John Maguda, Music Director
Originally founded in 1983 as “The Erie County Music Educators’ Wind
Ensemble” under the direction of Donald Schleicher, (University of Illinois), the
Erie County Wind Ensemble is now directed by John Maguda (SUNY Fredonia).
Past Music Directors and guest conductors included Mallory Thompson
(Northwestern University), Charles Peltz (New England Conservatory), Sarah
McKoin (Texas Tech University) and Donald Hunsberger (emeritus, Eastman
School of Music).
The ECWE has been invited to play at a variety of conferences and venues,
including the NY State School Music Association, the NY State Band Directors’
Association, the Tralfamadore Café, the annual July 4 th concert in the Town of
Amherst and at numerous high schools and colleges. The ensemble has evolved
from a music teachers’ ensemble to a group of the finest wind and percussion
players of various occupational backgrounds from throughout the Western New
York area. Described by the Buffalo News as “a virtuosic and resilient group”,
the Erie County Wind Ensemble’s objective is to perform the best of the wind
literature at an exemplary level to a wide range of listening audiences, including a
special outreach to school musicians.
Bill Cocca, Director
With a history stretching back one hundred years, the Buffalo Silver Band is a unique
presence in the Buffalo-Niagara music scene. As the only British style brass band in
Upstate New York, the Buffalo Silver Band continues the band performance tradition
that was established before the U.S. Civil War and rose to prominence at the end of
the 19th Century.
In recent years, the Buffalo Silver Band (BSB) has played to standing ovations from
audiences all over Western New York and Southern Ontario, including the
Chautauqua Institution, the Buffalo Philharmonic Community Showcase, the
Albright-Knox Art Gallery First Friday series, the New York State School Music
Association (NYSSMA) Winter Conference, and numerous outdoor parks and
churches. In April 2014, the Buffalo Silver Band was awarded the coveted Hannaford
Cup at the Festival of Brass in Toronto. The Buffalo Silver Band was awarded a 2017
Give for Greatness grant by the Arts Services Initiative of Western New York.
With the help of a 2015 Community Arts Grant, the BSB celebrated its centennial
season. The BSB commissioned an original work for brass band by celebrated band
composer Stephen Bulla. Mr. Bulla guest conducted the new work, Beecher
Variations, at a gala concert at the University at Buffalo’s Lippes Concert Hall in Slee
Hall. In keeping with its mission to promote brass band music, the BSB included two
high schools, Kenmore East and Hutch Tech, in the concert and in workshops run by
Mr. Bulla. The BSB has run clinics and participated in joint concerts with other
Western New York high schools as well. In 2018, the Buffalo Silver Band will offer a
music scholarship award for a talented young brass musician.
2017-2018 will mark the first subscription series for the Buffalo Silver Band with
three concerts at the University at Buffalo’s Slee Hall. The series will be previewed in
June 2017 by a special benefit for area veterans through a Slee Hall concert marking
the 100 th anniversary of the entry of the United States into World War I.
By fulfilling both its educational and performance mission, the Buffalo Silver
Band will be providing authentic British band music to new generations of music-
lovers, just as it has done for the past one hundred years.
Michael Shaw, Director
The American Legion “Band of the Tonawandas” is an award-winning concert band based in Tonawanda, NY. Formed in 1929 by World War I veterans and American Legion members, the band is comprised of Western NYers with diverse occupations and backgrounds, including management, engineering, medicine, government, sales, and education. A large number of members are instrumental music educators, graduates, or students of university music programs. All of the musicians are volunteers, and membership is open to any musician based upon evaluation and section vacancies.
The band, with 90 members at full strength, rehearses year-round and performs up to 30 concerts and parades annually. For the trained wind, brass, or percussion instrumentalist, the band provides an excellent opportunity to utilize their musical training while contributing to the cultural life of the community. The band stands ready to aid in worthwhile community functions and uphold the great tradition of the American Legion.
Charles Van Buren, Director
Founded in 1977, the Perinton Concert Band provides high quality concert band music to audiences in the Rochester, New York area. From its modest beginning the group has grown into an accomplished ensemble that has performed, by invitation, at the National Association for Music Education All-Eastern Division Conference, the New York State School Music Association Winter Conference and the Boston Festival of Bands. The band has also made three appearances at the New York State Band Directors Association Symposium and two appearances at the Association of Concert Bands National Conference.
The Perinton Concert Band has featured guest conductors such as Donald Hunsberger, Loras Schissel, Christoper Seaman and Jeff Tyzik as well as many guest artists including members of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and the Eastman School of Music faculty. The band has recorded three CD’s, The Pride of Perinton, Great Music from Great Movies and a CD of holiday music entitled A Gift of Music. Several pieces have been commissioned from composers Roger Cichy, Jeff Tyzik, Al “Corky” Fabrizio and Howard Rowe.
The band has weekly two-hour rehearsals and gives an average of six performances during their season, which runs from September to June. The repertoire of the Perinton Concert Band includes traditional wind band literature, transcriptions and marches as well as music from the jazz, pop, and Broadway genres. Its fifty-two members reflect a cross-section of ages, occupations and backgrounds united by the love of music and the enjoyment of performing good concert band music.
Brian Worsdale, Director
The Grand Street Community Band is an all-volunteer symphonic wind ensemble that
rehearses and performs esteemed repertoire in a friendly setting. We help adult
musicians improve their command of brass, woodwind, and percussion instruments
while striving for a high level of craft and visibility. We support projects that encourage
lifelong music-making through participation in symphonic wind ensembles. We strive to
give every instrumental musician a place to play, regardless of ability level.
Our members come from all professions and walks of life; some of our seats are filled
by alumni of the Grand Street Campus High Schools, from which the band takes its
name. GSCB fills a huge void for symphonic wind ensembles in the New York City area.
Along with our emphasis on musicianship, we take pride in being a social, friendly group
that encourages community values and gives our participants the opportunity to play
together. GSCB’s efforts continue to surprise and delight both musicians and
audiences, while keeping classical music alive and well within the Brooklyn community
In addition to presenting our regular series at Grand Street High School, we have
participated in Columbia University’s Festival of Winds, Make Music New York,
McCarren Park Pumpkin Day, and Summer Starz at the East River State Park in our
home neighborhood of Williamsburg. GSCB has also had the honor of performing at
both Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall.
Over the many seasons GSCB has existed we have had the pleasure to host amazing
guest conductors, composers and performing artists. Most recently conductor/composer
Johan De Meji lead GSCB in a performance of his infamous Lord of the Rings
Symphony. Along with this, trombone soloist Jon Whitaker and Composer Anthony
Barfield joined the GSCB in a performance of Red Sky. Throughout the ensembles
history we have had the pleasure of working with other composer such as Michael
Markowski and David Maslanka.
Kenneth Bagley, Director
Larry Klabunde, Director