Category Archives: Press Release

Announcing our Spring Concert

Back to Basics ~ performing a pre-pandemic concert in a post-pandemic world.

Announcing our Spring Concert ~ performing a pre-pandemic concert in a post-pandemic world.

This year’s Spring Concert features a program that was planned two years ago, but was never performed. The subtitle of this concert is “Back to Basics”. Not only is the band playing a straight-forward wind ensemble concert with no obvious theme, but they’re also going back to performing a pre-pandemic concert in a post-pandemic world. 

Highlights of our upcoming concert include a piece by Percy Grainger called “Lincolnshire Posy”. Grainger was an interesting fellow and his music reflects that. He wanted music to reflect nature and have a free-flowing sense of time, which is why you’ll often hear lots of meter changes in his music. The second movement of “Lincolnshire Posy” is a great example of this free flow in time because the melody is not strictly in common time or a basic meter throughout the movement. 

Another highlight of this concert is a selection called “Alligator Alley” by Michael Daugherty. Daugherty is a modern day composer who incorporates pop culture into his music, such as “Dead Elvis” or “Metropolis Symphony” (the story of Superman). “Alligator Alley” is the nickname for a stretch of highway between Naples and Ft. Lauderdale in Florida’s Everglades National Park. Daugherty composed this music to celebrate the management of the National Park Service in preventing poachers from hunting alligators. Listen for the snap of the alligator from the whip player when you see this performance!

Announcing our Spring Concert ~ performing a pre-pandemic concert in a post-pandemic world.

One last piece of music I’d like to showcase is Shostakovich’s “Waltz No. 2”, which has been arranged for wind ensemble by Johan de Meij. You may have heard of this famous waltz in Kubrick’s movie “Eyes Wide Shut” or the holiday classic “Bad Santa”. It was composed as a part of Shostakovish’s “Suite for Variety Orchestra”. In the original orchestral version, it included alto saxophone, which is not an instrument that normally plays in orchestra. It’s great to hear Meij’s band arrangement because the sax part is now accompanied by wind instruments that match the tone quality of that instrument.

There are eight other pieces that will be performed for this year’s Spring Concert. Please come see our concert this May 1st at the Center for the Arts main stage at 4:30PM. 

Best,

Zach Singer


Related Images:

Halloween Concert 2019

2018

From The Conductor

I’m so excited for this year’s Halloween Concert! We’ll be playing one of the best narrated pieces written, “Peter and the Wolf” by Sergei Prokofiev. When deciding to add this to the program, I had to think of someone who was good enough to be the narrator. My first time performing “Peter and the Wolf” had special guest narrator Leonard Nimoy. You may remember
him as Mr. Spock in the television show Star Trek. His narration was awesome and inspiring. Finding someone on parr with Nimoy in Jackson was going to be a challenge. However, since I’ve asked KJAX’s very own radio DJ DelRay to narrate, I might have found someone to beat Nimoy’s performance. DelRay and I have done lots of radio interviews in the past few years and he is one of the most joyous and animating personalities in Jackson. A few days ago, I heard him speak a line of dialogue about Peter encountering the Wolf and it gave me chills. I’m so excited to have DelRay joining us this Saturday to narrate “Peter”. So excited, in fact, I might ask him to help me with another part of the show…

“Peter and the Wolf” will be a huge chunk of the program (15 minutes!). To compliment “Peter”, I programmed a medley of John Williams horror classics. Titled “Chillers and Thrillers”, this piece features such horrifying Williams music such as the theme from “Jaws”, Voldemort’s theme from
“Harry Potter”, music from the movie “War of the Worlds” (2005) and music from “Witches of Eastwick”. As a fan of Star Wars, “Chillers and Thrillers” also features the “Imperial March” from “The Empire Strikes Back”. Who else is excited to see the last installment of the Skywalker saga this Holiday season!?

Every Halloween concert, I like to have a piece that features a special effect or instrument. My first year was a piece with a water gong. Last year featured a piece with sound tubes. This year’s “special effects” driven piece is “Haunted Clocks” by Brian Balmages. This piece showcases the percussion and flute sections. From the first measure, we hear the steady
“tick-tock” of a clock, played by temple blocks. As the piece progresses, our steady timekeeper is disrupted by the sounds of more percussion and “cuckooing” flutes layering on top of each other to their own beat. It’s not until we hear the sounds of “Big Ben” coming from the chimes that music is forced to come back on track. It’s been a fun challenge asking both sections to not follow the conductor in our rehearsals.

This year is going to be awesome! I can feel it. The musicians are really enjoying the music. DelRay is fun! There’s already snow on the ground. This’ll be the best Halloween Concert yet!

Live long and prosper,
-Zach Singer

Costume Parade

Kids and kids at heart should show off their creative talents and come in costume as well. And be prepared, all goblins and ghouls will be welcomed on stage for the annual costume parade. Get those cameras ready! Be sure to tag your photos #JHCBand.

Trick or Treat

After our traditional Adams Family sing along, the little ghosts and goblins can retrieve candy from generous local businesses. Trick-or-Treat maps will be available at the concert, or return to this page for a list of participating businesses.

Poster PDF

Related Images:

A Night at the Movies: The Sequel!

Free Concert! 07:00 pm – Sunday, May 05, 2019 at the Center for the Arts

True Believers,

I can’t wait for Spring Concert this year! I’ve been itching to do a movie themed concert ever since I became the conductor of the community band. The last movie themed concert performed by the band was in 2016 with Jennifer Levanduski conducting. That concert featured such classics as “Officer Krupke” from “West Side Story”, the theme from “The Godfather” and music from “Tombstone”. Just like Hollywood, I wanted to do that concert again, but bigger! This concert features only music that has been found in movie sequels, hence the title of our concert, “A Night at the Movies: The Sequel!”

Click here to visit our YouTube Channel and Subscribe

All of the music selections feature music from movies that have sequels.  Movies like “Jurassic Park”, “Superman”, “Star Wars” and “Back to the Future” have many sequels and feature their main themes in all of them. Some of the more obscure movie sequels in our concert include “Blue Danube Waltz” from “2001: A Space Odyssey” and “Wizard of Oz”. Some might remember their respective sequels, “2010: The Year We Make Contact” and “Return to Oz”. “Return to Oz” might be one of my favorite sequels to a beloved classic because of it’s very dark tone and memorable scary moments. Some of our selections will feature themes that are only found in their sequels, such as “Yoda’s Theme” from “Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back” and music from “Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers”.

To celebrate our 30 year birthday we have invited our founding conductor, Don Cushman, to conduct a special piece.

This concert is going to be a blast! All of the musicians have been working real hard to bring the power of cinema to your ears. I can’t wait to see you at The Center Theater on Cinco De Mayo!

Excelsior!

-Zach

Continue reading A Night at the Movies: The Sequel!

Related Images: