The National Capital Band began its 2004 – 2005 season in traditional fashion with a retreat held at the Salvation Army’s Camp Happyland in central Virginia. This is the first season for the band under its new conductor, Bandmaster James B. Anderson, named to the position last May. The retreat serves as a kick-off for the season, providing time for rehearsal of new repertoire, spiritual support, and fellowship.
Following a pattern established several years ago, the 2004 retreat featured rehearsal sessions on Friday evening (10 September) and Saturday morning. Following the conclusion of the Saturday morning sessions, many of the members travelled to the home of retired NCB cornetist Don Stewart for a time of fellowship. Bandmaster Anderson devoted the Friday rehearsal to Christmas music, as one of the major events on this year’s NCB schedule is a Christmas concert in early December with special guest Carol Jaudes, a Salvationist and professional Broadway entertainer.
The band also used the weekend to welcome several new members to the group, as well as some who were returning after some time absent. Returning after two years at the College for Officers Training in Atlanta is former Band Sergeant Mike Harris, now commissioned as a Captain and serving with his wife as corps officers in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Captain Harris, as well as being a strong member of the bass section, is a great asset to the spiritual mission of the band. The band also welcomed back Tammi Hewitt to the percussion section, returning after a year in Toronto.
One of the great assets of the National Capital Division music program is the strong Divisional Youth Band. This year’s attendees at the retreat included two players who have been “called up” from the Youth Band, Danielle Ashton (second cornet) and Elizabeth Schramm (first horn). Another new member in the horn section is Captain Jeanne Shannon, who serves with her husband as corps officer in Williamsburg, Virginia. The band also welcomed Captain Curtiss Hartley and his daughter Megan, who joined the cornet section on solo and second, respectively. Captain Hartley has recently been appointed to the publications department at National Headquarters as editor of the Young Salvationist magazine. Terry Hetherington, formerly a member of the Pasadena Tabernacle Band in California (under the direction of Bandmaster Anderson), has joined the euphonium section, having moved to the Washington area as the result of a job transfer.
Source: Brass Crest Staff Report