Not only is Memorial Day an opportunity to salute our veterans and military personnel, it is often considered the “unofficial” beginning of the summer. In celebration of this holiday, the Oak Ridge Community Band will perform its Memorial Day concert on Monday, May 29. The performance will begin at 7 p.m. in A.K. Bissell Park, and there is no admission fee, although donations are gratefully appreciated to help offset band expenses.
The public is encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets for outdoor seating around the Performing Arts Pavilion, and Razzleberry’s Ice Cream Lab will continue its tradition of providing refreshments during the concert. This concert is an excellent way for area residents, families, and friends to end the Memorial Day holiday weekend and have the opportunity to honor the men and women who have served in the military to maintain our freedom, a press release said.
“A special invitation goes out to area military veterans and to the men and women currently serving in the U.S. Armed Forces to attend the Memorial Day concert,” the press release said. “As the band performs ‘Armed Forces Medley ’72,’ veterans and military personnel will be asked to stand during the song that represents the branch of the military they served in.”
The Memorial Day program directed by band leader Dale Pendley will entertain the audience with a number of patriotic selections, big band, swing, jazz, and show tunes, the press release said.
Also featured on the program will be vocalists Lettie Andrade De La Torre and Deidre Ford. De La Torre is a classical and jazz singer who has performed abroad and with the Knoxville Opera; several area concert bands, including the Knoxville Ensemble Swing Time Band; and with the Oak Ridge Community Band in previous events. Ford is a freelance vocal and woodwind performer who directs the Ensemble Swing time Big Band and regularly performs in local pit orchestras as a woodwind doubler and as a vocalist with other area swing and jazz bands, the press release said.
Band rehearsals will begin on Thursday, June 1, to prepare for the July 4 concert. Area musicians including high school and college band students are invited to join the band for the remaining summer concerts. For more information, visit www.orcb.org or call (865) 483-3044.