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Raritan Valley Symphonic Band Annual Pops Concert

Published: June 12, 2024; Author: Julia Sonrisa

 June 16, 2024    03:00 PM-04:30 PM EDT

Bridgewater-Raritan Regional High School

Address: 600 Garretson Road, Bridgewater, NJ 08807, United States

Phone: +1 908-231-8660

Web: https://hs.brrsd.org/

Raritan Valley Symphonic Band Annual Pops Concert

Conducted by Musical Director William Berz, the concert will feature a wide section of American marches, Broadway show tunes, and Hollywood movie music. RVSB members Frank Amato and John Hylkema will also be conducting.

The concert begins with John Phillip Sousa’s The Naval Reserve March, composed by Sousa while in charge of the Great Lakes Navy Band program during World War I and dedicated to the officers and men of the Naval Reserve.

Singin’ in the Rain by Nacio Herb Brown is from the 1929 Broadway production of “The Hollywood Music Box Revue”. However, the song became famous in the 1952 film which featured Gene Kelly singing and dancing in the rain.

The Military Escort March was composed by the famous American composer Henry Fillmore under the pseudonym Harold Bennett. Fillmore composed pieces under several different names as a marketing scheme to help sales, but this became one of his more popular compositions.

RVSB member Frank Amato will then conduct selections from the 1971 American film Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, featuring the popular song “The Candy Man”.

A Tribute to Marvin Hamlisch is a medley of songs written by the extremely successful composer of music for films and the Broadway stage. Included are “They’re Playing My Song’, ‘One’ and ‘What I Did for Love’ (both from A Chorus Line), ‘The Entertainer’ (from the film Sting), and ‘The Way We Were’ (from the film of the same name).

The concert’s first half concludes with another John Phillip Sousa march: US Field Artillery.

Assistant Conductor John Hylkema will lead Edwin Franko Goldman’s Chimes of Liberty to start the second half of the concert.

Dr. Berz will then return with Make our Garden Grow, the final selection in Leonard Bernstein’s operetta ‘Candide’, which was also featured in the 2023 movie ‘Maestro’.

Karl King is one of America’s greatest composers of marches, many written for circus bands. Gallant Marines was one of several military marches written in 1942 during World War II.

Irving Berlin is arguably one of America’s greatest songwriters, having written some 1500 songs and scores for 20 Broadway shows and 15 movies. The band will perform a James Swearingen medley of Berlin’s songs: Irving Berlin’s Songs for America. This medley includes ‘This is the Army, Mister Jones,’ ‘Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor,’ ‘This is a Great Country,’ and ‘God Bless America.’

The concert concludes with two patriotic pieces. James Swearingen’s To Honor America is a patriotic medley featuring ‘America the Beautiful,’ ‘Yankee Doodle,’ ‘When Johnny Comes Marching Home,’ Simple Gifts,” and “America.” The program concludes with another popular march by Edwin Franco Goldman: On the Mall. Goldman started the Goldman Band which performed summer concerts throughout New York City for over 93 years.

Musical Director William Berz is Professor Emeritus at Rutgers University where he served on the faculty for 42 years, including 11 as Director of the Music Department. Dr. Berz returned to the RVSB podium in 2022 after previously serving as its Musical Director in the 2000s.

RVSB comprises about 75 musicians from the northern and central New Jersey area. Band membership includes professional musicians and music educators, as well as amateur musicians ranging in age from high school through retirees.

This concert is funded, in part, by a grant from the Somerset County Cultural and Heritage Commission. For more information about the band please visit the website.

Time: 3:00-4:30 pm EDT

Free!

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