It’s true what they say, you can’t beat the classics, and the roaring 20s are as classic as it gets. From the rise of Hollywood and sound film to the jazz music that had flappers dancing in every bar across the country, the 1920s remains one of the most iconic periods of American history.
Now, A hundred years later, the Palomar Concert band is hoping to recapture a bit of that magic in a performance that’ll leave you dreaming of the past.
The latest production from the Comet Concert Band, “Roaring 20s: Twenty-First Century Style,” will be performed on March 25th in the Howard Brubeck Theatre. It will be in collaboration with the Palomar Tap and Jazz Dance troupe who will be accompanying the band for the first half of the performance.
The 1920s or “Roaring 20’s” was a decade of economic prosperity following the great depression and World War l. The period brought with it massive cultural shifts, such as the wide-scale adoption of cars and telephones.
However, one of the most important things to happen was the passing of the 19th amendment giving women the right to vote. The massive leap for the feminist movement gave rise to an undisputed icon of the roaring 20s, the Flapper, and along with them came the rise of their music of choice, jazz.
When most people think of jazz they think of the boring background noise that is elevator music, also known as “Muzak.” But as most musicians will tell you, real jazz is a thrilling experience. Jazz has a rich cultural and historical background and is one of the most vibrant and dynamic genres of music.
Unfortunately, the days of packed jazz bars are long behind us, but the music continues to thrive, through performances like the one Palomar is putting on. Music professor Heather Barclay hopes to show the local community and student body the excitement and joy of jazz.
In regards to the song selection, audiences can expect a lively assortment of jazz tunes. “The whole first half of the concert is revolving around different types of dances, while in the second half, we focus on some more prominent composers from that time frame,” said Barclay.
Some of the pieces include 20s hits like “The Charleston” and “The Peanut Vendor.” Along with pieces like “The Symphonic Gershwin,” an arrangement that combines the most memorable themes written by composer George Gershwin.
For those unacquainted or unfamiliar with jazz, expect a very lively and exciting set. These song selections are far from being background noise.
“This Band likes to play hard music. They do not want to play easy music…They like to be challenged and they love to play.” added Barclay, assuring that the song selection is exciting not just for the audience but for the musicians involved.
Palomar student Raymond Minjares, who will be performing the iconic clarinet solo to “Rhapsody in Blue,” expressed a great deal of optimism for the one-night performance. “It’s a little nerve-wracking because I only get one shot, but it’s pretty exciting too. I’ve been practicing and playing that solo for a long time since before this show even came to be so I’m really happy to be performing it in front of an audience, and I think it’ll turn out great.”
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