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Lowell Mason Foundation to Host John Philip Sousa International Honors Band and Choir

Sousa International Honors Band and Choir Comes to Medfield for 4th of July Concert

The town of Medfield will have a 4th of July event to look forward to this year.

The John Philip Sousa International Honors Band and Choir will perform in Medfield High School's Lowell Mason Auditorium on Wednesday, July 3 at 7:30 PM. The band and choir will perform a variety of works including original works for band and choir, orchestral transcriptions, marches, popular numbers, patriotic music, European favorites, and combined vocal and instrumental pieces.

The membership of the Sousa International Honors Band and Choir is comprised of outstanding student musicians from 19 states stretching from Maine, south to North Carolina, and west to Oregon.

Under the direction of Dr. Al & Gladys Wright of West Lafayette, Indiana, the Sousa International Honors Band and Choir have performed under this name and others for over thirty years.

Mrs. Patricia LaJoye of Hastings, Michigan, will conduct the 2013 Honors Choir. 

The 2013 Honors Band will perform under a number of conductors: Mr. Randell Mealer, of Harrison, Arkansas; Ms. Kim Mathieu of Gorham, Maine; Mr. Stephen Sigmon of Hendersonville, North Carolina; and Mr. Thomas Reynolds of Templeton, Massachusetts. 

Mr. Reynolds is the Tour Director and is also a member of the Lowell Mason Foundation which is based in Medfield.

The group will have arrived in Harvard, Massachusetts, for its first rehearsal at The Bromfield School only three days before this concert. The Medfield concert will be the only formal concert that the group will present in the United States. Immediately following the Medfield concert, they will embark on a tour of Europe from July 4 to July 20 and present concerts in Belgium, Holland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy and France.

Students selected into the Sousa International Honor Band and Choir were acknowledged by Dr. Al G. Wright, Chairman of the Board, of the John Philip Sousa Foundation, in recognition of their outstanding musicianship and contributions to their local high school band and chorus programs. Students were invited to apply for membership by representatives of the Sousa Foundation located in different sections of the United States through their local band and chorus directors.

In addition to the concert performances, the students will visit the birthplaces of two famous composers - Mozart in Salzburg, Austria and Beethoven in Bonn, Germany. They will participate in a home stay in Obgrimbie, Belgium with another youth band, cruise down the famous Rhine River, ride a gondola up Europe's highest mountain peak, Mont Blanc, in the French Alps, stay near a medieval castle on the Rhine, and visit daVinci’s “The Last Supper” fresco in Milan, Italy along with many other exciting sights and experiences.

Tickets for this special concert are $12 for Adults and $10 for Seniors/Students and will benefit the restoration of the Lowell Mason House on Green Street. Tickets can be purchased online at lowellmasonhouse.org or at the door.

About the Lowell Mason Foundation (www.lowellmasonhouse.org)

Lowell Mason (1792-1872) was born in Medfield, Massachusetts, and is considered the Father of Music Education in America  He was instrumental to introducing music as part of the regular curriculum to America’s public schools as well as professionalizing the teaching of music.  The Lowell Mason Foundation was formed in 2010 by a group of concerned Medfield citizens and music educators after it was learned that Lowell Mason’s birthplace had been sold and was slated for demolition.  In one year, the group successfully moved the house to safety, which occurred on April 19, 2011.  The Foundation continues to raise funds to restore and expand Lowell Mason’s birthplace for use as a historic, cultural and educational site. 

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