AUBURN — In recognition of its 30th anniversary, the twin city’s local community band is updating its name to the Auburn Community Concert Band. The 45-member performing group will soon begin its third decade of free weekly summer concerts in downtown Auburn. The upcoming 11-week series will take place at Auburn’s Festival Plaza on Wednesday evenings starting at 7 p.m. from June through August. The first performance is slated for June 15. In case of inclement weather, concerts will be held inside the ballroom of the Hilton Garden Inn Auburn Riverwatch.
Founded as the Auburn Community Band in 1981, founder and director Milt Simon believes adding “concert” to the group’s name better identifies the fundamental objective of the band. “With some community bands, the group exists as a social gathering for musicians, with performances intended as one of many activities for the members’ enjoyment,” said Simon. “The goal of this organization is to offer high-caliber concerts which bring enjoyment to everyone who lives in or visits our community.” Simon added that performing in front of large audiences is the selling point he uses to recruit new musicians for the group. “Our band typically attracts audiences of 300 to 400 people to the Plaza every week throughout each summer.”
Simon pointed out that the community concert band experience is a civic-oriented event that has been shared by hundreds of thousands of musicians across the United States throughout the nation’s history. “It is our intention that the Auburn Community Concert Band helps preserve this American musical tradition for many more years to come, offering former high school and college musicians the incentive to continue playing their instruments while making a notable contribution to the community” he stated.
The ACCB is a nonprofit organization affiliated with the City of Auburn’s Parks and Recreation Department. Current musicians range in age from 16 to 85, and reside in 14 different central, southern and western Maine communities. Members include teachers, business and healthcare professionals, technical specialists, students, and retirees.
The group’s repertoire features popular music from the past 7 decades, including big band medleys, Broadway show tunes, patriotic songs, and top-forty hits. The 30th anniversary season adds new tunes by Phil Collins, Stevie Wonder, the Blues Brothers, Journey, and Queen. “Our hope is for everyone in the audience, young and old, to identify with at least one song at every concert,” said Simon.
The Auburn Community Concert Band’s new logo is the result of collaboration with Rinck Advertising of Auburn. The design represents the music that will be flowing from beneath the towering canopies at Auburn’s Festival Plaza, the home of the ACCB, according to Simon. The design concept will be used on all of the band’s posters and promotional materials.
For a concert schedule and more information about the ACCB, visit www.auburncommunityband.com or call the Auburn Recreation Department at (207) 333-6601 ext. 2108.