Saturday, December 9, 2023

Program: "Holiday Pops!"

Holiday Pops!

Saturday, December 9, 2023 • 7:00 PM

The Concord Band

James O‘Dell, Music Director and Conductor
Melenie Diarbekirian, Artistic Director, Commonwealth Ballet Company

View Livestream


Overture to a Winter FestivalJames Curnow
Suite on Celtic Folk Songstrans. by Tomohiro Tatebe
I. March; II. Air; III. Reel.
Beachscapes, III. ScarboroughRoger Cichy
Suite from The NutcrackerP.I. Tchaikovsky
arr. James Curnow
Miniature Overture; March; Arabian Dance; Chinese Dance; Russian Dance; Dance of the Reed Pipes; Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy; Waltz of the Flower.
Commonwealth Ballet Company
Adele Anderson, Livvy Capello, Mallory Devlin, Angelina Feng, Sage Gendreau-Distler, Cecilia Lapinski, Heather Lardizabal, Nika Lysyj, Snejanna Ostrerov, Elle Ricker, Marina Ricker, Lucia Sabatelli, Nahia Sáenz de Viguera Washa, Maddie Smith, Ava Yadav.


Three New England Caricatures, I. Jolly Old RogerJames Curnow
Three Moods of Hanukkaharr. Lennie Niehaus
Wenceslas VariationsJay Dawson
An Irving Berlin Christmasarr. Warren Barker
Santa Stroll
Saxophone Quartet
Tim Moyer (soprano), David Southard (alto),
Judy Piermarini (tenor), Dan Shields (baritone).
Sleigh RideLeroy Anderson
Christmas Sing-A-Longarr. James D. Ployhar
Jake Kinney, song leader
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing; O Come, All Ye Faithful; Deck the Halls;
Silent Night; The First Noel; Joy to the World; We Wish You a Merry Christmas.
Auld Lang Synearr. William Toland

Melenie Diarbekirian, Artistic Director of the Commonwealth Ballet Company

Melenie Diarbekirian

Melenie Diarbekirian received her early training from Acton School of Ballet, was a member of Commonwealth Ballet Company from 2004-2007, and went on to earn a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance Performance from the Boston Conservatory in 2011. She started out her professional career with Urbanity Dance and currently dances with Pantos Project Dance, Luminarium Dance Company, and Turning Key Dance. While in school and throughout her career, she has performed works by prominent choreographers including José Limón, Alwin Nikolais, Thang Dao, Larry Keigwin, and in Reagle Music Theatre’s production of Oklahoma! She has performed in venues such as the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, the Jacob’s Pillow Inside/Out Stage, events like the APAP Conference in New York City, TEDxCambridge at the Boston Opera House, and many other festivals and colleges along the East Coast. Diarbekirian serves on the faculty at the Acton School of Ballet and guest teaches throughout greater Boston and New England. Diarbekirian previously served as CBC’s Ballet Mistress for five seasons, and is grateful to be in her second year as Artistic Director.

Commonwealth Ballet Company

Commonwealth Ballet delivers artistic and entertaining performances in a welcome, family-friendly style. This company of pre-professional dancers is drawn from across metro-west Massachusetts and, in addition to a much-loved production of The Nutcracker, offers audiences many opportunities to enjoy ballet throughout the year. Commonwealth Ballet develops, fosters and promotes the performance and appreciation of classical and contemporary ballet. CBC endeavors to maintain strong ties with the communities it serves, provides a sustainable educational opportunity for young dancers, and demonstrates the highest level of artistic quality.

Friday, November 17, 2023

Commonwealth Ballet Company performs The Nutcracker

Commonwealth Ballet Company

The Concord Band will present its Holiday Pops! concert at 7:00 pm, Saturday December 9, 2023 at the 51 Walden Performing Arts Center in Concord.

The program features dancers from the Commonwealth Ballet Company of Acton, performing James Curnow’s arrangement The Nutcracker Suite, based on the all-time holiday classic by composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.

The Band has moved the starting time to 7:00 pm and invites families to enjoy the concert together.

The program, appealing to all ages, also includes a suite of Celtic Folk Songs, a Hanukah medley, two more delightful Curnow arrangements of traditional music themes, a holiday sing along, and Cambridge composer Leroy Anderson's Sleigh Ride, a perennial audience favorite. There may also be a special visitor!

The concert will have open seating with complimentary refreshments at intermission as well as before and after the concert. Tickets are available from Ticket Stage at at $25 for adults and $10 for children.

