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Solar Winds play free concert Saturday

Staff Report

The U.S. Air Force Band of the Rockies’ Solar Winds will play a free concert at 7 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 14, at Glenwood Springs High School auditorium.

The concert is sponsored by the Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association and the Glenwood Springs Post Independent.

Established in 1999, Solar Winds is a professional clarinet quartet, one of nine performing groups that make up the 75-member U. S. Air Force Band of the Rockies.

To achieve a blend of sounds and a wide range of tones, the quartet plays the full variety of clarinet instruments, including the standard B-flat clarinet, the E-flat clarinet, the basset clarinet and the bass clarinet.

“We like to do a little bit of everything. We are not a typical military quartet,” said Technical Sgt. Noelle Little, who serves as the group’s musical director.

The program will include “Bird Watching,” a bright and lively set of six short movements by Bristish composer Michael Henry, a classic swing medley, and a Mendelssohn string quartet transposed for clarinets.

“We’ll alse be playing a special tribute to 9/11, a piece we had written for that occasion,” Little said.

“We’ll be playing some fun stuff, some serious stuff, and, unfortunately, some sad stuff,” Little said.

The band performs community concerts, holds master classes for elementary through college students and performs at military functions in support of the U.S. Air Force.

The quartet is made up of a diverse group of musicians including Master Sgt. George Roach Jr., Technical Sgt. Noelle Little, Technical Sgt. Heike Gazette and Technical Sgt. Kariann Voigts.

In 1958 the Band of the Rockies, including Solar Winds, moved to the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs to support the Cadet Wing at parades, military ceremonies and athletic events. In 1993, it was reassigned to Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs.

Admission to the concert is free, however, tickets are required and are available until 5 p.m. Friday at the chamber office, 1002 Grand Ave. or at the Post Independent, 2014 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs, or by calling 945-6589.


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