26 May 2023

Bands to come together for Junee June Jam

| Shri Gayathirie Rajen
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The 2022 Junee Jam

The 2022 Junee Jam. Photo: Riverina Conservatorium of Music.

The Riverina Conservatorium of Music (RCM) is inviting the community to an afternoon of live music that will take place at the Athenium Theatre in June.

Junee June Jam will feature the Riverina Concert Band, RCM Student Concert Band, Junee Town Band and Junee Community Choir on Sunday 4 June at 2 pm.

RCM head of brass, woodwind and percussion, and RCM Student Concert Band and Riverina Concert Band conductor Tamara Spencer said the upcoming Junee Jam would be the second one following the pandemic.

“We will take our two concert bands out to Junee and do a rehearsal with the Junee Town Band and Junee Community Choir,” Ms Spencer said.

“We will put on a free concert in the afternoon where we play some combined pieces and our own pieces.

“It’s a nice opportunity to take our ensembles out to an outlying community and perform for them,” she said.

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Ms Spencer said around 40 musicians were involved across the four ensembles.

“There’s a lot of crossovers … we have quite a few people who play in two or three of the different bands,” she said.

“It’s a good opportunity for everybody to play with different groups of musicians.”

Speaking to the importance of student musicians going out to perform in public places, Ms Spencer said it gave them something to work towards.

“There’s this old saying … if you have something to play for, you’ll practise for,” she said.

“Having this performance ready to go in a couple of weeks’ time gives us something to work towards and really motivates everyone to learn their parts.”

The conductor said the rehearsals for the concert were coming along really well, and the ensembles were “sounding really good”.

RCM Student Concert Band’s performance will include a suite from The New World (Dvorak’s well known New World Symphony).

Riverina Concert Band and RCM Student Concert Band are performing Ralph Hultgren’s Monaro Suite – Gateway to the Alps, High Country and Eden’s Coast and the Sea.

Riverina Concert Band will be performing Defying Gravity, Polka Party and Tijuana Brass in Concert.

Ms Spencer said that at the end of the concert, all three bands would play a combined piece called Huntsman in the Car by RCM staff member Fran Griffin who plays the flute, recorder, clarinet and bassoon and is also involved in the Junee Choir and the Junee Town Band.

The bands will also play Three Ayres from Gloucestershire and Crazy Little Thing Called Love.

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Ms Spencer said it would be a great opportunity for all the musicians to play music by a composer who will be in the room.

Ms Spencer said she was looking forward to next Sunday’s concert at the Athenium.

“The Athenium is a beautiful venue to play in, the acoustics are very resonant and it’s a nice space to perform.”

Ms Spencer said the last concert was well received by the community and it was great to perform the music in communities outside Wagga.

RCM CEO Hamish Tait said the music college had been conducting Junee Jams for nearly 10 years.

“It started off as a collaboration with a Junee town band and we found that a lot of people from Wagga travelled out to Junee to hear it (the performances),” he said.

Mr Tait said the Junee Jam started when the Athenium received funds for significant renovations and the conservatorium decided to play music at the venue.

Junee June Jam will be held at the Athenium Theatre, Junee on Sunday, 4 June, from 2 pm to 5 pm. Admission to the concert is free, however gold coin donations are appreciated.

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