The Airmen of Note, a premier jazz ensemble and one of eight performing groups of the United States Air Force Band, will perform a free concert at Binghamton University next week.
The group, which is one of today’s few touring large jazz bands, will perform Friday, Nov. 19 in the Anderson Center.
‘These military bands tour around the country. The Anderson Center has hosted several different bands over the past 12 years, from various, mostly Air Force, military bands. They go around the country and give free concerts as a public service,’ said Annette Burnett, operations director at the Anderson Center.
The musicians come from top music schools and conservatories in the country and tour for the majority of the year, according to Timothy Perry, the chair and a professor of the music department.
Perry has had the opportunity to guest conduct both Army and Air Force bands during their visits to BU.
‘It was a delight ‘ they can literally play anything,’ Perry said. ‘Many travel with an equally fantastic vocal ensemble that performs alone or with the band; they always put together an entertaining program, with a healthy dose of the patriotic, and usually present outstanding soloists.’ He said the vocal performances are ‘definitely worth hearing.’ According to Burnett, the Airmen of Note will bring one vocalist with them to the concert.
According to the United States Air Force Band’s (USAF) website, the concert is part of a 15-day fall 2010 tour through the states of Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New York and Pennsylvania. The tour aims to reach many regions of the northeast. The Airmen of Note will start their tour in Rhode Island, stopping in West Warwick and continuing to Woburn and Springfield in Massachusetts.
The majority of the tour will be spent in New York, where the band will perform in Hudson, Rome, Syracuse, Buffalo, Geneva, Ithaca and Binghamton. The tour will conclude in Harrisburg and Lancaster, Penn.
Burnett said she expects a full house, though she has estimated that at least 75 percent of the tickets are still available. The Anderson Center will continue to advertise next week while tickets are still being sold. People can also attend without tickets on the day of the show, and will be seated if empty seats remain.
According to the USAF website, the musicians aim to deliver world-class musical productions that encourage young men and women to serve in the Air Force, as well as increase public awareness of the armed forces and their mission while strengthening the reputation of the Air Force as respected professionals in charge of promoting national security.
‘Their main mission is to promote a branch of the military service and promote patriotism,’ Burnett said. ‘It’s basically a public service, while increasing awareness about what the military does.’
The website also notes that the Airmen of Note, which was established in 1950, has attracted 18 of the most talented musicians in the country. They have played a number of international performances in South America, Europe and Japan. They have also made regular appearances at jazz festivals throughout the country.
Tickets are available from noon to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at the Anderson Center Box Office. All tickets must be retrieved in person, and each individual has a limit of four tickets. The event will be sponsored by BU, Carr Printing, the Press & Sun-Bulletin and the Anderson Center itself. Doors will open at 7:30 p.m. on the day of the concert.