Additional information about the Concord Band is at and about the Commonwealth Ballet Company at

Purchase Tickets Now

Thursday, November 16, 2023

Concord Tree Lighting & Parade

Due to forecasts for rain showers Concord's Tree lighting festivities have been canceled.

All are welcome at the Town of Concord's Annual Tree Lighting on Sunday, December 3, 2023, between the hours of 3:00 and 6:00pm.  This year's event will be host to a variety of outdoor entertainment, a parade and festive store fronts. Santa will make his way down Main Street aboard one of Concord's Fire Trucks to light the Town Tree. 

CB Saxophone Quartet performs at Tree Lighting festival.
(l. to r.) David Southard, John Rabinowitz, Judy Piermarini, Seychelle Dunn-Corbin

The Concord Band will entertain with small ensembles performing in the lobby of the 51 Walden Performing Arts Center. Before the parade, stop by 51 Walden for some music, cookies and cocoa!

Clarinet sextet
4:00 pm
Saxophone quartet
4:30 pm

Monday, November 6, 2023

Holiday Pops!

2023 Holiday Pops! poster

Mark your calendars for Saturday, December 9, at 7:00 pm for the Concord Band Holiday Pops! This program presents the Commonwealth Ballet Company interpretation of James Curnow's arrangement of The Nutcracker Suite by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. The festivities include refreshments, traditional holiday music, new favorites, a sing-along, and a visit from a Very Special Guest!

Please note the new family-friendly starting time. Tickets may be purchased at

Sunday, October 22, 2023

New! Kids' Concert: Bandemonium!

2023 Bandemonium!

Why should adults
have all the fun?

BANDEMONIUM! is an interactive experience with wiggle room for kids. Freeze dance, instrument petting zoo, refreshments included.

Seating is limited, advance tickets are recommended. Purchase tickets by following the QR code link:

Saturday, October 21, 2023

Program: "New England Portraits"

Fall Concert

Saturday, October 21, 2023 • 8:00 PM

The Concord Band
James O’Dell, Music Director and Conductor
John Rabinowitz, Announcer

View Livestream


Chester, Overture for BandWilliam Schuman
Old Home Days
  1. Waltz
  2. a) The Opera House (from “Memories”)
    b) Old Home Days (Chorus)
  3. The Collection
  4. Slow March
  5. London Bridge is Fallen Down!
Charles E. Ives
arr. Jonathan Elkus
North Bridge PortraitStephen Bulla


Three New England CaricaturesJames Curnow
  1. Jolly Old Roger
  2. Polly Van
  3. Captain Kidd
Snapshots of AcadiaAndrew Boysen, Jr.
  1. Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse
  2. Crashing water at Thunder Hole
  3. Calm Water in front of Cadillac Mountain
  4. Sunrise at Acadia
BeachscapesRoger Cichy
  1. Nauset
  2. Rocky Neck
  3. Scarborough


Thanks to Berry Mirrer, video producer; all of the volunteer camera operators; Jonathan Day, audio producer; and Nicki McGachey, live stream producer for this concert. Thanks also to Jean Patterson for preparing the slide show.

Chester, Overture for Band

William Howard Schuman, one of America’s most celebrated and accomplished composers, was born in NYC in 1910, to Samuel and Rachel Schuman. He was named, incidentally, for the 27th President of the United States, William Howard Taft, but his family called him Bill.

He played violin and banjo as a child, and formed a dance band in high school, “Billy Schuman had his Alamo Society Orchestra”, in which he played string bass- and they did local weddings and bar mitzvahs.

While writing popular songs as hobby, (including a staggering 40 in collaboration with the great lyricist Frank Loesser) Schuman entered NYU’s School of Commerce to pursue a business degree—until a fateful day in 1930 when he attended a Carnegie Hall concert of the NY Phil, conducted by Arturo Toscanini that changed his life. He said of that night, “I was astounded at seeing the sea of stringed instruments, everybody bowing together. The visual thing alone was astonishing. But the sound! I was overwhelmed. The very next day, I decided to become a composer.”

And what a career followed: 8 symphonies, the first ever Pulitzer Prize for music in 1943 for his Cantata No. 2, adapted from poems by another great American artist, Walt Whitman, a world-renowned concerto for violin, an opera based on “Casey at the Bat”. He taught composition at Sarah Lawrence, became president of the Julliard School, founded the Julliard String Quartet, became president of Lincoln center, won another Pulitzer in 1985 for half a century of contributions to American music as composer and educator, and received the National Medal for the Arts in 1987.

