U.S. Air Force Band brings music of hope

U.S. Air Force Band brings music of hope The United States Air Force Band, "America's Band," will be in Vermillion Oct. 14 to present a musical tribute to American heroism and unity as part of a 16-day concert tour through the upper Midwest.

Sponsored by America's Shrine to Music Museum, the concert begins at 7 p.m. in Slagle Auditorium on the campus of The University of South Dakota. The performance features the world-renowned Concert Band and Singing Sergeants in an evening of family entertainment.

Patriotism will abound in this program of overtures, marches, and popular music that reveal the technical virtuosity and inspired artistry of this prestigious organization. According to Colonel Lowell E. Graham, the ensemble's commander and conductor, the mission of The United States Air Force Band has never been more important.

"Music is a powerful tool for delivering our strong American message; we must be in full view of the nation," said Graham. "What America needs now is what we do best." As an integral part of the military community in Washington, DC, members of the band bring first-hand knowledge of the recent tragedy as well the unique perspective of men and women in uniform who have come together as a family in the nation's capital."

"What we have learned is that we must reach beyond ourselves and embrace what is truly important to each of us. What we have experienced will always come out in our music, and hopefully this will help our audiences come together as a nation," said bassoonist and concert band manager Chief Master Sergeant Danny Phipps.

Concerts by the 60-year-old-organization regularly end with wall-to-wall applause � the entire audience standing in appreciation of a well-played concert. For the musicians, a concert by "America's Band" is more significant than simply playing a few notes and putting smiles on a few faces.

"It's a deep feeling of satisfaction when I know that we've awakened an audience's American spirit, healed heavy hearts, and rejuvenated community and national pride," said trumpeter Technical Sergeant Kenneth Oedemann.

The Pledge of Allegiance and America the Beautiful will bookend this program that reflects our rich American heritage and celebrates the triumph of the American spirit.

For information about how to obtain free tickets, please call America's Shrine to Music Museum at 605-677-5306. The concert is free and open to the public.

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