TubaChristmas To Bring Low Brass Carols To Lewisburg

Tuba and low brass players are needed for Greenbrier County’s first TubaChristmas event!

Each year throughout the country, TubaChristmas concerts are held, the lower-register, brass tones singing a variety of Christmas carols and staple holiday songs. Local musicians Jim and Cedric Allder have begun planning for the event.

“If you haven’t heard, Cedric [Allder] and I are organizing a Lewisburg TubaChristmas this year on December 11!” said Allder. “We are super excited about this event, and it is sure to be a great experience for participating performers and audience members alike.”

Those looking to see the band play should come to downtown Lewisburg’s Greenspace.

“We will plan for a 45 minute concert, including playing each carol twice through, along with some special comments and recognitions. The concert will run from 3 p.m. until just before 4 p.m. There may be a few surprises (planned in some cases) along the way! This is sure to be a memorable performance that will warm the hearts of young and old alike as we celebrate the holiday season!”

Although he directs the Greenbrier East band program, Allder will not be in the conductor’s position for the concert.

“We are excited to announce that we will be joined by guest conductor Brianna Williams!” Allder wrote. “Brianna is a native of Mercer County and is currently Euphonium Instructor for the U.S. Army School of Music. She is looking forward to conducting and playing for our inaugural concert.”

In a flier looking to recruit more musicians, Allder explained “my son Cedric and I have been attending TubaChristmas events since 2016 in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia and Alexandria, Virginia. We have truly enjoyed the opportunity to make wonderful music with tuba and euphonium players from all over, and we decided that we wanted to bring this experience to southern West Virginia. And what better place to host a TubaChristmas event than beautiful, historic downtown Lewisburg! … We have built in time between the rehearsal and the concert to enjoy a nice lunch or hunt for a special gift, and we invite you to stick around for more shopping and dinner afterwards.”

Allder then explains what local musicians, those that play Tuba, Euphonium, Baritone, Sousaphone, Tenor Horn, Flugelbone, Ophicleide, or more, would need if they are interested in joining in.

“A folding music stand, festive clothing, the official TubaChristmas Songbook ‘Carols for a Merry TubaChristmas’ by Alec Wilder. Due to TubaChristmas policies, photocopies are not allowed, [and] participants must use the official books, although stand partners may share. Books will be available for purchase at our registration table.”

To participate, a registration table will be at Academy Park, the lawn of New River COmmunity and Technical College, on Church Street, from 11 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. on December 11, the day of the event. After the musician is registered, they can immediately begin tuning up for the rehearsal at 11:45 a.m.

“We suggest that you select the part you feel most comfortable playing, but those with flexibility should be prepared to change parts for balance purposes,” Allder notes. “If you have been to TubaChristmas events before, you probably know this information already. That being said, we are expecting a lot of uninitiated performers since this is the first time we have hosted an event in our area.”

Although this would be Greenbrier County’s first TubaChristmas, it would not be the first in the country.

“TubaChristmas was conceived in 1974 by Harvey Phillips as a tribute to his teacher and mentor, William J. Bell, born on Christmas Day, 1902,” Allder explained. “Through the legendary William J. Bell, we reflect on our heritage and honor all great artists and teachers whose legacy has given us high performance standards, well structured pedagogy, professional integrity, personal values and a camaraderie envied by all other instrumentalists. The first TubaChristmas was conducted by Paul Lavalle in New York City’s Rockefeller Plaza Ice Rink on Sunday, December 22, 1974.”

Allder also asked those interested in participating to fill out a survey before the event at https://forms.gle/17g4F9rF27bw79638.

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