by Oda Lisa, published in The Wimberley View 9/21/23
Later this fall, the Hill Country Community Band will share their musical gifts by presenting “Gems of the Concert Band” at the First Baptist Church of Wimberley.
During the free and family-friendly concert on Sunday, Oct. 1, band director Manuel Arambula, Ph.D., will conduct a number of well-known compositions, among others: “Allerseelen” (“All Souls’ Day”), by Richard Strauss; “The Free Lance March” (“On to Victory”) by John Philip Sousa; and “Second Suite in F for Military Band” by Gustav Holst.
Arambula said, “I believe very highly in honoring the heritage of the concert band. Until the previous century, western music was dominated by music for the symphony orchestra. Much progress has been made in the last one hundred years in regards to concert band music. For our season opener, I wanted a program that honors the heritage of the concert band by programming only ‘classic’ band pieces.”
Explaining what he considers classic, he said, “These are musical pieces that are of high quality and written specifically for the concert band. These have stood the test of time and are still continually played in the concert band world.”
The Hill Country Community Band is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose musicians are volunteers from the Central Texas area. Visit hillcountrycommunityband.org or follow the HCCB on Facebook for more information.
After sitting outside in the heat enjoying “The Best Little Parade in Texas,” what could be better than sitting in air conditioning listening to beautiful music by two of Wimberley’s best and longest running musical groups? The Wimberley Community Chorus and the Hill Country Community Band are coming back together this year for the 11th Annual Hometown Patriotic Concert on July 4 at 3 p.m. at the Wimberley First Baptist Church, located at 15951 Winters Mill Parkway.
This year, the programming will feature patriotic songs celebrating the birth and history of the United States while including other pieces that allow the Band and the Chorus to shine individually. Standards such as “America the Beautiful,” “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” “God Bless America,” and “Stars and Stripes Forever” harness the full force of over 95 musicians. “Hymn to the Fallen” by John Williams from Saving Private Ryan is accompanied by a powerful video presentation honoring those that gave everything for us. During “Armed Forces Salute,” flags of our country’s military branches are invited to stand and be honored. Joe and Luellyn Dollard, both accomplished veterans of the US Navy Band, will perform “The Elephant and the Fly/Duo Characteristique.” The band will also perform “A Tribute to Dave Brubeck” with Craig Barnstable as saxophone soloist. New numbers by the Chorus will include the traditional Shaker tune “Simple Gifts,” arranged by Mark Hayes and “Song for the Unsung Hero” by Joseph Martin.
The Wimberley Community Chorus will be directed by Ed Snouffer with his wife, Andrea, accompanying the chorus on piano.
The Hill Country Community Band will be directed by Manuel Arambula.
The chorus and band said they are happy to be performing together again and hope to see the community singing along and enjoying music together again.
Anyone interested in participating in the chorus or band can find more information at their websites: wimberleycommunitychorus.org and hillcountrycommunityband.org.
by Oda Lisa, published in The Wimberley View 5/11/23
The Hill Country Community Band will be back in action later this month with another spring performance.
The concert will take place on Sunday, May 21, at 4 p.m. at the First Baptist Church of Wimberley. The free and family-friendly concert, billed as “Contemporary Classical Dances,” will spotlight works by notable composers such as Reed, Marquez and Sousa. Directed by Dr. Manuel Arambula, the program will include a handful of lively compositions such as “Armenian Dances, Parts I and II,” “Danzon No. 2,” and “Washington Post.”
One unique feature of this concert will be the addition of guest pianist, Karla Cruz, who received a music education degree from Texas State University, with an emphasis on piano. According to her recent biography, this married mother of two has been directing middle and high school choirs in central Texas for 30 years. Currently, she is the choir director at Canyon High School in New Braunfels. Under her direction, choirs have received consistent sweepstakes awards at UIL competitions and have won best of class at festivals in Breckenridge, Los Angeles, South Padre Island, and Toronto. In Canada, her choir was awarded the “Esprit de Corps” award. In 1999, her choir was selected as an honor choir to perform at the Texas Music Educators Association convention. She has also been the Choral Director at the Wimberley United Methodist Church for the past five years.
During the HCCB’s afternoon performance, Cruz will be the featured soloist for “Danzon No. 2” by Arturo Marquez and will play the harp part on grand piano for “Armenian Dances I and II” by Alfred Reed.
The HCCB will perform with the Wimberley Community Chorus for the Hometown Patriotic Concert on July 4.
The Hill Country Community Band is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose musicians are volunteers from the Central Texas area. To keep up with the band’s concert schedule, to find out how to join or how to donate time or money, visit hillcountrycommunityband.org.
by Oda Lisa, published in The Wimberley View 4/6/23
Save the date for another free concert presented by the Hill Country Community Band at the Wimberley Community Center, located at 14068 RR 12.
The band’s performance will take place Saturday, April 8, at 4 p.m. One band member described the program titled, From Opera to Broadway, as “a broad sweep across theater experiences.”
“We will perform selections spanning from the 1850 opera Lohengrin, across time to Les Miserables,” HCCB Director Manuel Arambula said.
According to program notes, “Lohengrin is a Romantic opera in three acts, composed and written by Richard Wagner. The ‘Procession’ comes at the end of Act II, when Elsa, a princess in Brabant (Antwerp), is on her way to be married to the knight, whom we later learn is Lohengrin, Knight of the Holy Grail.”
Another operatic selection from the band will be “El Capitan” by John Philip Sousa, whose works are frequently featured by the HCCB.
“First performed in 1896, it relates the story of Don Errico Medigua, who is viceroy of Spanish-occupied sixteenth-century Peru,” the program notes add.
From the Broadway stage, the band will perform soundtrack “Highlights from Les Miserables,” based on Victor Hugo’s 1862 novel.
“This medley of highlights from the musical includes ‘Look Down,’ ‘At the End of the Day,’ ‘I Dreamed a Dream,’ ‘Master of the House,’ ‘Suddenly,’ and ‘Do You Hear the People Sing?’,” the program notes state.
Continuing in the musical theater vein is the performance of “Symphonic Dances” from Fiddler on the Roof. The program notes cited that the 1964 blockbuster Broadway musical won nine Tony awards.
The Hill Country Community Band’s next concert after this week’s performance will be held on Sunday, May 21, at 4 p.m.
The Hill Country Community Band is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose musicians are volunteers from the Central Texas area. To keep up with the band’s concert schedule, to find out how to join or how to donate time or money, visit hillcountrycommunityband.org or follow HCCB on Facebook.