seal  Purdue News

July 15, 2003

Broadway, ragtime and marches at Purdue Summer Band Concert

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – With construction near Slayter Center completed, the Purdue Summer Band will celebrate with a free Slayter concert at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 22, that is filled with Sousa marches, opera, Broadway tunes and a touch of ragtime.

Each summer, Purdue University Bands pulls together college students, Purdue faculty and staff members, high school students and community musicians for an intensive band experience. The musicians rehearse for a month with Jay Gephart, director of the Purdue's Symphonic Band and Orchestra, to present an outdoor concert. This year's band features 60 members ranging from teenagers to octogenarians.

Matching the diversity in ages, Gephart plans a diverse musical feast.

Gephart says "Freckles Rag," which showcases the band's mallet percussionists, "is straight-ahead ragtime with elements of contemporary jazz."

The piece comes to Purdue from Bishop Ireton, a private high school in Alexandria, Va., that has established a reputation for commissioning new works of music.

Also featured in the concert are tidbits from John Philip Sousa's most famous marches that have been woven together by Warren Barker in "Sousa." The concert program also lists "Strike Up the Band," "Carmen Suite" and selections from "The Phantom of the Opera."

Gephart describes another piece, Von Suppe's "Overture to Poet and Peasant," as an "old warhorse," but one people will easily recognize "because the melodies are used in cartoons, mostly Bugs Bunny cartoons."

Concertgoers are encouraged to bring picnics as well as blankets and/or lawn chairs for lawn seating. While work at Slayter is finished, other projects continue to block roads on campus. The easiest way to reach Slayter is via State Street and Intramural Drive.

For more concert information or to be put on a mailing list for the 2003-04 season brochure, call (765) 496-6785 or e-mail Kathy Matter, Purdue Bands public relations director, at

CONTACT: Matter, (765) 496-6785;

NOTE TO JOURNALISTS: Media interested in interviews should contact Kathy Matter, Purdue Bands public relations director, at (765) 496-6785.

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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