Throughout the region, musicians gather in their local bands to bring live performances to their communities.
In Waunakee on June 23, four area bands will join the Waunakee Community Band for a musical extravaganza of sorts.
The Waunakee Community Band Festival will feature performances from bands who regularly perform in their home communities of Beaver Dam, the Pardeeville-Portage area, Reedsburg and Sun Prairie.
Waunakee band director Jan Tweed said the festival has two purposes.
“One, we can share music with other groups that are like us, but we don’t get to hear. And the audience has the opportunity to hear bands other than Waunakee’s own band,” Tweed said. “It’s just fun to listen to others who are doing the same thing we are.”
The musical groups will perform a variety of music, Tweed said, including marches, overtures, Broadway medleys and songs from popular movies.
Some of the bands perform year-round; others, like the Waunakee Community Band, play just in summer. Tweed said those who play throughout the year have time to build a larger repertoire.
The bands range in sizes. Waunakee’s has 74 members; the smallest is the Dual County Community Band from the Pardeeville and Portage area with 31 members.
One has been in existence for nearly five decades. The Waunakee Community Band is now in its 34th year.
“Little did I think... in 1985, with this little rag tag group we had, I’d still be doing this 34 years later,” Tweed said.
The Waunakee Community Band’s performances are free, and the band does not set out a hat to collect donations. Funding for sheet music, performance programs, instrument maintenance and replacement and other supplies comes from community groups and supporters, Tweed said.
The June 23 Community Band Festival will begin at noon at the Waunakee High School Performing Arts Center, where Rocky Rococo will serve pizza. The Waunakee Community Band will perform at 1 p.m., followed by performances from the Sun Prairie, Beaver Dam, Dual County and Reedsburg bands.
All five will come together in a finale with a Massed Band performance at 4:30 p.m.
“Hopefully together,” Tweed said, adding they’ll play a march and “On Wisconsin” to end the show.
“It’s a special day, not only for the performing bands, but to be able to bring other groups in for people to hear and enjoy at their leisure. It’s a special day for the performers and the audience,” Tweed said.