Inaugurating the 250th anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord, we are pleased to perform for you his 1956 composition, Chester Overture for Band, adapted by the composer from his own orchestral work entitled New England Triptych. It is based on a tune written by arguably the first great homegrown American composer, of European stock, William Billings, first published in 1770. Chester was so popular that it was sung from Vermont to South Carolina, and became THE unofficial anthem of the American Revolution, sung around the campfires of the Continental Army and played by fifers on the march.

You’ll hear the original Billings chorale at the start of the piece, before Schuman breaks it into fragments of intense development which call to mind the struggle and tumult, but also the determination, the yearning for freedom during those difficult Revolutionary War years.

Program notes by John Rabinowitz

Old Home Days

Charles Ives, born in 1874 to a father who was a band leader during the US Civil War, was raised in a prominent Danbury CT family—and went on to become perhaps the first American composer of international renown, and a pioneer in experimental musical techniques, including polytonality, tone clusters, so called ‘chance’ music, and quarter tones.

All delivered in a package of Ives’s favorite musical influences, which included hymns, traditional folk music, town band melodies at holiday parades, fiddlers at Saturday night dances, patriotic songs, parlor ballads and the melodies of Stephen Foster.

To complete the fascinatingly contradictory portrait, Ives’s musical career was a kind of side hustle. He had a parallel and equally successful career running his own… insurance agency! where he pioneered insurance plans for wealthy clients that prefigured many aspects of modern-day estate planning.

Incidentally, there was another great American artist who also worked in the insurance biz: the Pulitzer Prize winning poet Wallace Stevens, born five years after Ives, and who also spent his entire 9-to-5 career at an insurance company in Hartford. CT.

Ives’s music went largely ignored during his lifetime, but in the years since his death in 1954, his reputation has soared, championed by luminaries like Elliot Carter, Aaron Copland, Bernard Herrmann, Gustav Mahler, Leonard Bernstein, Arthur Schoenberg, Igor Stravinsky, John Cage, Frank Zappa and Phil Lesh, bassist for the Grateful Dead, who described Ives as one of his musical heroes. How’s that for irony: an insurance guy praised by one of the Dead.

We will be performing tonight Ives’s charming suite entitled Old Home Days, arranged for Band by Jonathan Elkus, which is both full of Ivesian nostalgia and also has little traces of those characteristic Ives touches: unexpected dissonances, out of kilter rhythms where you least expect them, snatches of familiar tunes heard fleetingly, as though from across a town green: listen especially for “Little Annie Rooney,” “Auld Lang Syne,” “The Girl I left Behind Me,” “London Bridge is Fallen Down!,” even a quotation from Handel’s oratorio “Saul” in the Slow March. And in the Opera House movement, notice how just as the listener gets ready to watch the show as the curtain goes up, Ives diverts the listeners attention to what’s happening OUTSIDE the theater: a village band marching by, and the ringing of church and schoolhouse bells.

Program notes by John Rabinowitz

North Bridge Portrait

After graduating in 1976 from the Berklee College of Music with a degree in composition, Stephen Bulla went on to become the chief arranger for the President’s Own Marine Corps Band in Washington, DC, while also composing music for the celebrated group. When he left in 2010, composer John Williams described Bulla as “one of the most accomplished musicians of his generation.”

In addition to his tenure with the Marine Band, Bulla has composed for, and conducted, the National Capital Band of the Salvation Army, and has served as music director of the New England Brass Band and the Brass of the Potomac.

In 1999, the Concord Band commissioned Bulla to create a piece honoring the colonial heritage of New England. And Bulla responded with his evocative “North Bridge Portrait”, based on authentic musical themes of the American Revolutionary Period.

In his own words, “A slow and ominously quiet introductory section leads to a brisk sea-chantey-like tune, depicting the busy lifestyle of the Colonists. The music then slows, and an expressive setting of Willam Billings’ song ‘America’ is developed and incorporated in the musical tapestry as a tribute to the new England composer’s work. The music concludes with a dramatic recreation of the famous first shot that led the country to war (this time fired by the percussion section), along with a rousing setting of ‘Washington’s March,’ a popular song of that day.”

Contrasting colors and stylistic shifts tracing the historic events surrounding "the shot heard 'round the world," North Bridge Portrait is a memorable experience to play… and we trust, to hear.

