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Municipal band features vocalist, french horn

The DeKalb Municipal Band presents the 11th concert of the 2013 season of summer band concerts at 8 p.m. Wednesday in the Hopkins Park Dee Palmer Band Shell. Barb McCaskey is the featured vocalist and Brian Mayer is featured on the French Horn.

McCaskey has performed in theaters that include Stagecoach Players in DeKalb, Steel Beam Theater in St. Charles, and New American Theater and Clocktower Theater in Rockford.

McCaskey is scheduled to appear in Stagecoach’s “Company,” which runs today through Aug. 18. She plays the role of Joanne in this musical comedy.  

In her first performance with the DeKalb Municipal Band, McCaskey will sing George Gershwin’s  ballad “Embraceable You,” and from the Broadway stage, Brigadoon’s “Its Almost Like Being in Love,” and “I’m in Love with a Wonderful Guy” from Rodgers and Hammerstein’s South Pacific.

French Horn soloist Brian Mayer is a native of Yellow Springs, Ohio. Mayer moved with his wife, Emilie, to DeKalb to attend Northern Illinois University majoring in Music Education on a French horn scholarship. 

In addition to playing horn with DeKalb Municipal Band since 2010, he also is one of the tuba players for Prairie Brass Band in Arlington Heights. 

Mayer will play an unusual solo for the French Horn, “Csardus.” This Hungarian rhapsody has been rewritten and transcribed for piano, xylophone, flute, alto saxophone, tuba, accordion, symphony orchestra, concert and marching band, a champion whistler and even a bottle band. 

The band’s program will include newer marches by Canadian composer Robert Farnon’s “Allsports March,” and “Best Broadway Marches”  with some classic ones by Fillmore, R.B. Hall and Sousa.

Tchaikovsky’s “Finale from the 4th Symphony” is reflective of most turbulent time of  his life in 1877, when he met two women who forced him to evaluate himself as he never had before. 

Powerful chords in the brass instruments and frenzied woodwinds, are counterbalanced with passionate melodies.

“Benny Goodman – King of Swing” samples the music of Benny Goodman, who was the driving force of launching the swing era in the mid 1930’s.

Lerner and Loewe‘s “Camelot,” an exciting Spanish paso doble “El Relicario,” some old time melodies and Leroy Anderson’s first hit tune  “Blue Tango,” are all on the program.

The Hopkins Park band shell is located behind the swimming pool at 1403 Sycamore Road, DeKalb. Bench seating is available or bring a lawn chair or blanket to sit on the grass. DeKalb Municipal Band concerts are sponsored by the City of DeKalb and the DeKalb Park District.,

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