King Band wraps up winter season

April 7 concert will feature songs with international focus

The third and final indoor concert for the 2019 winter season by the Karl L. King Municipal Band of Fort Dodge will be held at 3:30 p.m. on April 7 in the Decker Auditorium on the campus of Iowa Central Community College in Fort Dodge. There is no admission charge, since these concerts are provided by the city of Fort Dodge for everyone’s enjoyment. Conductor Jerrold P. Jimmerson has once again planned an enjoyable program of band music. Dr. David Klee serves as the Assistant Conductor of the band, and Paul Bloomquist will be the band’s announcer.

This April concert serves a two-fold purpose each year. The first will be the presentation of the Karl L. King scholarships. Several talented students will audition during the day, and the winners will be announced during the afternoon concert. Winners will be recognized with either $500 scholarships to Iowa Central Community College or a $1,000 scholarship to any four-year Iowa college or university. Providing the funds for these awards is the King Band Scholarship fund, along with Peggy and the late Tom Dowd, and Dr. Greg Olson in memory of his and his wife’s parents. All persons who audition will be invited to join in playing one selection with the Band during the concert, and the major scholarship recipient will perform their award-winning solo.

The second feature of the concert coincides with Iowa Central Community College’s Focus series. This year, the college has chosen the country of Viet Nam for its cultural emphasis, and several selections on the program will reflect that focus in music.

Compositions by the band’s namesake, Karl L. King, on this hour-long concert will include his 1930 march, “Youth and Progress” and his 1919 Chinese intermezzo, “Ung-Kung-Foy-Ya.” Other march selections include Andre Turlet’s “French National Defile” and Carl Teike’s “Old Comrades.”

The afternoon’s classical offering features Franz von Suppe’s 1867 overture, “Jolly Robbers.” Although not as well-known as some of his other compositions like “The Light Cavalry” or “Poet and Peasant,” this overture is colorful, robust and descriptive of von Suppe’s creative style, making it a delight for performers and audiences alike.

Three compositions will focus on the Viet Nam era. First will be highlights from the Broadway musical, “Miss Saigon.” Composed by the same song-writing team that gave us the popular 1985 musical, “Les Miserables,” it is based on Puccini’s 1904 opera “Madame Butterfly.” It tells the tragic tale of a doomed romance involving an Asian woman abandoned by her American lover. The setting of the plot is relocated to 1970’s Saigon during the Vietnam War, and “Madame Butterfly’s” story of marriage between an American lieutenant and a geisha is replaced by a romance between a United States Marine and a seventeen-year-old South Vietnamese girl. The musical premiered in London in 1989, and opened on Broadway in New York in 1991.

There will also be two tributes to the service men and women from the Viet Nam era, with the playing of “Reflections from the Wall” and “Black Granite March.” The concert will conclude in the traditional way with the playing of our National Anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner.” In case of inclement weather, the concert may be cancelled. Any announcement will be made on the band’s website at www.karlking.us or on the Karl L. King Municipal Band’s facebook page.

The next performance by the band will be the traditional Memorial Day ceremonies on Monday morning, May 27, at Veteran’s Memorial Park. The summer series of concerts will again be held on eight Sunday evenings during June and July, beginning on June 9, and lasting through July 28, at the Karl L. King Band Shell in Oleson Park.

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