Program notes by John Rabinowitz

Three New England Caricatures

Another of our most treasured commission composers is James Curnow, born and raised in Michigan, now living in Kentucky, where he is composer-in-residence (emeritus) on the faculty of Asbury University in Wilmore.

Those of you who have attended our Holiday Pops concerts each year in December are undoubtedly familiar with one of those commissions, Overture to a Winter Festival, which we play joyfully every year without fail, a lyrical Curnow piece written as a retirement gift in 1994 for the Concord Band’s first music director, William Toland. 

And there have been other commissions as well, including 1987’s Five Concord Diversions and 1988’s beautiful Welsh Variants.

Tonight, in the spirit of our New England theme, we’re delighted to be performing Curnow’s evocative Three New England Caricatures, written in 2011 and dedicated to the New England Youth Wind Ensemble.

Written in three movements, “Jolly Old Roger,” “Polly Van,” and “Captain Kidd,” after the infamous 17th century pirate, the piece features many of Curnow’s characteristic flourishes—beautiful melodies, jaunty rhythms, challenging passage work, and, throughout, a myriad of percussion sounds coming from cake pans, frying pans and water bottles.

Program notes by John Rabinowitz

Snapshots of Acadia

Those of you who attended the Band’s 60th Anniversary concert in March of 2019 might recognize the name of our next composer, Andrew Boysen, Professor of Music at the University of New Hampshire where he conducts their wind symphony and teaches conducting and composition. Andy wrote a beautiful piece for us for that former occasion, the Diamond Jubilee Suite, and he traveled down from his native NH to conduct it for us that night, to our great delight.

Tonight we’ll be performing another evocative composition of his entitled Snapshots of Acadia, which features four movements depicting the Bar Harbor Lighthouse, Thunder Hole, Calm Waters in Front of Cadillac Mountain and celebrated Acadia Sunrise. You’ll be treated to a video montage showing selected images of those landmarks, part of the terrific slide presentation put together by Jean Patterson of our horn section, which will help set the mood.

In fact the piece was originally commissioned by the photographer John Morneau, who’s images you’ll see, and the University of Southern Maine Music Academy, on the occasion of their 25th Anniversary. The four movements are based on the word ACADIA, using each of the letters of that word as musical notes (the letter I becoming the note E). The basic melodic cell for the piece is a-c-a-d-e-a, which underpins all four movements.

Program notes by John Rabinowitz


Rhode Island composer Roger Cichy has been a long time friend to the Concord Band, composing commissioned pieces for us for many years, including the 2009 Flowing Pens from Concord, written for the Band’s 50th anniversary, Emblazoned Joy, a fanfare we play before every Fruitlands concert, and The Diamond Baton, a piece celebrating the legacy of Band percussionist Dan Diamond.

Tonight we’re excited to present to you a composition commissioned by The American Band Commissioning Project Consortium, entitled Beachscapes, from 2008.

In his program notes, Roger notes that “each [New England] beach has its’ own personality. Whether the beach tends to draw families with children, or the younger generation or those looking for peace and serenity, each beach has a different feel, character, even a different set of sounds”.

Know for his capacity for taking intangible experience and emotions and turning them into memorable music, Roger sets about in this piece to convey the feel of Nauset Beach on the Cape, with large waves, surfers, beach chowder smells, sea creatures churned up by the heavy surf, and of course sea gulls snatching food-to Rocky Neck Beach in East Lyme, CT, with calmer and warmer waters, gentle rhythmic waves and warm breezes, interrupted only by an Amtrak train streaking by, to Scarborough Beach in Narragansett, RI, a family beach where finding parking is paramount, tons of beach paraphernalia is schlepped back and forth, sand castles are built and destroyed, and the occasional crab interrupts the proceedings.

Program notes by John Rabinowitz

Sunday, October 1, 2023

New England Portraits

2023 Fall Concert Poster

Our Fall Concert, 8pm on October 21, will inaugurate the commemoration of the 250th anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord, upcoming in 2025, featuring Chester Overture for Band by William Schuman, based on Boston composer William Billings’ best known song that became a Revolutionary War patriotic anthem.

Composed in 1956, Schuman expanded the third movement from his New England Tryptich for orchestra and arranged it for concert band. The Concord Band played Chester during the Bicentennial and included the piece on the Band’s 1975 LP. More recently, the Band performed Chester at the 2012 tribute to Music Director Laurate William Toland, who had conceived and conducted the 1975 album.

