Posts Tagged ‘Veterans’ Day’

Veterans’ Day: patriotic concert

The jazz band performed first, and then the 36th Infantry Division concert band, which appeared to be the jazz band plus many additional musicians. Another configuration of the band marched in the Congress Avenue parade earlier in the day. These are musicians of the highest ability. There can be no finer setting for music than the outdoor terrace at the Long Center for the performing arts, with its spectacular view of the downtown Austin skyline. The capacity audience was delighted from start to finish by the spirited and stirring music. Also heard was a traditional recitation piece called “A Toast to the Flag.” The jazz program included the best performance of “In the Mood” that I’ve ever heard. We were treated to a Filmore march (“Americans We”) and two Sousa gems, complete with piccolo embellishments (“Washington Post” and “Stars and Stripes Forever”). Musician and vocalist SPC Bonnie Wellington sang a moving “America the Beautiful.” Austin is indeed the live music capital of the world. The toy-camera images and unedited videos do not come close to doing justice to this occasion.


Not on any New Year’s Eve, not on any Fourth of July, not ever have I heard so many private fireworks exploding as I heard as soon as darkness fell on Election Day. We could see sparklers lit, too. All week long, the weather has been perfect for leaving windows and doors open before suppertime, and the sound of music-practice has come from all directions. These are student efforts, and I’ve been impressed to hear violin and piano improvements from some players not heard since early in the summer. Thursday evening the atmosphere carried to our ears the stirring sounds of massed drums and elaborate cadences. This was a mystery that took some time to solve, but no doubt we were enjoying an informal session connected to the big national meeting (held in Austin this year) of the Percussive Arts Society International Convention.

On Friday morning’s Wake Up Call, KAZI 88.7-fm sent out over the air waves more solo performances of Kum Ba Yah than may ever be heard again anywhere. Man, women, and children came to the telephone to sing for us all. One singer offered the lyrics in French. And for variety there were excerpts from A Change Is Gonna Come and also from Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing.

Tonight will bring Rossini’s comic-opera version of Cinderella. I don’t know whether the KMFA radio simulcast will affect the live performance, but I’ll be finding out. I’ll be attending Cenerentola for certain tonight, and I hope to hear a free classical-guitar recital tomorrow evening.

And Tuesday brings us the Veterans’ Day parade up Congress to the Capitol. I don’t know what other music will accompany the procession, but the band from Del Valle seldom fails to make an appearance and is scheduled to play this year, also. Though I haven’t seen them, I believe that I’ve heard a practice run of at least one of the vintage aircraft scheduled for flyover on that day.

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