The Marine Jazz Combo will spread some jazzy holiday cheer with a performance at 2 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 16 at the Bowie Center for the Performing Arts in Bowie, Md. The concert is free and tickets are not required.
Holiday jazz concerts by “The President’s Own” began in 2013. Each year the John Philip Sousa Band Hall was filled with so many people it was clear the ensemble needed a larger venue. In 2016 the Marine Big Band moved to the plaza at National Harbor in Fort Washington, Md., and in 2017 moved back indoors at the Bowie Center for the Performing Arts. The Marine Jazz Combo will make its debut this year in Bowie with a program that will feature a wide variety of music.
“All of the songs are familiar but the arrangements are different than anything one is going to hear on the radio at this time of year,” said Master Sgt. Alan Prather, guitar player and the leader of the Marine Jazz Combo. “The selections are a mix of Christmas and holiday favorites arranged in different styles. These arrangements of those familiar melodies are wonderfully creative and still sound fresh, even though they were written years ago.”
Selections include, “Angels We Have Heard on High,” “Let It Snow!,” “What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?,” “Winter Wonderland,” “Carol of the Bells,” and “Count Your Blessings” from “White Christmas.”
Master Sgt. Prather said it will be great fun to offer this performance to the Bowie community. “I'm hopeful that families will come and spend the afternoon together with members of the Marine Band and leave feeling the joy of the season. I’d really like to encourage families with children to come to the concert. Kids will recognize the songs and, when played by a fun ensemble like this, I think this music really comes to life!”
Bowie Center for the Performing Arts is located at 15200 Annapolis Road in Bowie, Md. Free parking is available.