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Sanibel’s community band warming up for first rehearsal of the season

By Staff | Oct 6, 2011

PHOTO COURTESY OF BIG ARTS Sanibel’s Community Band will begin rehearsing for its 9th season

Sanibel’s Community Band will be rehearsing for its 9th season on the island and is searching for current and former musicians interested in a toe-tapping good time. The band, which was formed by Tom Uhler and Lavern Phillips, performs timeless marches and arrangements of popular and classical music.

“I have been very pleased with the progress of the band,” said its director Don Knowland.

When the community band was being created, only five people showed up for the very first meeting. As he began to wonder what exactly he had gotten himself into, Knowland found islanders and visitors that missed playing an instrument.

“Most of them have played an instrument at one time or another in their life,” said Claudia Burns, who helps manage the band. “Since a bulk of our musicians are ‘snowbirds,’ the band is much smaller in the fall.”

The band really warms up with 30 to 35 musicians after January and plays more challenging pieces of music, such as a very brassy and lively rendition of a “Star Wars” medley and a very exciting piece by Gould. There are two main concerts each year Veteran’s Day and Christmas that help pay for the band’s music and use of Schein Hall at BIG Arts.

“We need interested players, who have played an instrument in the past,” said Knowland, who has been the volunteer director since the band’s inception. “Just bring an instrument to rehearsal.”

The community band will have its first rehearsal of the season at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 10 in the fellowship hall of St. Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church, 2304 Periwinkle Way, across from the community park. Rehearsals last approximately two hours each Monday evening and performances are in a variety of venues including Schein Hall.

If you would like to rediscover the joys of rehearsing and performing band classics, such as marches and arrangements of popular music, as well as original pieces written specifically for the band, Sanibel’s community band will welcome you.

For more information about the band or to join, contact Knowland at 415-9092, 246-4158 or by email at doninfortmyers@gmail.com.