Maestro James O’Dell has rounded out the theme, New England Portraits, with other pieces inspired by places and events of New England. Four of these pieces feature composers who have written commissions expressly for the Concord Band. 

Andrew Boysen’s Snapshots of Acadia, with movements depicting the Bass Harbor Lighthouse, Thunder Hole, Cadillac Mountain and its famous sunrise, will be presented alongside a video showing selected images of the landmarks. Roger Cichy, who also has conducted his original compositions with the Concord Band, wrote Beachscapes to recognize three beaches, Nauset (Massachusetts), Rocky Neck (Connecticut), and Scarborough (Rhode Island). Stephen Bulla composed North Bridge Portrait about Concord's famous bridge and the "shot heard round the world." Three New England Caricatures was written by James Curnow on a commission from UMass Lowell dedicated to the New England Youth Wind Ensemble. The piece is loaded with interesting percussion sounds such as cake pans, frying pans, and water bottles, comprising three movements: "Old Jolly Roger," "Polly Van," and "Captain Kidd," after the infamous 17th century pirate.

The finale of the program is Old Home Days by Danbury Connecticut-born composer Charles Ives. The multi-movement work is based on hymn tunes, traditional songs, and melodies that might be performed by New England small town bands at parades and country dances. 

The Fall Concert will be held Saturday October 21, 2023 at 8:00 pm at 51 Walden Performing Arts Center in Concord, MA. Admission is free, with a $20 donation requested. The Concord Band is sponsored in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. More information is available on the Band’s website

Thursday, September 21, 2023

New England Portraits

2023 Fall Concert Poster

With the 250th anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord approaching, the Fall Concert by the Concord Band will feature Chester, Overture for Band by William Schuman, based on Boston composer William Billings’ best known song that became a Revolutionary War patriotic anthem.

Maestro James O’Dell rounds out the concert's theme, New England Portraits, with compositions drawing inspirations from New England. The program includes music depicting Maine's Acadia National Park (Boysen); Beachscapes of Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts (Cichy); a quintessential small town fair (Ives); Concord’s own North Bridge (Bulla); and real or imagined characters of New England (Curnow).

The performance will be Saturday October 21, 2023, at 8:00 pm at 51 Walden Performing Arts Center in Concord, Massachusetts. Admission is free, with a donation of $20 per person requested. The Concord Band is sponsored in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. More information is available on the Band’s website

Friday, September 1, 2023

Season Schedule

2023–24 Season Poster

Save the dates!

Upcoming concerts:

Fall ConcertOct. 218pm
Kid's ConcertNov. 52pm
Holiday Pops!Dec. 98pm

Look for more details to be announced!

Saturday, August 12, 2023

If we could give our audiences a standing ovation...

We would! 

It has been a very busy season!

Thank you for coming back to share the joy of music with us. Even though the music is back in full swing, we are still below pre-pandemic income levels. If you can help, please donate to support livestreaming of our concerts.

PayPal Donation

Thank you for your support!

You can also make a donation on the Band’s website.

By mail: Concord Band Association, P.O. Box 302, Concord, MA 01742

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

In Memoriam: June R. Grace

June R. Grace

The Concord Band honors the memory of our beloved band member, June Grace, who passed away in May.

June graduated from University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing and was a public health nurse for the city of Pittsburgh. June met her spouse, Buck, while in school and the couple initially settled in Pittsburgh. After moving to Concord, June worked with the Sudbury Public Health Nursing Association as a school nurse, eventually becoming the Executive Director. After earning a Master of Science degree from Boston University School of Nursing, she worked with the Visiting Nurse Association of the South Shore, then with the Visiting Nurse Association and Hospice of Central Massachusetts as the Vice President of Planning and Development. She was instrumental in opening Central Massachusetts’ first impatient hospice, The Rose Monahan Hospice Home.

June’s interests in writing, music, spirituality, gardening, and reading inspired pursuits ranging from singing in church choir to playing flute in community bands, both in Pittsburgh and Concord. In line with her passion for serving the community, June devoted thousands of volunteer hours to the Rotary Club of Concord as well as the Concord Band.

Recently, June received the highest honor given by Rotary International, the Service Above Self Award, recognizing her dedication promoting two Rotary global grants in Haiti and Kenya, along with her skills as an active volunteer, webmaster, public relations and social media chair, and volunteer extraordinaire for fundraisers.

