History

A Short History of the Festival

2011

The Festival of New Hampshire Community Bands began in 2011 with the invitation of six bands to perform at the Outing Club Indoor Facility in New London. The inaugural festival participants included:

  • ProgramsKearsarge Community Band
  • Temple Band
  • Hopkinton Town Band
  • Baker Valley Oktoberfest Band
  • Windham Concert Band
  • Upper Valley Community Band

At the conclusion of the concert all of the remaining band members joined in a “massed bands” performance under the leadership of Ernie Mills, director of band music at the Kearsarge Regional High School. Maestro Mills chose “National Emblem” by E.E.Bagley and “Ashokan Farewell” by Jay Ungar.

2012

At the conclusion of the First Annual Festival there was almost universal agreement that we should do it again, and so in 2012 the Second Annual Festival was held at the same location. Because of the demand from NH community bands the number of bands was increased to eight, and the participating bands included:

  • BannerKearsarge Community Band
  • Lyme Town Band
  • Nelson Town Band
  • Strafford Wind Symphony
  • Temple Band
  • Windham Concert Band
  • Hopkinton Town Band
  • Upper Valley Community Band

Ernie Mills again led the massed bands in two numbers, “Let Evening Come” by Robert Sheldon and “British Eighth” by Zo Elliott.

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2013

For the Third Annual Festival in 2013 the eight bands participating included:

  • Lyme Town Band
  • Temple Band
  • Hopkinton Town Band
  • Carter Mountain Brass Band
  • Kearsarge Community Band
  • Seacoast Wind Ensemble
  • Nelson Town Band
  • Windham Concert Band

At the conclusion of this concert the massed bands were led by Max Culpepper, former director of bands at Dartmouth College. Maestro Culpepper chose Sousa’s “Semper Fidelis,” the first movement, ‘Chiconne’, from the “First Suite for Military Band” by Gustav Holst, and “Flourish for Winds” by Ralph Vaughn Williams.

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2014

The 2014 version of the Festival of New Hampshire Community Bands saw an enthusiastic array of bands and an appreciative audience. The participating bands were:

  • The Nelson Town Band – Nelson, NH
  • Moulton’s Band – Sanbornton, NH
  • New Horizons Band of the Lakes Region – Belmont, NH
  • Hopkinton Town Band – Hopkinton, NH
  • Kearsarge Community Band – New London, NH
  • Upper Valley Community Band – Hanover, NH
  • Windham Concert Band – Windham, NH
  • Seacoast Wind Ensemble – Portsmouth, NH

massed 2014We were particularly pleased to welcome Rick Cook as our conductor of the massed bands. Rick, who has long roots to New London, is presently the director of music at Southern New Hampshire University. Under his direction the 250 musicians in the massed bands performed “Salvation is Created” by Pavel Tschesnodoff, a Williams arrangement of “1812 Overture”, and Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever”.

2015

The Fifth Annual Festival of NH Community Bands once again featured eight bands, including:

  • Moulton’s Band – Sanbornton, NH
  • Lyme Town Band – Lyme, NH
  • Baker Valley Town Band – Plymouth, NH
  • Hopkinton Town Band – Hopkinton, NH
  • Kearsarge Community Band – New London, NH
  • Upper Valley Community Band – Hanover, NH
  • Windham Concert Band – Windham, NH
  • Seacoast Wind Ensemble – Portsmouth, NH

The massed bands were directed by Andrew Boysen, Jr. who is the director of music at the University of New Hampshire. Andrew chose three pieces for performance:

  • Flourish for Wind Band – Ralph Vaughan Williams
  • Song for Friends – Larry Deahn
  • American the Beautiful – arr. Carmen Dragon

Massed 2015

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