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Music from stage and screen at band concert

Published: Thursday, June 19, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT
Roger Ackert will be the featured instrumentalist at the DeKalb Municipal Band's June 24 concert.

The DeKalb Municipal Band will present the next concert of its gala 160th season at 8 p.m. Tuesday in the Hopkins Park Dee Palmer Band Shell. Soprano Jill McCormick will be the featured vocalist and alto saxophonist Roger Ackert will be the instrumental soloist.

McCormick has a bachelor’s degree in music education from Indiana Wesleyan University, where she was a member of the acclaimed IWU Chorale. She earned her master’s degree in music from Northern Illinois University in 2005 and has been teaching general music in DeKalb schools for the past 12 years. McCormick also has produced and directed two elementary school musicals, which she thoroughly enjoys. She was raised in DeKalb County and loves performing and teaching in her community.

McCormick’s selections include “Skylark,” by Johnny Mercer and Hoagy Carmichael, “The Sound of Music,” and “Tonight,” from West Side Story.

Ackert, the band’s principal saxophone, has a bachelor’s degree in music education from the Oberlin Conservatory, a master’s degree in performance and composition from NIU, and a music degree from the U.S. Navy School of  Music. He is skilled in the woodwinds family, with emphasis on the clarinet and saxophone, and studied with clarinet professionals Ben Stoller, George Waln, Thomas Thompson, Jerome Stowell, Wilbur Smith and Leon Russianoff.

Ackert’s big band performance experience includes the Eddie Peabody USO show, Johnny Kay Orchestra, Shannanigans II, Shannanigans Show Band and the Glen Gould Orchestra Premiere. He has played with a number of symphony and swing orchestras, and has played with the DeKalb Municipal Band since 1963.

The concert will feature a variety of marches – a modern concert march, a circus march, a Spanish march and selections by John Philip Sousa. Music from Broadway’s “A Chorus Line” is on the program, and music from the score of the Steven Spielberg film “Lincoln” will make its DeKalb debut.

Admission is free. Bench seating is available, or bring your own lawn chairs or blankets. DeKalb Municipal Band concerts are sponsored by the city of DeKalb and the DeKalb Park District.

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