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United States Marine Band

Colonel Jason K. Fettig, Director
Unit News
Summer Concerts Feature Sousa, Clarinet Solo, and Movie Music

By Gunnery Sgt. Brian Rust | United States Marine Band | June 12, 2018

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The Marine Band’s evening summer concerts on the west steps of the U.S. Capitol continue this week with performances at 8 p.m., Wednesday, June 13 and Thursday, June 14, conducted by Assistant Director Capt. Ryan J. Nowlin who said, “This is a classic Marine Band concert filled with overtures, film music, a featured soloist, and of course the music of John Philip Sousa.” Both concerts are free and open to the public and no tickets are required.

 

In traditional Marine Band fashion, the concert will begin with a march, specifically John Philip Sousa’s “The Pathfinder of Panama.” The march was one of 12 composed by Sousa for various expositions or fairs and was dedicated to the Panama Canal and the Panama-Pacific Exposition held in San Francisco in 1915. The march was also recently recorded by the Marine Band as part of “The Complete Marches of John Philip Sousa” recording project, and is available for free download, including full score and parts. Click here to learn more.

 

The band will then perform several popular transcriptions for wind band including Hector Berlioz’s The Roman Carnival Overture, Opus 9; Carl Maria von Weber’s Fantasia and Rondo from Clarinet Quintet in B-flat, Opus 34, featuring clarinet soloist Master Gunnery Sgt. Frederick Vare; and Bruce Broughton’s Silverado Overture. Broughton, the composer of several TV and film scores, received an Academy Award nomination for his Silverado Overture, composed for the 1985 western film of the same name. The overture captures the feel of the wild west perfectly and makes one feel they are horseback riding through a small western town and toward a majestic sunset.

 

Following Broughton’s Overture, baritone vocalist Master Sgt. Kevin Bennear will sing “Arm, Arm, Ye Brave” from George Frideric Handel’s popular oratorio Judas Maccabaeus. The oratorio tells the story of Hanukkah and the aria “Arm, Arm, Ye Brave” is sung by the character Simon to rally the Jewish people to arms against their oppressors. The program will conclude with Alfred Reed’s Armenian Dances, Part 1. Reed was commissioned by the director of bands at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to compose a work incorporating some of the over 4,000 Armenian folk melodies collected by pioneering ethnomusicologist Komitas Vardapet. Reed described the piece as a “symphonic rhapsody” that captured the essence and character of the folk tunes.

 

The concerts are free but weather permitting. Concert cancellations will be announced by 6 p.m. at (202) 433-4011 and at www.facebook.com/marineband. For more information visit www.marineband.marines.mil.


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