The Nebraska Wind Symphony Celebrates 40 Years

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April 7th, 2017


Omaha, NE—The Nebraska Wind Symphony will host its 40th anniversary celebration concert this weekend, Sunday, April 9th at 3:00pm at the Omaha Conservatory Music.
The Wind Symphony unites eighty adult amateur musicians in the area to perform events for the community. Larry MacTaggart, music director and percussionist with the wind symphony, is enthusiastic about this weekend’s performance.

“There’s a great spirit with this group because they’re all amateurs, but they bring together a genuine love and joy of music that really transcends through when they play,” MacTaggart said. “It’s definitely something we’re very proud to represent the Omaha community and be Omaha’s community band.”

The upcoming performance will feature an original piece composed by assistant director Keith Davis, entitled “Oh the Places You’ll Go,” inspired by and written to accompany Dr. Seuss’s children’s book. Mayor Jean Stothert will narrate.

“I’ve always liked the narration pieces because it’s a way to pull a celebrity in from the community or somebody that may not be a musician maybe somebody of note in the community and narration pieces are great for that,” MacTaggart said. “And so we thought, well how about something like this, and so I was looking through my collection of Dr. Seuss books from when my daughter was little and came up with this one, said this would be a really nice one to do. I said, ‘hey what do you think about setting it to music,’ and so he took on the challenge and created a really spectacular piece. I think folks will really enjoy it. It’s a great interaction between the narrator and the ensemble and it’s got a lot of really wonderful moments in it.”

The symphony will also feature directors from its past, including its founder, Darwin “Tony” Snyder who will conduct “El Relicario,” the same piece he conducted at the Wind Symphony’s first performance in 1977.

“We’ve had previous conductors come join us and this particular concert we had, in addition to Tony Snyder joining us, we also have a former assistant conductor, Dr. Stephen Kelly, who used to also be on the faculty here at UNO,” MacTaggart said. “He will be joining us to perform a transcription of Leonard Bernstein’s “Slava” which is a great arrangement for band. And then we also have Dan Kincaid who’s a current saxophone member of the band but was an assistant conductor in the early to mid ‘90s, and he’ll be conducting a piece as well so we’ve touched about everybody that was either a primary or assistant conductor through our three concerts.”

The Nebraska Wind Symphony will present their 40th anniversary concert, “A Festive Celebration,” on Sunday, April 9th. For more information, visit nebraskawindsymphony.com or find them on Facebook.

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