City Band Highlights Heroes and Villains at Park Performance
TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KLIX) – As the rays of a setting sun glistened through the park's tree branches, people rose from their seats, looked to the flag that stood upon the stage, and sang about “beautiful” and “spacious skies” – a song that also honors heroes “Who more than self their country loved, And Mercy more than life.”
It was a fitting end to the evening’s event: the 111th Twin Falls Municipal Band Concert, whose theme was “Heroes and Villains.” Performances included music from movies based on DC Comics and Marvel superhero movies and, among others, Indian Jones, Rocky and Star Wars.
“We had a pretty darn good crowd last night,” concert host Lori Henson said, noting that there were many heroes in the audience, including members of the Dilettantes Group of Magic Valley.
For 10 weeks beginning the first Thursday in June, the band performs at Twin Falls City Park. If you missed Thursday’s concert, you have only a few more opportunities to see it this year. The last concert at the park this season is scheduled for Aug. 4 – “but we’ll sneak another one in out there overlooking the canyon,” Henson said.
The canyon rim concert held near Elevation 486 will be held Aug. 2 in conjunction with the Magic Valley Arts Council – an event that is great PR for the band, she said. Concerts along the canyon rim give tourists and Magic Valley residents who never heard the band a taste of what goes on at the City Park for 10 weeks every summer.
Henson said the Municipal Band, which started in 1905, is a gem of the city.
“This community is pretty lucky to have such a continuous program,” she said.
Henson, who’s been serving as concert host for about 16 years, said she started attending the concerts when she first moved to the area more than 28 years ago.
“Someone back then told me, ‘If you don’t have anything else to do some evening you should check out the band in the park.’ And I thought, ‘Well, that sounds very Americana.’”
She started attending and she was hooked. Years later, at a time when the band had rotating MCs, she volunteered to host on occasion. She eventually was asked to be the permanent host.
Other residents seemed to also have gotten hooked on the band performances – Henson notices a lot of returning faces every year.
“There are so many regulars,” she said. “They know me because I’m the host, but I wish I knew all of their names. Throughout the year I run into these people, and they are so friendly and appreciative for the band.”
They, by their support, are some of her heroes. So is Ted Hadley, the conductor, and members of the band – some who've been performing for more than 60 years.
Members of the band are like family. The older members welcome new members, she said, and sometimes former members, such as those who may have moved away but stop in town to visit, will join in a performance.
Hadley – who wore Superman socks complete with red capes and a Star Wars t-shirt to complement the theme on Thursday – said this is his 39th year.
Henson’s favorite piece from Thursday’s concert: music from Jekyll and Hyde, a figure who embodies both hero and villain.
“I was all about that last night,” she said, noting that she also always enjoys the patriotic pieces that audience members participate in singing at the end of each concert. “It was a beautiful night."
Want to see these local heroes, including Henson who Hadley acknowledged for being a great host? The next concert starts at 8 p.m. July 28.