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posted: 5/14/2014 4:00 PM

Des Plaines band holds first concert with new conductor

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  • Des Plaines Park District Community Concert Band Conductor William Gilmer

    Des Plaines Park District Community Concert Band Conductor William Gilmer
    Courtesy of Lisa Haring/Des Plaines Park District

Submitted by Des Plaines Park District

The Des Plaines Park District Community Concert Band, under the direction of new conductor William Gilmer, will present "American Riversongs" 7 p.m. Friday, May 16, at the Prairie Lakes Theater. The program features music that explores the impact that rivers have on society.

"Countless artists, composers, and writers have pondered the significance of these wondrous bodies of water and their effect on culture, society, and the very future of our planet," said Gilmer. Musicians use rivers as metaphors to describe love, spirituality, and the temporary nature of life."

Included in the program are, among others, "American Riversongs" by Pierre La Plante; "Deep River," a spiritual set by James Swearingen; "Shenandoah," one of America's most recognizable folk tunes; highlights from Jerome Kern's 1927 musical "Show Boat;" and John Fogerty's rock anthem, "Proud Mary."

"The band is very excited to perform their first concert under their new conductor," said Shelli Sarg, facilities manager. "The performance will last about 1½ hours and features both returning band members and many new musicians."

Tickets are $5 at the door; seniors and students $3; family of four $12; under age 6 free. Musicians interested in joining the band should contact Sarg at (847) 391-5711 or visit