Centre College campus to host annual Great American Brass Band Festival
The campus of Centre College will play host to the 23rd annual Great American Brass Band Festival (GABBF) from Thursday, June 7 through Sunday, June 10.
The theme of this year’s GABBF is “Trumpetissimo,” in honor of Vincent DiMartino, co-founder of the GABBF, who retired from his position as W. George Matton Professor of Music at Centre this year. DiMartino is one of the most renowned trumpet players in the world, and numerous other important trumpeters will perform at the GABBF this year to pay tribute to DiMartino, including Doc Severinsen. To read an article about DiMartino recently published in the Lexington Herald-Leader, click here.
Festivities begin on Thursday evening, with a Gallery Hop in downtown Danville from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Area artists will display their work in storefronts and businesses for all to enjoy.
A Brass Symposium will be held in Weisiger Theater in the Norton Center for the Arts from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Friday, June 8. Performers and musical scholars—including DiMartino—will speak on the history of the cornet and trumpet, as well as play music from every era of the trumpet’s past. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m.
Downtown Danville will host a Bayou and Brass event from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday, June 8. Main Street will be turned into Mardi Gras headquarters, with various musicians performing at Weisiger Park and local businesses setting up stands to sell New Orleans-style food.
Musicians will play a concert at historic Shaker Village at Pleasant Hill from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on Friday, June 8. Concerts will also be held at downtown Weisiger Park from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., as well as at the Beaumont Inn in Harrodsburg from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Also planned for that evening is the Great American Balloon Race, with balloons scheduled to lift off from Stuart Powell Field at 7 p.m.
The official kick-off event to the concerts on Centre’s campus begins at 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 9, with the GABBF parade down Danville’s Main Street. Concerts begin directly afterwards on the main stage, which is located in front of Centre’s Grace Doherty Library. Everyone is invited to bring blankets and lawn chairs and listen to the music until 11 p.m. Concerts will also be played throughout the day at downtown Weisiger Park.
An ecumenical church service will be offered at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, June 10 on the main stage at Centre. Churches from around the community host the service, with music played by featured bands from the GABBF. Free concerts continue throughout the day on June 10, until 5 p.m.