June joined the Band as a flutist in 1971, shortly after moving to Concord, and served on its Board of Trustees for more than twenty-five years in multiple capacities, most notably as Treasurer. In 1994 she was a member of the Search Committee that hired the Band’s second Music Director, Dr. William McManus. June began the formal organization of the Band’s archives and arranged for their permanent placement at the Concord Public Library and continued to update the collection with archival recordings of Concord Band concerts. 

When June relinquished her position as Treasurer she joined the Board of what is now 51 Walden, the custodial organization for the administration of the Performing Arts Center. In 2011, June received the Concord Band's highest recognition, the Lifetime Service Award

June reminisced that “I converted my husband Buck, who had spent 23 years in the audience, from a fan to a player,” and the Concord Band became an interest they enjoyed together. Of her time with the Concord Band, she said, “It has been an honor to work behind the scenes for the Band. In so doing, one appreciates how much thought, dedication and time it takes to keep the organization running smoothly. The Concord Band is the ideal community organization: friendly, involved musicians playing under superb leaders.... I feel extremely fortunate to have been a part of it.”

Music Director Emeritus Dr. William McManus remembers, "One of the great joys of conducting a community band is to work with people like June Grace. That is, to work with people who enjoy making music with likeminded musicians, who are dedicated and work hard to ensure the success of the band, who are always prepared for rehearsals and concerts, and who are supportive of and a friend to other members of the band. During my years as Music Director of the Concord Band, June consistently displayed all of these qualities and many more. She was truly a joy to know and to work with!"

Music Director James O'Dell recalls, "June was a sparkling gem. With her infectious bright smile and enthusiasm for making music, she always offered her very best at rehearsals, concerts, and other events. My proximity to the flutes (which are seated in the first row near the conductor), made it impossible not to feel her positive energy and joy of playing the flute. After retiring from the band June often commented how much she enjoyed listening to the band from the audience and supporting her friends and colleagues from a lifetime of making music. June and husband Buck, their dedication and many contributions to the Concord Band, will be dearly missed."


Sunday, July 23, 2023

Summer Series Extended to July 26

Band's view of Fruitlands Museum concert audience.
(Photo courtesy Dan Shields.)

Fruitlands Museum added a new concert date, Wednesday July 26, when Music Director James O'Dell and the Concord Band will present a program titled Summer Retrospective.

Music selections will comprise the Best of 2023, featuring audience favorites such as Broadway and motion picture themes, Irving Berlin's patriotic Songs for America, and a Dixieland ensemble rendition of When the Saints Go Marching In. Trumpet soloist Richard Given will perform Academy Award Best Original Song Beauty and the Beast on flugelhorn, and saxophone soloist David Southard will perform the Louis Armstrong and Kenny G mega-hit, What a Wonderful World. Maestro O'Dell rounds out the program with timeless classics, including the overture from Gilbert and Sullivan's Pirates of Penzance, the perennial favorite Radetzky March, Colonel Bogey march from Best Picture and Best Original Score film Bridge on the River Kwai, and majestic Spanish rhythms portrayed in El Camino Real.

Pre-register for faster entry

Audience view of at Fruitland's Museum Concord Band concerts.
(Photo courtesy Catherine Shortliffe.)

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Summer Concert Series at Fruitlands Museum

The Concord Band is back for another summer season on the Fruitlands Museum outdoor stage! The Concord Band will treat concert-goers to a fun program of music comprising timeless classic songs, motion picture scores, Broadway musicals, and popular favorites. Each week presents a new program with different themes,

June 28Disney at the Movies & More
July    5True to be Red, White, and Blue
July  12Outstanding Overtures and Magnificent Marches
July  19Disney at the Movies & More
July  26Summer Retrospective

Gather on the lawn for a picnic concert with stunning sunset views. Bring your blanket, lawn chairs and picnic basket. There is plenty of room on the concert lawn to spread out. Dogs are welcome to join for these picnic concerts and just must remain on leash while on the grounds at Fruitlands.

Concerts are on Wednesday evenings starting at 7:15pm; gates open 5:00pm.

Reservations are encouraged for faster entry. In the event of rain forcing cancellation, ticket holders will be contacted via email in advance of showtime. We will be able to rebook or refund any canceled sales.

Questions? Contact Catherine Shortliffe at

Friday, June 30, 2023

True to be Red, White, and Blue

Due to forecasts for rain showers on Tuesday, live music performances will be held indoors at the 51 Walden Performing Arts Center.

