USA East Music BULLETIN - WINTER 2018/19 - ISSUE 1 | Page 2

ROSE BOWL PARADE STAR LAKE BAND TAKES PART IN 100TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION By Daniel Wajda, Schenectady Citadel, NY From December 27th-January 4th the Star Lake Band of 2018 was fortunate to travel to California as the representatives from the USA Eastern Territory and participate in the Tournament of Rose Parade festivities. The Salvation Army has participated in this event for many years; in fact, this was the 100th consecutive year that a band from the Army has marched in the parade. To commemorate this special occasion, a full music camp was held in addition to the Parade events, and youth bands from all over the world were invited to convene and share their musical gifts together. This was a once-in-a-lifetime event and we all felt very fortunate and blessed to take part in it. What follows is a brief overview of the week the Star Lake Band had in California and some of the highlights we were fortunate to experience. Day 1 saw all the bands from all over the world arrive. Once registration was completed and room assignments were handed out, we gathered in the dining hall for a much-needed meal after the long flight. All participants gathered in the chapel for a massed band rehearsal. The band was privileged to be conducted by none other than Canadian Staff Bandmaster John Lam, who assumed massed band duties throughout the week. The band rehearsed 4 pieces that would be played at Bandfest in only a few days – “Dies Irae” (arr. Gordon), “Fanfare: St. Francis” (Himes), “Auld Lang Syne” (arr. Robinson), and “Amazing Grace” (arr. Phillips). It was a special sight to see over 300 of the Army’s finest young musicians fill up the chapel in such a magnificent way and the sound certainly resonated in every corner of the room. The next day again started with a short massed band practice and then the camp left for a Bandfest field practice at Pasadena City College. Bandfest is a very special opportunity that The Salvation Army has each year during its Rose Bowl festivities and it gives the Army a chance to minister to over 10,000 spectators who gather to hear the bands that day. It was lovely to rehearse the pieces out on the field and it was clear that real progress had been made in only one day. Following this, the camp returned to Mt. Crags and split into our territorial bands to rehearse for the upcoming Sunday church services. The day was not yet over, as later that evening everyone gathered in the dining hall to see which band he or she had been placed. There were eight bands to choose from and the members from the USA East were divided evenly between these bands. Following this announcement the individual 2 • USA EAST MUSIC BULLETIN | W I N T E R 2019 bands gathered in their locations for the last rehearsal of the day. On Day 3 the entire camp donned their uniforms and red tunics and headed out to the Rose Bowl where the official Bandfest photograph was taken. This is a photo you may have already seen make the rounds on social media and it was a truly special moment to witness and be a part of! Over 300 young Salvationists from all over the world, brought together in a way that had never been done before… it was a historic moment and one that shall be cherished forever. Following the official photograph, the camp returned to Pasadena City College for the Bandfest performance. The band played marvelously and conductor John Lam was joined by assistant conductors Harold Burgmayer and Derek Lance. It was certainly a different experience for the audience (accustomed to watching marching bands that spent months preparing for this moment) to suddenly witness a Salvation Army brass band playing traditional Army repertoire that had gathered for the first time only a few days before. Nevertheless, the band was in fine form and on our way out of the stadium treated the crowd to “This is Our Story”, one of two Kevin Larsson pieces written specifically for the Rose Parade band. W W W. M U S I C . S A CO N N E C T S . O R G