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Constellations set to lift your winter blues

Campbell River Community Band brings outer space to the Maritime Heritage Centre Saturday
The Campbell River Community Band is set to lift the community’s collective winter blues by taking them to outer space on Saturday – metaphorically

Instead of giving a Christmas concert this year, the Campbell River Community Band decided they would all need cheering up by the end of January. And how much further from this dreary winter can you get than outer space?

In a concert entitled “Constellations,” the band will take you there on Saturday (Jan.28).

The concert is at 7 p.m. in the Maritime Heritage Centre. Admission is by donation and and refreshments prepared by the members will be served.

Under the direction of Kolya Kowalchuk, the thirty-member band has prepared an exciting program of new and familiar music centred on stars, planets and the exploration of outer space.

Frank Ticheli is one of America’s leading composers of band music. A new score by Ticheli is always a revelation and Sun Dance is no exception. The composer wanted to express a feeling of “bright joy” in this spirited piece with lots of interesting dance rhythms.

The music John Williams wrote for Star Wars pretty much defined “outer space” for a generation, and the band has worked hard on a long medley of this great music for the concert, as well.

One Giant Leap, by Erik Morales, uses audio clips from President Kennedy, Commander Neil Armstrong and others as the music tells the story of the historic moon landing, especially timely as the last man to set foot on the moon has just died.

Sometimes you need a little whimsy to get through January. When you Wish upon a Star, originally from the film Pinocchio and now inseparable from the Disney brand, has been arranged in big band style by Sammy Nestico and features trumpeter Roger Kirk.

Other music will be less familiar to the audience, but there is plenty of variety in works such as To a Distant Place, To Sail Beyond the Stars, Beyond the Horizon, Mars, and a suite titled Constellations.

Although this is an evening concert, it’s early enough and short enough that parents should feel free to bring their children.

The Campbell River Community Band is celebrating its twenty-first year.  The founding director, Celine Ouellette, now plays in the horn section, and another previous director, Phil Cassidy, is in the trombone section.

Current conductor Kolya Kowalchuk is well known in the Campbell River area, where he grew up. He is the music teacher at L’École Phoenix Middle School and L’École des Deux Mondes.

Admission to  the concert is by donation, to help defray the costs of renting the band room at Carihi, insurance, and music.

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