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Storm Lake Municipal Band Season-Opening Concert Will be Next Month

May 23, 2022 12:38pm

The long, long tradition of community band music will be renewed this season, as the Storm Lake Municipal Band takes to the Sunset Park bandshell on June 5th. Guests for that first concert can also enjoy a lineup of classic cars at the park.

Concerts continue each Sunday at 2pm through July 10th – with the exception of the Star Spangled Spectacular concert July 3rd when the band will perform at 5:30pm, leading into the evening concert by the popular Iowa pop group The Nadas.

All of the Municipal Band shows are free to the public. Seating is limited, so feel free to bring a blanket or lawn chair. Veteran performer and music educator Tom Musel will direct this season.

“The band plays a pretty good mix of pieces throughout the season,” says Matt Pearson of the band’s board of directors. “There will be marches, hymns, symphonic pieces, pop tunes, something for just about everyone. Movie and showtunes are always popular. We throw in a couple of Karl King marches, since he’s the Iowa March King, and has a history with the local band.”

Typically about 35 players perform each week with the Storm Lake Municipal Band. They range in age from high schoolers to veterans well into retirement years. “It’s a blast to have all these age groups coming together. It’s a great chance for the younger players to see that they can continue playing and enjoy a lifelong love of music. For many of our adult members, this is the only chance they get to play their instrument and perform for people,” Pearson says. “Also, it’s neat to see how some of the more experienced musicians can act as mentors to the youngest ones.”

The band has been a part of the fabric of the Storm Lake community for longer than anyone can remember. In fact, the first band in Storm Lake was formed in 1875, only a few years after the city was founded, Pearson notes. The band officially became a municipal entity in 1935 by a citywide vote.

“It’s a great tradition in Storm Lake, and in fact, the state of Iowa has a real tradition in its community bands. It’s an honor for our band members today to be able to continue that tradition,” he says. “For the public, it’s a chance experience live music of different styles and eras. It’s a nice way to spend an hour outdoors on a Sunday afternoon –a pleasant social outing, and also an opportunity those who come out to be part of the tradition.”

New musicians are welcome to join the band at any time. Message through the Storm Lake Municipal Band Facebook page for more information, or email the director at musel_thomas@yahoo.com.

“For students in the area high schools especially, it can be a nice change of pace. They are used to practicing the same songs for months leading into a concert. The municipal band has one rehearsal per concert, with different music to play every week,” Pearson says. “It helps them stay in practice and helps with their sight-reading skills.”

(thanks to City of Storm Lake communications coordinator Dana Larsen)