Academy Winds concert at Ilfeld Tuesday evening

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Submitted to the Optic

The United States Air Force Academy Band’s Academy Winds will have a performance at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 15 at New Mexico Highlands University’s Ilfeld Auditorium. The stop is part of the groups week-long tour of New Mexico.

The tour will be to perform free public concerts, work with college and high school students, and talk about education opportunities at the Air Force Academy as well as careers in the Air Force.

The tour will feature Veterans Day performances and will include a special tribute to the Navajo Code Talkers. Academy Winds will be presenting an innovative program that spotlights the diversity and professionalism found throughout your United States Air Force.  

“We have put together a very entertaining show,” said musical director, MSgt. Sarah Balian. “There is literally something for everyone, and the show is non-stop action. There is such a variety of music in it that parallels the great diversity found throughout our Air Force and American culture. The show honors our veterans and all the men and women currently serving around the globe.”

“This tour will help us get the word out about the great educational opportunities at the Air Force Academy, and about careers for both enlisted and officers throughout the Air Force,” said T-Sgt. Julia Taylor, flutist with the group. “It also reminds people of the young men and women deployed overseas, fighting for our freedom,” added T-Sgt.  Susan Govier, clarinetist with Academy Winds.

Prior to the concert, the members of Academy Winds will present an educational performance for students. “We really enjoy this type of educational concert,” said Balian. “It affords us the opportunity to mentor young players and display the excellence that is found throughout our Air Force.”

“This type of educational outreach is always very rewarding for not only the students, but for us as well,” added T-Sgt. Julia Taylor, “It is important to not only let students know about educational possibilities at the Air Force Academy, but to remind them of our veterans and the importance of service … it is because of these selfless Americans that we are able to share our music and talents. It is an honor to deliver that message for the Air Force.” Additional Academy Winds performances during this tour will include:  

All of these concerts are free and open to the public.

The band’s program will include selections from many different musical genres and time periods. There will be works from the Renaissance Era, the 1900s, Big Band music from the ‘40s, music from the opera, favorites from America’s March King John Philip Sousa and some pop music as well. Taking great pride in presenting a cosmopolitan program, Academy Winds will also perform Irish music, Latin selections and a special tribute to Native Americans and the contributions they have made to our country’s culture and military entitled, “The Navajo Code Talkers.”

Soloists will be featured on every performance as well. The program will conclude with a tribute to veterans that will include a performance of all the Armed Service Songs.

Free tickets are available through the Las Vegas / San Miguel Chamber of Commerce.  For more ticket information, call 425-8631.