Dunedin Concert Band's Holiday Concert "My Old Home Town Christmas! - 2 Performances - Friday, December 14, 8 PM and Sunday, December 16, 3 PM, Edinburgh Hall, Dunedin Community Center
The Dunedin Concert Band (DCB), under the direction of Music Director and Conductor, Dr. Louis Alan Zagar, will mark the beginning of its 31st concert season on December 14 and 16, 2012. They will be presenting their annual Christmas spectacular, “My Old Home Town Christmas.” A “Boston Pops”-styled concert, it will present some of the holiday season’s most exciting and unique musical selections from hometowns across the country and around the world. And, where else can you experience an actual snowball fight on stage, in addition to the spiritual and uplifting sounds of the “Hallelujah Chorus” from the “Messiah” by Georg Fredrich Handel!
As the curtain opens, this 75-member ensemble will perform a brilliant and highly-syncopated arrangement of “Ding Dong, Merrily Along” that is certain to bring smiles to all. To honor the “reason for the season,” Dr. Zagar discovered a powerful and moving version of the famous “Coventry Carol,” a 16th-century work that celebrates the beginning of that first Christmas story, and its music speaks of King Herod’s infamous biblical decree. “This could be one of the most emotionally moving moments in our concert weekend,” said Dr. Zagar.
The audience will get to hear the “cool jazz” sounds of Chicago and New York, in a swinging version of “Good Swing Wenceslas” by famed composer Sammy Nestico. Even the Dixieland stylings of old New Orleans and the French Quarter will be heard in a rousing rendition of “The Saints’ Hallelujah.” “This is a unique combination of both “When the Saints Go Marching In” and our grand finale, “The Hallelujah Chorus” that should have just about everyone in the hall tapping their toes.”
The DCB will introduce local soprano and superb jazz stylist, Erica DiCeglie, in a delightful tune called “Snow Day Celebration.” Dr. Zagar wrote special lyrics just for this concert presentation. The song will be introduced by former Cleveland, OH TV personality, Bob “Houlihan the Weatherman” Wells. Said Dr. Zagar, “This is a “kids-eye-view” of hearing that school has been cancelled, due to a snow storm and the great sledding fun that follows. It is a gentle reminder of a time when we were all kids…or at least kids at heart.” Ms. DiCeglie returns later in the concert with an up-tempo version of the 1954 Perry Como hit, “Home for the Holidays.”
There are some rather touching moments during the concerts, too, with two selections based on the venerable “Silent Night.” “We actually joined two separate arrangements to give the audience an opportunity to raise their voices in song, as well as allowing the band to pay tribute to those who aren’t able to be in familiar confines of their own home towns for the holidays. It also gives the Dunedin Concert Band members an opportunity to say a final farewell to one of our own members, Ray Cary (tuba) who unexpectedly passed away earlier this year.”
There will be some musical shenanigans too, first with a performance of “Cowboy Christmas.” It recognizes that some hometowns are actually “hometowns on the range.” The wild, wooly and unpredictable “Laughing All the Way (For Those Who Love Snow)” follows. As Dr. Zagar points out, “Both tunes are just delightful and fun, and you will see a real live snowball fight on stage right in the middle of the playing of “Laughing All the Way.” We were all kids once, so letting our hair down a bit on stage should be great fun?” Hopefully, no one will get hurt.
For its always anticipated Grand Finale, The Dunedin Concert Band will be joined by Ms. DiCeglie, soprano, Pamela Hood Kooyenga, Bass-Baritone Nolan Marshall and tenor, Phillip Tropea in a stage performance of “The Halleujah Chorus” from “The Messiah” by Georg Fredrich Handel. “I believe this will be the first time that a community band has presented this historic work complete with vocalists on stage. Bringing together these remarkable singers with the sheer musical power of the Dunedin Concert Band looks to be one of the high points of our entire musical season. It is not to be missed,” said Dr. Zagar.
Concerts are held in the Dunedin Community Center, 1920 Pinehurst Road and are free to the public with a free-will donation at the concert’s conclusion. Concert times are December 14, 2012 at 8 pm and December 16, 2012 at 3 pm, in the Edinburgh Hall. A pre-concert performance by the newly-formed DCB Brass Quintet will begin approximately 30 minutes before each Dunedin Concert Band performance.
For more information, call the Dunedin Community Center at (727) 812-4530.