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HAMMOND – The Southeastern Louisiana University Wind Symphony will present a concert focusing on music surrounding the presidency on Thursday, Oct. 24, in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
Former Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco will serve as master of ceremonies for the performance.
Entitled "POTUS: Music of the Presidency," the 7:30 p.m. performance will be held at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts in downtown Hammond as part of the university's fall Fanfare celebration of the arts, humanities and social sciences.
General admission tickets are $10; Southeastern students are admitted free with their student ID card. Tickets are available at the Columbia Theatre box office at 220 East Thomas St., through the Internet at columbiatheatre.org, or at the door on the night of the concert. Call 985-543-4371 for ticket information.
Symphony conductor Glen Hemberger said the performance will be highlighted with narrations by WWL radio personality John "Spud" McConnell based on the speeches and writings of Ronald Reagan and State Sen. Jack Donahue based on speeches of Abraham Lincoln. They will meet audience members in the Columbia lobby following the performance.
"The program will include several pieces most people are familiar with, including 'Fanfare and Flourishes,' 'Hail to the Chief,' and John Philip Sousa's 'Stars and Stripes Forever' and 'Presidential Polonaise,'" Hemberger said.
Also on the program are "The Dream of Abraham" by Daniel Bukvich, which is based on a vision by Abraham Zapruder, whose 8mm film captured the actual assassination; "The Shining City" by Mark Camphouse with narration by McConnell; "Lincoln Portrait" by Aaron Copland with narration by Sen. Donahue; "Easter Monday on the White House Lawn," and President Garfield's "Inaugural March" by John Philip Sousa.
Other pieces to be performed include "Elegy for a Young American," by Ronald Lo Presti and dedicated to President Kennedy; and "Air and Simple Dances" by John Williams, a work for quartet performed at the inauguration of President Barack Obama. The piece will feature cellist Dragos Filip, violinist Oleksiy Hamov, faculty member and clarinetist Victor Drescher, and pianist Kenneth Boulton, interim head of the Department of Fine and Performing Arts.
For more information, contact the Department of Fine and Performing Arts at 985-549-2184.