It’s easy to be ...

Jun 29 2013 - 11:55pm

At noon each week day during the summer, you are liable to see a crowd at the Logan LDS Tabernacle in the middle of town. Talented individuals present music, lectures, opera, and all kinds of entertainment for an hour to delighted audiences.

Two weeks ago I attended a concert by the Cache Community Band (begun in the 1970s and still going strong.) I decided to sit in the balcony with a good view of the band. The following is what I observed.

Four aging service men sat on the stand while the music of their military corp was played. We were appreciative of a thin little man in Marine Corp dress who stood at attention while the band played "From the Halls of Montezuma." He wore a Purple Heart given him for bravery in the Second World War. I don't like war, but I thought of all the years since his service and how good it must feel for him and the other three to be recognized for their valor. So exciting!

In fact, the MC did get so excited he jumped up to announce the third number before the second one could be played.

Several special needs individuals were in the audience. I don't know how others reacted but I was delighted when during one of the numbers a young woman across from me stood up and warbled (that's the only word to describe it). 

Some scowled at her, but I thought she expressed what I felt also. Another woman in a wheel chair bobbed her head through each number, indicating she, too, enjoyed the music.

A trio from the band played the theme from the Pink Panther on tuba, flute and saxophone. Wow! What a surprise! You'd think such dissimilar instruments would sound odd, but the low blast of the tuba, the trilling of the flute, and the musicality of the saxophone surprised us all. We gave them an overwhelming appreciation with our applause. After their rendition the tuba and clarinetist played a Fluba Duet called the "Pie in the Face Polka." We laughed, we cried!

The playful antics of the band entertained us with their ingenuity. Remember learning to type to Leroy Anderson's "The Typewriter." In high school my type teacher was an Anderson, and my typing skills improved whenever he played the record of the typewriter music. In preparation for a rendition by the band, a clarinetist, and three percussionists blended their skills with the band. Another clarinetist, dressed in tuxedo, walked up to the typewriter, flexed his hands, and sat down. The music started with him "typing", and the percussionists making the sounds of the keys, the carriage and the bell. We loved it.

When a medley of tunes from the "Pirates of the Caribbean" was announced the band members donned pirate hats. The leader's hat sported a large feather that waved as he led the band. Though I thought the medley got a little tedious, I enjoyed their fun-loving attire.

A father and two little boys sat in the balcony across from the band. I noticed the father bouncing his youngest on his knee in time to the music, or waving the boy's arms like a director. The three were having a wonderful time. I later learned the mother played trumpet in the band, including an opening "Taps" rendition played in the foyer.

When the closing number, "The Stars and Stripes Forever," (which is the official march of the country by act of Congress), we were all in unison. I noted those sitting in the balcony near me were beating time with their feet as was I. The whole audience clapped along with the music and asked for encores. I think we could have stayed another hour it was so enjoyable.

From an early age I remember attending band concerts with my parents at Lester Park in Ogden. Soon after my husband and I and our family moved to Logan we enjoyed the Utah State Alumni Band's Sunday afternoon concerts on the Union Building patio, then on the lawn of the quad. 

Now I can add the Tabernacle concert to the concerts I enjoy. There is something, though, about patriotic music that makes you feel like standing up and clapping, yelling, and singing along. Or ... kissing a musician for Independence Day!

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