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Southeast Alabama band coming to Troy

Anybody that can count to four could direct the Southeast Alabama Community Band.

“That’s how good they are,” said Dr. Johnny Long, band director. “Anybody can direct those guys.”

“Those guys” are the 55 members of the Southeast Alabama Community Band that will be in concert at 7:30 p.m. May 4 at the Claudia Crosby Theater on the campus of Troy University.

The concert is free and open to the public.

The idea of the Southeast Alabama Community Band originated with Tim and Teresa Sims 10 years ago but Long said he wasn’t sure that they could get up that many people to play.

“But I was wrong,” he said. “There was more interest in a community band than I ever thought there would be. We’ve got members from all around. We’ve got outstanding players from here like Teresa Sims, Michael O’Hara, Sam Prater, ‘Doc’ Kirby, Jake Doty, Ray Smith, James Smith, Bill Denison and Ralph Black. I just can’t name them all.

“This band has some of the best musicians anywhere and they put on quite a show. I’m just glad they let me stand up there and wave my arms.”

The concert will include Broadway tunes, show tunes, marches and some traditional music that will be familiar to everybody.

The hour-long concert will include a salute to Glenn Miller.

“We’re going to play good music and it will be a good concert and I hope people will come,” Long said.

The Southeast Alabama Community Band Concert is the last event on the Troy Arts Council’s calendar for 2009. At the concert, the TAC will present its annual music, visual art and volunteer for the arts awards.

“These awards are extreme honors for the three recipients and it’s a privilege for the Troy Arts Council to name the award winners,” said Kristy Drinkwater, TAC president.