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The Sidney Concert Band is a 40-member community concert band where musicians of all ages gather to enjoy playing music while endeavouring to better the musical capabilities of the members.
Families who play together, stay together…
Two BC community bands come together to strengthen their musical and family ties.
Bob and Therese Eley
A steadfast member of the Kamloops Community Band for nearly a decade, Bob Eley is also considered an honorary member of the Sidney Concert Band. “I’ve made many friends in the SCB and I’m proud to be able to play with them on occasion, alongside my daughter Therese. I’m also looking forward to introducing them to my friends in the Kamloops Community Band where I’ve played since moving there in 2009.” The two bands will perform at the Beacon Bandshell starting at 1pm Sunday, June 24.
Therese Eley has fond memories of her father Bob playing with community bands over the years. “As a little girl, I remember dad going off to play in the Revelstoke Community Band every Wednesday night. I was excited when I was finally old enough to pick an instrument to play in our elementary school band so I could go with him. I remember how appalled he was when (of all instruments!) I chose the oboe over a brass instrument, but he still supported me.” They eventually did play together in the Revelstoke Band.
Now a resident of Brentwood Bay, Therese recently joined the Sidney Concert Band, once again because of her dad. As Bob recalls, “I just started bringing my tuba to SCB rehearsals whenever we came to visit Therese. Therese was at my first performance with the band in 2016 and afterwards, she remarked that she was thinking of picking up her oboe again. On her next birthday, her partner Chris got her instrument out of storage and between the two of us, we had her oboe refurbished and surprised her with it as a gift. That’s when she started coming out to the SCB.”
Therese remembers the moment well. “It was very nostalgic for me to walk into my first Sidney Concert Band rehearsal with my dad, 20+ years after playing together in the Revelstoke Band. I get such a warm feeling turning back to see him behind me. Our instruments of choice could not be more different (he plays the tuba) but music has always brought us together. Now I sometimes bring my own kids to our rehearsals and concerts. I hope that music will be a family legacy I can pass along. I look forward to the day we can all play together.”
David Rogers and his nephews Michael and Andrew Rogers
David Rogers and his nephews Michael and Andrew Rogers, are also fairly new to the Sidney Concert Band, but music has always been a staple in their family. “The Rogers musical dynasty began in the minds of my parents - Michael and Andrew’s grandparents,” David explains. “In particular, my mother Ruth made sure that her two small boys kept up their piano practicing. Later, we were encouraged to try the school band. We warmed to it quickly, playing in both the school band and the Trail Maple Leaf Band throughout high school.”
In the intervening years, David had to put his clarinet aside, but in 2017 the call went out: all former members of the Maple Leaf Band were summoned back to Trail, to put on a gala 100th anniversary concert. As David recalls “by then I was retired and had the time to practice, so out came the old clarinet. That concert contained five Rogers, the largest musical dynasty present. Upon returning to Victoria I joined the Sidney Concert Band.”
Michael Rogers discovered the mellow tones of the euphonium after high school while playing with the Trail Maple Leaf Band and was encouraged to pick up his horn again in July 2017 for the band’s centenary concert. There he says he met a wise-cracking trombonist named Bruce Ham, who was also a conductor in Sidney. “I liked the cut of his jib, and not wanting to put the euphonium down again, I joined the Sidney Concert Band a month later.”
As a youngster, Michael’s brother Andrew was more drawn to the saxophone. “Like every child of the ‘90s, I was inspired to play the saxophone from The Simpsons TV show.” It was the reunion of the Maple Leaf Band that rekindled his affection for the instrument. “Out came the alto, which was given an overhaul. It was like a love reunited.” Still, if it wasn’t for the insistence of SCB conductor Bruce Ham “and some family peer pressure,” Andrew may never have joined the Sidney Concert Band and his sax could have ended up “back in storage."
Cliff Noakes and Ryan Noakes
Cliff Noakes, Kamloops Community Band conductor and his nephew Ryan Noakes, a trumpet player in the band.
Trumpeter Ryan Noakes plays with the Kamloops Community Band, which, as it turns out, is conducted by his uncle, Cliff Noakes. Musical ties also run deep in the Noakes clan. “Ryan and I have quite a family history as far as music goes,” says Cliff. “Grandfather Noakes was a well-known musician in the Kamloops area, along with his parents and brother - Ryan’s great-uncle. The Noakes Family Orchestra played many a country dance in the Kamloops-Shuswap area in the 1920s. At one time, my grandfather also organized a drum-and-fife band in Kamloops. Ryan's parents and his sister as well as my two kids were all high school band students and singers.”
Ryan’s musical memories are rooted in the family. “I grew up thinking life was a musical, with my parents constantly playing records or the radio and singing along, or my father playing his clarinet and my mother her guitar. I took up the trumpet at age 11 in the elementary school band - started by my father incidentally. Being in the same band as my uncle Cliff just seems completely normal. The Noakes family used to gather at Cliff's house on Christmas Eve for a Christmas carol jam session. We’d group around the piano and sing, or play our instruments. It's always nice to be with family members, especially with a mutual interest in music tying us together.”
Concert: Sunday, June 24 at 1pm.
Sidney Concert Band hosts special guests the Kamloops Community Band for an outdoor concert at the Sidney Bandshell on Sunday, June 24 at 1 pm.
See Events Calendar
- Monday nights.
- Set up at 6:30pm
- Downbeat at 7pm
- Peace Lutheran Church
- 2295 Weiler Ave, Sidney
Want to Join?
Please contact Bruce Ham for more information.
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