We Honor a Great Legacy
It is well known that the concert band has served the public well since the age of the John Philip Sousa Band. Sousa set the standard of educating the general public musically while entertaining them at the same time. He brought the latest music to his audiences; both popular and classical. In the early part of this century the town band could be found in almost every hamlet. These bands brought the music of the world to the citizens through concerts in the parks, parades, and music for special occasions. Over the last twenty years interest in community bands and semi-professional bands has grown by leaps and bounds. There are almost 30 of these bands functioning in the state of Washington, and once again the music of the world is being performed live for music lovers everywhere.
In 1993, Dr. Keith Eide held a meeting with several musicians in the area who had expressed an interest in forming a concert band that would attract expert musicians from Seattle to the Canadian Border. It was envisioned that these experienced musicians would be able to perform at, or near, a professional level; the level of musicianship needed to present the best in concert band music which would be both fun to play and enjoyable for the listener. From these discussions North Cascades Concert Band was established.
Dr. Keith Eide, Founder and Director Emeritus
Goals and accomplishments
In the almost fifteen years following the initial meeting, a number of goals have been accomplished. A core group of some 55 members, from Blaine to Renton has been recruited. In 1995 the NCCB was incorporated as a not-for-profit organization. The mailing list has grown to almost 2000 interested individuals. Businesses sponsorship has increased to include large corporations as well as a number of small local firms. In 2002 the NCCB applied for and received a grant for support from the Washington Commission for the Arts.
The NCCB Is Recognized
The NCCB has established a regular concert season and concerts have included a number for first-rate soloists. The concert venues regularly range from Blaine and Nooksack, to Bellingham and Burlington, to Mt. Vernon, Anacortes and Arlington. The North Cascades Concert Band was recently honored by being selected to present a concert at the Northwest Music Educator's Conference in Bellevue, a convention attracting some 2000 music educators from six states.This year, the NCCB was selected to perform at the grand opening of the new Arlington Performing Arts Center. The NCCB has come a long way and is realizing its goal "presenting the best in band music at a professional level."
Dreams For the Future
To date, the success of the NCCB has been accomplished through diligent financing, dedicated individuals, and enthusiastic audiences. Our future plans include starting a modest music library ( we would like to purchase our music, rather than borrow it); and we would like to reward and recognize many individuals who have contributed special skills and expertise in the areas of advertising, program design, music arranging, record keeping and bookkeeping. Downstream plans include sponsoring a concerto competition with the idea of rewarding worthy high school musicians in the area with scholarships. We would also like to aid the Burlington High School music program to compensate for the use of their band room for practice, and the use of their percussion instruments for rehearsals and concerts. Ideally, the NCCB would participate in the maintenance of those instruments we use and assist with the purchase of new instruments that neither group now owns.
A Partnership In Music
There are many bands from communities across the nation that have solved the problems listed above and have been able to continue with sponsorship by interested corporations, businesses and individuals. It is our intention to explore all avenues of support to raise enough money to guarantee the North Cascades Concert Band a solid financial future.
How You Can Take Part
Please lend your support. There will be many, besides the band members, who will be thankful to those who have helped bring the Best in Band Music to Northwest Washington. Mail, phone ,e-mail, or Facebook North Cascades Concert Band) us so that we can know of your interest and put you on our mailing list. Most assuredly, we would be grateful if you enclosed a check for any amount and mailed it to the North Cascades Concert Band, P.O. Box 5141, Bellingham, WA 98227-5141.