The College of Eastern Utah hosts the U.S. Navy Band in concert from Washington, D.C. on Friday, Feb. 29 at 7:30 p.m. in the Bunnell-Dmitrich Athletic Center. Co-sponsors for this event are Peczuh Printing, the Sun Advocate & Emery County Progress.
The United States Navy Band has been the Navy’s premier musical organization since 1925. The Band is directed by Captain George N. Thompson, the 12th officer to hold this position. Located in the Sail Loft at the historic Washington Navy Yard, the Band presents honors at official ceremonies and memorial services in addition to performing hundreds of public concerts annually throughout the Washington metropolitan area and around the country. Recognized as “The World’s Finest,” the Band features some of the nation’s top musicians and performs a wide variety of music ranging from classical orchestral works to original arrangements of current popular favorites, as well as traditional marches and patriotic fare.
Congress established the U.S. Navy Band on March 4, 1925. During its 80 years of service, the Band has become associated with events of national and international significance. The Band has participated in 20 presidential inaugurals and appears at national dedications and memorial services, recently playing a vital role in the State Funeral for President Ronald Reagan.
From its earliest days, the Navy Band has been associated with distinguished celebrities. In 1929, it took to the airwaves with Arthur Godfrey on NBC’s “Hour of Memories” radio show. Lt. Robert Taylor and Lt.(j.g.) Gene Kelly were featured performers on “The Navy Hour” radio program, which the Band produced for astounding 23 years from 1945-1968. More recently, the Band has had the honor to perform with Academy Award honorees such as Ernest Borgnine, Tony Curtis and Gregory Peck. The Band continues to be a presence on network radio and television, including a performance of “America the Beautiful” in 2002 that was broadcast nationally by the NFL prior to each game during opening week.
Internationally, the Navy Band has taken Navy Music around the world. The Band has appeared at military tattoos and festivals in Oslo, Stockholm and Quebec City. The Band also performed in 1996 at the 300th Anniversary of the Russian Fleet in St. Petersburg and at The Baltic International Festival of the Fleets in Kaliningrad, Russia.
The Navy Band is at the forefront of music education. In addition, the Band is in constant demand by the nation’s foremost musical education organizations, such as the American Bandmasters Association and The Midwest Clinic – An International Band and Orchestra Conference.
The Navy Band occupies a position of national prominence as both a service tradition and a distinguished musical organization.
Admission to the concert is free, but a ticket is required. See Greg Benson in the Reeves Building for a ticket. “The college has previously hosted successful concerts by the Army Field Band (2003) and Marine Band (2004). This month’s concert by the Navy Band will certainly follow in that tradition. I hope you will be able to attend and will help spread the word throughout our community,” Benson said.