The Concord Band will perform at the Town of Concord's 46th annual Picnic in the Park Independence Day celebration, at Emerson Field 51Walden around 3:15pm on July 4. The theme is "True to be Red White and Blue."

2023 Picnic in the Park

In addition to traditions such as Armed Forces Salute, Star Spangled Spectacular, Irving Berlin's Songs for America, and themes from popular movies, the Band will play two movements from Boston Liberties, composed by Julie Giroux for the Concord Band.

The town is planning a full day of activities, from 11:30 am until 4:30 pm. It features plenty of kid's activities, games, food and entertainment for all ages. Bring your own picnic basket and just relax on the grass listening to live music, or enjoy some of the food from several local nonprofit organizations. It is a great way to celebrate the holiday with family and friends in a relaxing community social event.

Festivities kick off with the children's parade, assembling at the Concord Armory on Everett Street at 11:15am. Decorate your bikes, trikes, baby carriages and wagons in red, white and blue and celebrate the holiday. The parade route is from the Armory through the tree lined alley of the park to the flagpole. The patriotic colors of the parade set the stage for a festive day, celebrating our country's birthday.

Music, food, and games to follow at Emerson Field until 4:30 p.m. Come join your neighbors and show your patriotism in an old fashioned, family fun day. All are welcome!

The music will feature live performances by by Rock a Bye Beats, Southern Rail and capped by the rousing sounds of the Concord Band.

Due to forecasts for rain showers on Tuesday, live music performances will be held indoors in the Performing Arts Center at 51 Walden St.

Monday, June 12, 2023

Dan Diamond Memorial Concert

Dr. Daniel Diamond

The Concord Band will hold a memorial concert for Dan Diamond at 51 Walden Performing Arts Center in Concord on Monday June 12, 2023, at 7:00 pm. Dan was a percussionist and member of the Board of Trustees for more than 50 years, who played a major role in building the Concord Band into the ensembled it is today. The concert will be followed by a reception sponsored by Dan's family.

The memorial concert will be live-streamed at the following link:

Live Stream
7pm, June 12, 2023

Thursday, June 1, 2023

Boston Festival of Bands

The Concord Band performs in the Great Hall of Faneuil Hall.

Saturday, June 10, 2023. Have an outing in Boston shopping, eating, enjoying the city, and listening to some of New England's finest wind ensembles! MetWinds hosts its thirty-third annual Boston Festival of Bands. Hear many talented bands performing throughout the day in the heart of Faneuil Hall near Boston Harbor. Admission is free.

Faneuil Hall, Boston MA
Performance Times
11:00Seacoast Wind Ensemble
12:00Charles River Wind Ensemble
2:00Amherst Community Band
3:00American Band
4:00Chelmsford Community Band
5:00Concord Band

1 Faneuil Hall Square Boston MA 02109

Thursday, May 25, 2023

The Show Must Go Outdoors

The audience was able to spread out and enjoy the music and the landscape during the Concord Band outdoor concert last summer at the 210-acre Fruitlands Museum in Harvard MA.
(photo courtesy Catherine Shortliffe)

Nearly three years since the COVID pandemic shut down public events across the region, local arts groups have adapted by embracing or expanding the use of outdoor performance spaces.

“Creative people are problem-solvers,” said Michael Bobbitt, executive director of the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency that promotes inclusion, education, and diversity in the arts, humanities, and sciences. “Creative makers can make any space a cultural space.”

“For us, it is about forward-thinking,” said Michael Busack, portfolio director of the 210-acre Fruitlands Museum in Harvard, a Trustees of Reservations property. “Our audiences are seeking a meaningful arts experience, but in a safer way. I remember in September 2020, our first outdoor concert was limited to 50 people, including the performers and staff. Afterward people came up to me in tears to say thank you.”

Since then, Fruitlands has continually expanded its 40-year-old outdoor concert program — doubling the number of events from six to 12 in 2022. A similar full schedule of outdoor concerts is planned for 2023.

“Utilizing public outdoor spaces to bring people together is important,” said Bobbitt. “Consumption of the arts at indoor venues is going be vulnerable for a number of years. “From the Berkshires to the oceanfront, Massachusetts has the most amazing diversity of outdoor performance spaces.”

Monday, May 1, 2023

Concord Band Awarded Mass Cultural Council Grant

The Concord Band is pleased to announce the Mass Cultural Council has awarded the band with a Cultural Sector Recovery Grant. These funds will provide much needed relief from financial losses incurred over recent years due to the Covid-19 pandemic. We thank the Mass Cultural Council for their support.

