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Concert band honors veterans
ARLINGTON North Cascades Concert Band played a tribute for Veterans Day, Sunday, Nov. 11 when the band presented Sounds of America at the Byrnes Performing Arts Center in Arlington.
In a moving tribute to veterans, the band played all the military branch songs. Audience members who served in the various branches were asked to stand during the performance of their anthem, along with family members, and the musicians also stood, some standing while performing at the same time.
The program included songs by American composers that were inspired by the history of different wars. The Chester Overture for Band came from Americas first composer, William Billings, according to the bands conductor, Lylburn Layer, although the version performed was more recently composed by 20th century composer William Schuman. They played Jerry Biliks American Civil War Fantasy and the Original Dixieland Concerto arranged by Johnny Warrington.
The Elegy for a Young American was composed by Ronald Lo Presti. It is a somber tribute to the assassination of John F. Kennedy. With a few marches thrown in for good measure, including the Rolling Thunder March, by Henry Fillmore.
The tribute to American music also included some lighter-hearted music, including some popular songs from the Broadway music world, such as selections from Oklahoma by Rodgers and Hammerstein and the Magic of Andrew Lloyd Webber in a collection of popular show tunes arranged by an American, Warren Barker.
That piece was conducted by the bands assistant conductor, Rob Pattermann, one of many members who live and/or work in north Snohomish County.
A former assistant superintendent of Arlington schools, Pattermann plays trombone with NCCB.
Arlington members also include Gretchen Pigott on flute, Christina Waltman, on bassoon, Elley Moen, clarinet, Paul Graves, euphonium, Patrick Swesey on trombone, Warren Hopkins on tuba and Pam Moser on percussion. Marysville is also well-represented on the band, with Lorrie Winchell, on flute, Miriam Greenshields, clarinet, Jeannine Lish, on clarinet, Alan Lish on trumpet and Al Baker on tuba.
An Arlington teacher who lives in Stanwood, Bob LaTorre led a smaller ensemble, Skagit Swing, of which he is director, presenting some popular tunes of the 1940s swing years.
A member of the audience, Loren Kraetz, who donated $100,000 to help pay for the new performing arts center, said he enjoyed the music, but he was disappointed by the audience,
I am very disappointed to see the absence of students in attendance, he said.
I would think that the school districts music teachers would encourage, if not require, them to experience this music.
One of the musicians, Paul Graves, whose company, ViewPoint Lending, of Marysville, subsidized the rental of the PAC for the band, said that Warren Hopkins did offer free admission to all music students in the district.