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Bay Concert Band Opens Season

October 25, 2008       1 Comments
By: Stephen Kent

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The Bay Concert Band, also known as the "Second Wind", opened their season with a concert at Central High on Tuesday, October 21. The band played to a large and appreciative audience.

The program was opened by Master of Ceremonies Rande LaPrairie who came on stage dressed as Red Skelton's memorable character Clem Kadiddlehopper. Welcoming the audience, LaPrairie talked about the legendary comic's career including his 18 seasons on TV which ended with his final performance on April 29, 1969. That program was taped on location in Boston where Arthur Fiedler and The Boston Pops performed Skelton's composition "The Kadiddlehopper March".

Conductor David Kjellberg came to the stage to start the program with a tribute to the armed services. The band accompanied vocalist Robert Story in a medley of the anthems of each branch of the service. Veterans of each service were asked to stand as their anthem was sung.

The Pledge of Allegiance was recited followed by the national anthem then the concert began with the "Tenth Regiment March" by Robert Brown Hall, a virtuoso cornet player, bandmaster, composer. Written in 1895, the march was dedicated to the Tenth Regiment Band of Albany, New York.

The band went on to Play the "Polish Rhapsody for Band" followed by a beautiful arrangement of "Gabriel's Oboe" adapted for the Bay Concert Band by Abby Schwab with the oboe solo played by Jenny Schwab.

The oboe piece was followed by an arrangement of "I Whistle A Happy Tune" featuring the entire flute section. The first half of the concert ended with the lively "Kadiddlehopper March" as promised.

The second half featured the "Dunlap Commandery March", "The Heart of the Morn" and "A Cohan Broadway Festival", and W.C. Handy's wonderful "St. Louis Blues".

The band also performed "Sobre Las Olas (Over the Waves)" by Juventino Rosas. As Kjellberg said, the piece sounds very much like something Strauss would write. Although the full piece may not be familiar, one segment is very well known. Hear a version on YouTube

The Bay Concert Band, or "Second Wind" was founded in 1977 by Peg Rowley, Dr. James Fenton, Jim Griffiths, and Wally Cramer. They invited former band students who had graduated from high school to form a community band. The concept was a great success as witnessed by its thirty year history. Anyone, of any age and skill level is invited to play with the band. Rehearsals are Tuesdays at 7:15 pm in the Bay City Central High School band room. For information call David Kjellberg at (989) 846-4014.

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Stephen Kent

Steve Kent and his family have lived in Bay City for 40 years. He is VP of Technical Services at MMCC which produces MyBayCity.Com. Kent is active in many Bay City civic organizations.

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