concert band instruments

Athens City Schools’ Bands Set to Perform Sunday

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More than 270 Athens band students will take the stage to perform a variety of pieces, as well as some familiar tunes, at this year’s Athens City Schools All Band Concert, which is set to set place 3 p.m. Sunday in the Athens High School Auditorium.

The combined fifth grade band and combined sixth grade band from East, West, Morrison-Gordon and The Plains Elementary schools will perform, said Aaron Backes Director of Bands. Following those performances are the Athens Middle School seventh and eighth grade bands. And finally, the performance will conclude with the Athens High School Symphonic Band and Jazz Band.

Among the pieces on the program are “Hard Rock Blues,” from the fifth grade band, a Spanish piece by Victor Lopez called “Armada,” from the sixth grade band, an arrangement from Antonin Dvorak’s famous “New World Symphony,” from the seventh grade band and “Pirates of the Barbary Coast,” from the eighth grade band, Backes said.

The Athens High School Symphonic Band is set to play three contemporary works: “Dusk” by Steven Bryant, “3 O’Clock Mix” by Jonathan Newman and “Charm” by Kevin Puts.

“‘Dusk’ is a slower, expressive piece, which contrasts the fast energy of ‘3 O’Clock Mix’ and ‘Charm.’ ‘Charm’ has especially challenging and fun rhythms for the students,” Backes told The Messenger.

And, finally, the Athens High School Jazz Band will play the Duke Ellington “Satin Doll,” as well as a fast swing chart called, “Jive at Five,” he said.

“It takes a lot of work and help from students, parents and the band boosters, but I’m always impressed with how smoothly everything runs,” Backes said. “It helps that many of the students have participated in the concert for several years and know what to expect. The older students especially remember the rewarding experience of performing at the same concert as younger students, and seeing their progress over the years.”

The concert costs $5 for all non-performers. There will also be a dessert buffet and Chinese auction in the Athens High School Atrium and Cafeteria hosted by the band boosters. All proceeds will go toward music, instruments and activities for Athens band students.