Two big ensembles delight, in afternoon concert at David Douglas

Take a look and see which two really big music groups came together to provide an epic concert, playing music spanning 400 years …

Members of the East County Community Orchestra and the Portland Metro Concert Band get out their instruments and prepare to play a joint concert.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

An afternoon of delightful music was jointly presented by the East County Community Orchestra and the Portland Metro Concert Band on April 12, at the Horner Performing Arts Center at David Douglas High School.

Playing to an almost-full house, Community Orchestra Conductor Dr. Roger Nickerson gave the first downbeat just after 3:00 p.m.

Orchestra Conductor Dr. Roger Nickerson leads the group through BRANDENBURG CONCERTO No. 3.

The East County Community Orchestra performs in a special April concert held in the Hazelwood neighborhood of outer East Portland.

The selections for this all-volunteer orchestra started off with Frederick Loewe’s MY FAIR LADY. The audience was also treated to BACCHANALE, from Samson and Deliah, by C. Saint-Saens, the BRANDENBURG CONCERTO No. 3 by J.S. Bach, followed by PRELUDE AND FUGUE in Bb. A real crowd-pleaser was Leroy Anderson favorite, BLUE TANGO.

Community Orchestra Conductor Dr. Roger Nickerson greets Metro Band Conductor Jay Burchak as intermission begins.

During intermission, Dr. Nickerson, relatively new to the organization told East Portland News, “We select music that is challenging for our musicians, and that is also enjoyable for our audience. In this concert, we’re covering 400 years of music history!”

The Cellamigos provide a cultured soundtrack during the concert’s intermission.

Concert-goers look forward to the treats provided during intermission.

While most attend for the music, some seemed particularly enthusiastic about the cookies and coffee set out by the families of the participating musicians. And, a new feature of these free concerts was music in the lobby during intermission is provided by the Cellamigos.

The Portland Metro Concert Band begins their segment of the concert.

Conductor Nickerson again took the podium to start off the second half of the concert, performed by the Metro Band, performing THE SOUND OF MUSIC, commemorating it the musical’s 50th anniversary.

Metro Band Conductor Jay Burchak leads this “really big band” through classical and popular tunes.

Then, Conductor Jay Burchak led the Metro Band in STRIKE UP THE BAND by George Gershwin, OVERTURE in Bb, KENTUCKY SUNRISE, THREE AYRES from GLOUCHESTER, before finishing up with a medley of Broadway hits from the early 20th century, SALUTE TO BROADWAY.

Both musical organizations are supported by donations; this concert was underwritten by a grant from the Multnomah County Cultural Trust and the Oregon County Cultural Trust.

You’ll be applauding, as these folks are, when you attend the next concerts of these fine musical organizations.

East County Community Orchestra’s next concert at this venue is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on May 29. For more information, CLICK HERE.

Portland Metro Concert Band next concert at this venue will be at 7:30 p.m. on June 12. For more information, CLICK HERE.

© 2015 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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