Members of the National Capital Band traveled to the Salvation Army’s Camp Happyland, in central Virginia, on 9 July 2005, for a day of instruction and demonstration at the annual summer Music Conservatory held at the camp. This is a traditional summer engagement for the band. The band’s musical director, Bandmaster James Anderson, who serves as the Music Director for the National Capital and Virginia Division, is also the director of the Music Conservatory.
NCB members arrived around 10:00 a.m., and gathered in the Music Conservatory building, where the Washington Band was rehearsing in the main rehearsal room. The remainder of the 48 conservatory students (who were were also involved in various rehearsals at the time) gathered in the main rehearsal room and the members of the NCB who were present were assigned different groups to conduct individual lessons and master classes.
Following about an hour of hands-on instruction by members of the NCB, everyone adjourned to the Dining Hall for lunch. During the meal, it was noted that NCB principal cornet Ian Anderson was celebrating his birthday. A cake was brought out, and Ian’s son gave him a special surprise, accompanied by much laughter from the group.
After lunch, the NCB and conservatory returned to the conservatory building, where the NCB gave a mini-concert in the main rehearsal room. Students from the top two of the three conservatory bands were given the opportunity to join with the NCB and run through some of the items they had been working on during the conservatory. A highlight was NCB principal trombone (and former bandmaster) Stephen Bulla taking the baton to conduct his own arrangement of Shout to the Lord, recently published in the American Instrumental Ensemble Series.
Brass Crest Staff Report