s Center for Excellence in the Arts.
Though the concert is free, the BMF requires reservations by calling (970) 453-9142 by noon Friday, Oct. 31. The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 1.
Kimberly Nicoletti can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 245, or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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