Sunday, June 16, 2024
June 16, 2024

Swing Shift Big Band set to thrill on April 1

In performing for the first time since 2019, Swing Shift Big Band members want to assure everyone that their April 1 show set for Fulford Hall is no joke.

From 7:30 to 10:30 p.m. the 18-piece big band will play music from the 1920s to the 2020s — from dixie, swing and crooner to funk, pop and Latin. Patrons will hear the music of Duke Ellington, Bruno Mars, Count Basie, Chicago, Beatles, Sinatra, Bublé, Stevie Wonder, Glenn Miller, Jobim, Tito Puente and more. Three vocalists, including guest vocalist Wanda Nowicki, will provide even more variety to the program.

“Swing Shift is a community band made up of people from all walks, including music teachers, amateur and professional musicians aged 16 to 85,” states the group in a press release.

Instruments include two alto saxes, three tenor saxes, baritone sax, three trumpets, four trombones, drums, percussion, bass, piano and guitar.

Derrick Milton is the current music director, and was also one of the four previous leaders, returning to the helm in 2014. His wife Wendy Milton, director of Bandemonium concert band until recently, plays lead alto.

“Many of the band’s members are well known in the local musical community and beyond,” the group says. “Brandon Bronson, the newest band teacher on Salt Spring, provides a solid percussion foundation. John Moore, on tenor sax, is known for his work with the Salt Spring Jazz and Blues Society and his lovely improvised solos. Keyboard player Grace McNab has fostered many musical talents as a music instructor at Capilano University. Trumpeter and jazz wunderkind Simon Millerd will be joining the group for this event. Trombonist and vocalist Jim Raddysh has been playing in all sorts of venues over the years and once had his own musical TV show. Grammy award-winning bassoonist Tracie Whitelaw has joined the band playing electric bass. Everyone in the band has a story to tell.”

People are welcome to dance or to just listen and eat, drink and be merry at the all-ages event.

Proceeds from the bar will go to DAISSI. Lou Ellis, famous for her food at the Shirley Delicious cafe on Vancouver Island, will once again provide snacks.

Tickets ($20 adults/$5 students) are available at Mondo and Company in Ganges.

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