May 31-June 4, 2023
Dr. Russel Mikkelson, Conductor
Members of the All-American Alumni Band convened in Lexington Kentucky for three fabulous events:
- Friday night, June 2nd, concert at the Frederick Douglas High School Auditorium in Lexington, KY
- Saturday morning, June 3rd, Main Street Parade in Danville, KY
- Saturday afternoon, June 3rd, Great American Brass Band (GABB) Festival in Danville, KY
The Friday night Concert at Frederick Douglas High School Auditorium in Lexington was headlined by esteemed trombonist, Wycliffe Gordon,’84-Georgia. His amazing skill was showcased in his original piece, “Me We”. Wycliffe also teamed up with Deborah Yates, ’78 CO, and performed his original trombone/flute duet, “Island Boy”.
David Lang, ’83 Iowa, was one of the featured accomplished soloists of the evening. He performed the euphonium solo, Brilliante, by Peter Graham without limits…it was incredible!
Deborah Yates, ’78, CO, was featured in the Peter Kleine Schaars arrangement of Children of Sanchez. Her breathtaking solo was one of the highlights of the concert.
Other soloists include Lydia Vickers ’81 WV on tenor sax who played the fantastic solo in Chick Correa’s “Spain”, Rich Trelease, ’74 IL, who delivered the outstanding drum solo in “Sing, Sing, Sing”.
Kim Scharnberg, ’77 IA, arranged a Scott Joplin ragtime piece for The All-American Alumni Band called “The Cascades”. This piece was so fun and true to the feel of “Joplin”.
The Band played a tribute for Steven Gage (also written by Kim Scharnberg) called “Goodnight for Home”. Steven Gage was a very beloved guest conductor of the All-American Alumni Band who recently passed away.
The success of the the whole weekend was due in large part to Dr Russel Mikkelson’s ability to pull everything together in such a short amount of time.
On Saturday morning, June 3rd, the All-American Alumni Band traveled to Danville, Ky to participate in the 33rd year of the very popular Great American Brass Band (GABB) Festival . This ever-growing festival attracts bands of all genres from across the country.
The band assembled at Constitution Square and marched in the GABB Festival’s Main Street Parade.
At two o’clock, the band took a substantial time slot on the Main Stage and delivered an incredible concert. The same soloists who were featured in the Lexington concert were featured again, only this time, Chad Wilt ’88, KY played the fantastic tenor sax solo in Chick Corea’s “Spain”.
After the full band was finished , a 17 piece jazz ensemble comprised of All-American Alumni Band members took over the stage along with Wycliffe Gordon. They put on an amazing concert of Wycliffe’s original jazz charts which ended the musical portion of the weekend.