Naperville Municipal Band shows patriotism at annual July concert

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On Thursday July 7th the Naperville Municipal Band held their annual patriotic concert in Downtown Naperville’s Central Park. The concert, which featured patriotic favorites, was rescheduled after unsafe air quality in the area the week before. The change of date did not stop the eager audience from coming to support Naperville’s beloved band and the clear skies and warm weather provided the perfect backdrop for this year’s show. Ann Lord acted as MC, introducing and adding historical anecdotes for each piece.  Joining the band was a group of reenactors, who dressed in period-accurate Civil War costumes and fired their 6 canons during the band’s performance of the Overture to 1812. This highly anticipated performance is a yearly tradition which began in 1977 when the Naperville Municipal Band played it for the first time.  Per the request of director Ron Keller, canons were added, and the song has become a staple to the Patriotic Concert ever since.

The Band’s Patriotic Favorites

The July concert included:

Americans We by Henry Filmore

Crusade for Freedom by J.J. Richards

Fantasy on Yankee Doodle arr. Mark Williams

American Patrol by F. W. Meacham

E Pluribus Unum by Fred Jewell

Blue and Gray Suite by Clare Grundman

Salute to the Armed Forces

Overture to 1812 by Tchaikovsky, arr. Mayhew Lake

America the Beautiful by Carmen Dragon

God Bless America by Irving Berlin, arr. H. Ades

Stars and Stripes Forever by John Philip Sousa

About the Naperville Municipal Band

The band consists of an impressive 100 plus members, and has been entertaining crowds in Central Park for over 150 years. The band includes musicians for the following instruments: flute, piccolo, oboe, bassoon, E-flat clarinet, B-flat clarinet, bass clarinet, contra-bass clarinet, alto saxophone, bari saxophone, tenor saxophone, French horn, cornet, trumpet, trombone, euphonium, tuba, and percussion. This year’s concert marks Dr. Ron Keller’s final Patriotic Concert as the band’s long-time director. Their 2023 summer concert series consists of 11 concerts in Central Park, all of which are free to the public to enjoy.

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