Mission San Juan, December 30, 2017

Mission San Juan, December 30, 2017
Mission San Juan, December 30, 2017

Sunday, March 5, 2017

An Unexpected Afternoon Delight - Sun., March 5, 2017

Today was a perfect day off. After sleeping in, we each went to exercise: Bob walked two hours in the Monte Vista neighborhood; I went to Planet Fitness and did abs, upper arms, back and elliptical cardio machine (for warm up and cool down). 

We showered, had egg salad sandwiches, and then drove to Trinity University for a free 30th-anniversary concert by the San Antonio Symphonic Band. The concert was in Laurie Auditorium, a venue we had never visited before.

The San Antonio Symphonic Band, also known as "The All-America City Band," was designated by the City Council as the official band of the City of San Antonio on September 4, 1986. It is a non-profit organization. The San Antonio Symphonic Band has performed six to eight free concerts a year in the greater San Antonio area.

Though chartered as the official band of the City of San Antonio, it receives no taxpayer-based support but relies solely on donations. It is a volunteer organization composed of adult musicians (although today's concert had about seven high-school students playing) who receive no compensation other than the joy of making music for others. The musicians come from all walks of life including the military, the private sector, public education, and the medical profession.
San Antonio Symphonic Band -
waiting for the show to begin
For a free concert, we were surprised the auditorium wasn't full. It's a beautiful place.
Laurie Auditorium at Trinity University
"The Captain General" opened the show. This march number was composed by Lieutenant Colonel Sir Vivian Dunn for performance on December 19, 1949, when His Majesty King George VI, then the Captain-General of the Royal Marines, dined with the officers of the Corps.

As soon as the band started playing, I noticed there were no strings, only a string bass. This begged the question, what is the difference between a symphonic band and a symphony orchestra. I found a pretty good answer on music.stackexchange.com under "Music Practice and Theory."
Orchestra generally refers to any ensemble with sections of bowed string instruments. This can be further broken down into String Orchestra to include only the stringed instruments, and Symphony Orchestra incorporating winds and percussion.
Band, outside the idiom of follk and pop music, generally refers to an ensemble of wind instruments plus percussion section, with or without a string bass. Brass Bands are mostly popular in Europe, and contain the above without woodwind instruments. For those ensembles that include woodwinds, there exist other terms of questionable interchangeability: Concert Band and Symphonic Band are generally used in school music programs with too many musicians for a single ensemble. (Typically, the Symphonic Band is held to a higher level of performance than the Concert Band.) Additionally, Wind Ensemble is usually held to the highest level of performance, and in most cases contains only one player per part. 
A wide variety of music followed: 

  • "God's Country" by Rossano Galante; 
  • "A Festival Prelude," by Alfred Reed;  
  • "The Pride of the Wolverines," by John Philip Sousa (dedicated to the Mayor and people of Detroit); 
  • "Punchinello," by Alfred Reed; 
  • "When the Last Trumpet Calls," by Charles L. Booker, Jr. (this piece was commissioned by Dr. Jose Garza, one of the orchestra members, and dedicated to his mother, Senora Hortencia P. Garza - today's concert was the first time this piece had ever been played); 
  • "Hail to the Spirit of Liberty," by John Philip Sousa; 
  • "The Genius of Paul Simon," by Paul Simon (a medley of five selections associated with Simon and Garfunkel); 
  • "Parade of Tall Ships," by Jay A. Chattaway
  • "Eternal Father, Strong to Save," by Claude T. Smith
  • "In the Miller Mood," Arr. Warren Barker (a collection of tunes dating back to the Era of Swing when Glenn Mille and his band ruled); and 
  • "Resplendent Glory," by Rossano Galante.

San Antonio Symphonic Band Concert

In addition to the band's music director, two guest conductors took the stage today: Tom Rhodes and John Bridges, both had been part of the San Antonio Symphonic Band team in the past. Also introduced, and sitting in the same row with us was the composer of "When the Last Trumpet Calls." After his composition was played, he gave the band a standing ovation and two thumbs up.

Alfred Tapia, Music Director
All in all, it was a wonderful two-hour concert. Had we known what the raffle prizes were, we would have bought some tickets!! After the intermission, raffle tickets were drawn. Third prize was a tour of breweries and two bags that must have had some brewskis in them. Second prize was a 50" Samsung flat-screen TV, and first prize was two round-trip Southwest Airlines tickets to anywhere Southwest Airlines flies. How did we miss that raffle??

When the concert wrapped up, dinner was next. The 410 Diner on Broadway is where we decided to eat. In January, Bob took me to the diner because he thought I'd like it. He was right! The food, the service, the ambiance are all good. Here are photos of the 410 Diner. 

Bob in front of 410 Diner on Broadway
Interior of 410 Diner

Crazy 410 Diner bathroom decor!

So you can't beat that for a good day. We came home, relaxed and watched HGTV for the evening. 

Good night, all. Travel Bug out.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please let me know what you think, your experiences, and constructive criticism to make this blog stronger.