Learn more:

Sunday, April 23, 2023

In Memoriam: Lloyd F. (Buck) Grace

Buck Grace

The Concord Band honors the memory of percussionist Buck Grace. A proud veteran of United States Navy, he served from 1945–1948 as an Aviation Machinist Mate, aboard aircraft carrier USS Valley Forge. After receiving a B.S. in chemical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, Buck's professional career spanned chemical engineering at U.S. Steel, industrial administration at Kennecott Copper Corp., and facilities services management at W. R. Grace & Co.

A talented mechanic, Buck built elaborate model train layouts in his basement and backyard. The garden railroad became a center of entertainment for family and friends, ultimately inspiring fascinating train travel for Buck and his wife, June, throughout the US and abroad.

Decades of intellectual and spiritual gatherings enriched Buck's life with enduring friendships and inspired his unabated curiosity. An avid walker, his quest for optimal aging aligned with his ability to find humor and positivity in life.

Buck displays custom percussion equipment.
A Depression-era upbringing shaped Buck's work ethic and sparked passions including music and a desire for lifelong learning. The son of a musician, Buck’s musical talents extended beyond voice and piano when in his retirement June, who in 1995 was a flutist and member of the Board, invited him to join. He became a percussionist, performing with the group as recently as last summer. Through on-the-job training, he mastered the crash cymbals and many accessory instruments.

Rolling stand base
Buck's mechanical skills were employed for constructing and perfecting unique percussion gadgets. When commercially available cymbal stands proved inadequate, Buck built a rolling base for the commercial stand to accommodate rapid instrument switch-ups that occur frequently in percussion parts.

Buck was highly regarded for his "can-do" spirit and aplomb under pressure. He was renowned for his punctual renditions of the "whip" in Sleigh Ride and remembered by audiences for his humorous performances, front and center, on cymbals and accessories in A Salute to Spike Jones.

Buck was commemorated together with other honorees in the In Tribute Concert on March 4th.

Sunday, April 16, 2023

In Memoriam: Dr. Daniel S. Diamond

Daniel S. Diamond, PhD

Members of the Concord Band mourn the passing of our long time percussionist and board member Dan Diamond. Among his many duties and contributions to the band were fundraising czar, editor of the newsletter, executive producer and publisher of the Band’s audio recordings on CD and video recordings on DVD.

To acknowledge Dan’s many contributions to the Band, he received the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009, and in 2020 the Concord Band board commissioned The Diamond Baton from noted composer Roger Cichy.

More information about Dan’s life is in his obituary, and remember Dan's contributions to the Concord Band as you listen to the Band’s recording of The Diamond Baton premiere performance on YouTube.

Articles written by or about Dan Diamond

During his years as editor of our newsletter, Notes from the Concord Band, he authored a trove of articles. We present here a list of articles of general interest.

  • Roger Cichy Composes The Diamond Baton
  • Live Premiere of The Diamond Baton
  • Video Featurette: The Diamond Baton
  • Musical Inventions Necessitated by Being a Percussionist
  • Lifetime Service Award Given to Percussionist Daniel S. Diamond
  • Dan Diamond, percussion soloist
  • The Making of the Concord Band Concert Archive
  • Memoir: My Triumphant Two-Concert Tenure with the Boston Symphony Orchestra
  • Meet the Concord Band Percussion Section
  • The Community Band Spectrum
  • Integrating Technologies to Magnify the Support of Our Mission
  • The Community Band with a Professional Attitude
  • Building the Concert Band Audience
  • Some of the Percussionists’ Less-Often-Called-For Instruments
  • Memoir: Senior Member Recalls a Lifetime of Service
  • Saturday, April 1, 2023

    Amanda Carr Returns to Spring Pops!

    Amanda Carr
    jazz vocalist

    Audience favorite jazz vocalist Amanda Carr returns as special guest artist to perform with the Concord Band for two special nights. The theme for the Pops concerts is "Moon and Stars."

    Reserved seating at cafe tables with 4 or 6 seats:

    • $30 per person for 1-3 tickets
    • $25 per person for 4 or more tickets

    Save your seats now!

    Buy Tickets
    Friday April 14 @ 8pm
    Sponsored by 51 Walden‌
    Buy Tickets
    Saturday April 15 @ 8pm
    Sponsored by the Concord Band