The Monmouth College Symphonic Concert Band will team up with guests

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MONMOUTH – For his first spring performance leading the Monmouth College Symphonic Concert Band, director John Eckstine brings in two guest conductors and another college musical group.

The Symphonic Concert Band will perform half a dozen pieces at 2 p.m. May 1 in the Kasch Performance Hall in the College’s Dahl Chapel and Auditorium. The concert is free and open to the public.

“The Monmouth College Symphonic Concert Band has improved tremendously since our first meeting in January,” Eckstine said. “Starting with 14 students, we were able to grow the ensemble to 35 members by incorporating current university students with musicians from local high schools and community groups.”

After Eckstine conducts the opening piece, “Flourish for Wind Band” by Ralph Vaughn Williams, the first of two guest conductors will take the stage. Andrew Empey, director of bands at Galesburg High School, will lead the band in a performance of “Kentucky 1800” by Claire Grundman.

One of the band members, French horn player Lisa Hallen, is also assistant band director at Monmouth-Roseville High School. She will take the conductor’s baton to conduct a performance of “The Great Locomotive Chase” by Robert W. Smith.

After Eckstine conducts a rendition of Jamie Texidor’s “Amparito Roca,” the Symphonic Concert Band will team up with the Monmouth College Wind Ensemble, conducted by Morgan Miller.

The two bands will perform Eric Whitacre’s “Sleep” and John Philip Sousa’s “The Stars and Stripes Forever”.

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