Concert Band performs with The Newlanders

During the first half of the concert, the UW-Whitewater Concert Band will perform under the direction of John Tuinstra, and special guest conductor Dr. Robert Grechesky.

The Concert Band will perform works from the Renaissance through Twentieth Century and a setting of the beautiful song by Richard Strauss titled “Zueignung,” under the direction Grechesky  who is from Butler University. The ensemble’s program will conclude with a suite of Renaissance dances set for band by composer Ron Nelson.

The second half of the show will be special guests, The Newlanders. The Pennsylvania band has created a contemporary folk sound to go with songs that originated during the rise of the steel industry, coal industry and labor unions.

In fact, their music relates very well to the issues going on in Madison today. Paula Purnell (vocal, guitar, bones and Appalachian dulcimer) said the current political climate is one reason she is looking forward to performing in Wisconsin.

“It’s really funny because we thought coming to Wisconsin that football was going to be the big topic,” Purnell said. “But yea, it turns out that, yea, we’re going to be singing a lot of songs that came out of the original fight for workers right and unionization.”

Purnell said the many of their songs deal with the original struggle for worker’s rights.

“It’s really interesting how it’s connecting you know. And we’re really just going to provide the prehistorical context you know,” Purnell said. “Because it’s not like what’s happening in Wisconsin is just happening now. It’s part of a long, long story and this is just the most recent interpretation of it.”