Musicians wanted for Bandemonium

Concert band rehearsal nights start Monday

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Bandemonium is once again looking for musicians who play woodwind, brass or percussion instruments, and who read music to join the Salt Spring Concert Band.

Bandemonium has been providing a place for musical camaraderie through the Salt Spring Concert Band since 1993. Wendy Milton, the band’s co-founder with husband/trumpeter Derrick, has once again taken the helm as music director after a 20-year hiatus.

According to a press release from the group, one of Milton’s first goals is to recruit more players. The band needs musicians who play woodwind (flute, clarinet, saxophone), brass (trumpet, French horn, baritone, trombone, tuba) and percussion instruments.

“Almost 1,000 musicians have found a musical home with Bandemonium in its 27-year history. In recent years membership has dwindled, so it is time, once again, to rejuvenate the band’s ranks,” the press release explains.

Bandemonium has always welcomed high school students, and for many years the band’s numbers were augmented by student musicians from Gulf Islands Secondary School’s International Program.

The original, larger membership, with balanced instrumentation, allowed the Miltons to program all styles of music in those early years. Once again Wendy hopes to rehearse and/or program music to meet the needs of all members — some easier selections to allow the inexperienced players to fully participate, and allow the whole group to focus on musicality, and some challenging works to keep the experienced players happy.

Milton brings decades of musical experience to Bandemonium. She graduated with music degrees from the University of Toronto, but feels that her real education came from playing with dozens of music and theatre groups in the Toronto area. She founded the University of Guelph Concert Winds, and taught music at the elementary, high school and university level. But her first love is for teaching privately, which she continues to do at her home base — Island Winds Music Studio.

Milton is currently the music director for exitStageLeft Productions, who have just completed a sold-out run of Beauty and the Beast at ArtSpring.

Bandemonium rehearses Monday nights from 7:15 to  9 p.m. in the SIMS music room,  beginning this Monday Sept. 9.

Anyone interested in joining Bandemonium and having some musical fun is asked to contact Wendy at islandwinds@telus.net or 250-537-4654.

For more on this story, see the September 4, 2019 issue of the Gulf Islands Driftwood newspaper, or subscribe online.

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