New Horizons Band concert on Wednesday is a salute to veterans

The 70-member New Horizons Band of Western New York will present their Fall Concert at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday. The free concert will be held in the Harry A. King Concert Hall on the SUNY Fredonia Campus. Concert attendees are asked to bring non-perishable food items for the Westfield Food Pantry.

The program is dedicated to all who have served in our armed forces. The New Horizons Band membership begins at age 50, and so the band’s generations came of age in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s. The band will salute veterans with music that is commemorative, seasonal, composed by veterans, and iconic of the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s.

Music Director Dr. Katherine M. Levy will start with the conducting of “Star Spangled Banner,” harmonized by John Stafford Smith and arranged by Jack Stamp.

“The Greatest Generation” by Robert W. Smith will be narrated by Daniel Ihasz. This piece was written for the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor and the gathering of heroes from around the world in December of 2016. This stirring composition pays tribute to America’s “Greatest Generation.” The piece premiered on Dec. 6, 2016, at the Pearl Harbor Survivors Gala in Honolulu, Hawaii, and was performed again on the morning of Dec. 7, 2016, at Pearl Harbor as part of a ceremony at the U.S.S. Missouri overlooking the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial. Composer Robert W. Smith’s tribute to those who changed our world in World War II also pays tribute to all who have served in our armed forces. The New Horizons Band wants to thank those who served above self and insured liberty for Americans past, present, and future.

Next on the program, the band will perform “October” by Eric Whitacre, followed by “The Barker Centennial March” by Amrom Chodos under the direction of Dr. Levy. Conductor Molly Golando will finish the first half of the program with “A Sacred Suite” by Alfred Reed.

The New Horizons Jazz Band of Western New York will start the second half of the program under the direction of David Golando. Their first song will be “Moten Swing” by Buster and Bennie Moten and arranged by Michael Sweeney, followed with “Traces” by B. Buie, J. R. Cobb, and E. Gordy and arranged by Sammy Nestico. Their last piece will be “25 or 6 to 4” by Robert Lamm and arranged by Paul Murtha.

The New Horizons Band of Western New York will start their second half under the direction of Pauline Emilson conducting “All Glory Told” by James Swearingen.

Music Director Dr. Katherine M. Levy will take the stage to conduct “S’Wonderful” by George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin and arranged by Warren Barker. New Horizons Band member, Jim Holton, is the soloist. Next on the program is “The Sixties” arranged by John Higgins followed by “Saturday Night Fever” by Barry Gibb, Robin Gibb, and Maurice Bigg and arranged by John Cacavas. The last song on the program is “Sleigh Ride” by Leroy Anderson.

Advanced music education students in the School of Music provide group lesson instruction. The Fall 2018 Fredonia Student New Horizons coaches are: Marissa Caputo, Emily Comito, Patrick Daly, Olivia Davie, Amanda Gribbin, Erica Haguisan, Shannon-Kate Kelley, Alexia Lekos, Chelsi L. Lue, Maggie Mariotti, Abigail Mastrodomenico, Andy Mayce, Chris Oriani, Ryan Potter, Ariana D. Ramjattan, Alyssa Smith, and Dominic J. Vassallo.

New Horizons Band member coaches are: Pauline Emilson, Dixieland Band; Sarah Marchitelli and Jacob Swanson, Saxtette; and Linda Phillips, piano class.

The New Horizons Band Steering Committee members are: Karen Davis, Chair; Andi Mansfield, Vice-Chair; Nancy Larson, Secretary; Barb Servatius, Treasurer; Carol Corcoran; Linda Hodorowicz; John Krestic; Linda Phillips; Marti Potter; and James Wilcox. Janet Stout is the liaison/contact person for New Horizons Band of WNY to the New Horizons International Music Association. Jim Wilcox is the band manager.

Members of The New Horizons Band of Western New York live in the following communities: Angola, Brocton, Cassadaga, Derby, Dunkirk, Forestville, Fredonia, Hamburg, Lakewood, Lily Dale, Portland, Sheridan, Silver Creek, Sinclairville, Strykersville, and Westfield.

The band, under the direction of Levy, was launched by the SUNY Fredonia School of Music 13 years ago, and is living proof that, when it comes to learning to play a musical instrument, it truly is “never too late.” New Horizons Band members, who are at least 50 years old, learn to play a band instrument, return to playing a band instrument after a long absence, or continue to improve playing an instrument they have long enjoyed.

The band program includes two weekly group lessons on an instrument and two weekly band rehearsals at SUNY Fredonia’s Mason Hall. The band has an enrollment of 70 musicians.

The average band member’s age is 63. Band members’ ages range from the early 50s to the early 80s.

The New Horizons Band of Western New York will rehearse Wednesdays and Fridays 3 to 4:30 p.m. from Jan. 9 and through Feb. 1 under the direction of Donald Keddie. Lessons and band will start up the spring semester on Feb. 8 and continue through April 26 with Music Director, Katherine M. Levy and a fleet of outstanding retired music teachers/conductors and Fredonia music student instructors. New Horizons Band meets during the spring semester on Wednesdays from 3 to 4:45 p.m. and Fridays from 3 to 5:30 p.m.

Dr. Levy, conductor and education coordinator of the New Horizons Band of Western New York, is an Associate Professor of Music Education and head of the music education area at SUNY Fredonia. She is an internationally recognized mentor and conductor of New Horizons Bands.

Levy was introduced to New Horizons in 1995 when she became the brass instructor for one of the first New Horizons Bands in Iowa City, Iowa. She has conducted New Horizons Bands in Iowa and Georgia, and she founded a New Horizons Band in Hagerstown, Maryland.

“Music making is just too much fun to leave only to younger folks,” Levy said. “Almost anyone can enjoy learning to play a musical instrument when good instruction, a friendly environment, and lots of helping hands are available.”

A small tuition fee covers the cost of instruction and music. No previous background in music or on an instrument is necessary to join. Members can testify that it is possible to learn to play an instrument as a senior adult!

The New Horizons Band of Western New York (NHBWNY) is part of the Musical Journeys Program, a community outreach project offered in the Fredonia School of Music.

The band reflects the New Horizons International Music Association philosophy that music can provide challenging intellectual activity, social involvement, and “the opportunity to develop one’s musical potential to the level that will be personally rewarding.”

More information about New Horizons music efforts and the New Horizons Band of Western New York is available online at www.fredonia.edu/music/community/newhorizons.asp or by contacting Janet Stout at 549-3386 or emailing her at 354janet@gmail.com. Information about the International New Horizons project is available at www.newhorizonsmusic.org