Concert Band, Glee Club to perform together for first time since 1920s

by Dennis Brown

The annual spring performance of the University of Notre Dame Concert Band will take place at a different time, different place and under far different circumstances than usual.p. Typically held the week after spring break on campus, this year’s concert will take place at 4 p.m. April 29 (Sunday) at the Morris Performing Arts Center in downtown South Bend.p. And, for the first time since the 1920s, the concert band and the Notre Dame Glee Club will perform together.p. “There is nothing definitive in the files,” says band director Ken Dye, “but we’ve talked to former members and no one can remember a joint performance since the days when Rockne was the football coach and Joseph Casasanta directed both groups.”p. Casasanta, conductor of the band from 1921-42 and director of the glee club from 1926-38, composed the University’s alma mater, “Notre Dame, Our Mother,” as well as “Hike, Notre Dame,” “Down the Line,” and “When Irish Backs Go Marching By.”p. For their combined spring concert, the band and glee club with perform, both separately and together, a variety of pieces, including Casasanta’s compositions and other Notre Dame favorites.p. Tickets for the concert are $5 for the general public and $2 for students and senior citizens and can be purchased at the Morris box office, the LaFortune Student Center box office or the band office. Proceeds from the concert will benefit the South Bend Community School Corporation’s summer production for the Firefly Festival.p. The Notre Dame Concert Band was founded in 1845 and is composed of 80 musicians, most of whom are not music majors at the University. It annually performs on tour throughout the United States and around the world.p. Dye is in his first year as director of bands after serving as associate director since 1998. He previously directed the bands at Rice University for 17 years and last year served as arranger and composer for the opening ceremonies of the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.p. Founded in 1915, the Notre Dame Glee Club includes some 80 members and is considered one of the finest all-male collegiate choral groups in the nation. A recent European tour took the group to Rome, Florence, Venice, Innsbruck, Munich, Prague, Paris and London, and in May the club will embark on its first tour of Asia. Daniel Stowe is in his eighth year as director.

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