Bristol Brass and Wind Ensemble welcome spring with concert

Published on Sunday, 7 April 2019 20:50
Written by Erica Drzewiecki


BRISTOL - Spring was welcomed in on Summer Street Sunday by the sounds of the saxophone and piccolo.

The Bristol Brass & Wind Ensemble presented its Annual POPS Concert “Spring is Here” for a huge turnout of local residents. The event was held inside the Prospect United Methodist Church, the home base for the 60-member ensemble.

The show opened with “The Star Spangled Banner.” Other selections included “The Gladiator” and a polka featuring all woodwind instrumentalists.

“Most people would just call it a polka, but because we wanted to feature the entire woodwind section we’re going to call it a woodwind polka,” Announcer Greg Hahn told the audience.

People packed the church for this concert, which was free to the community. Cars lined Summer Street and filtered over into the Bristol Historical Society’s parking lot across the road.

Musical Director and Conductor Richard Theriault proudly featured guest vocalists Debra Mace, James Martin and Maria Salice. Mace is typically a trombonist in the ensemble. There was also a piano solo, ‘Warsaw Concerto’, played by Jim Santucci, another multi-talented musician.

Sunday’s marked the second event of the BBWE’s 2019 season. The ensemble performed for students at Greene-Hills Middle School in February.

“Just when you thought it was all over, here comes another Indiana Jones movie July 9, 2021,” Hahn told listeners, introducing the ensemble’s next number, the theme of the franchise.

“To get you in the mood,” he continued, “we’re going to play John Williams’ “Raider’s March.”

The program concluded with three classic American tributes, “The Armed Forces Salute”; “God Bless the USA” and “America the Beautiful.”

The BBWE will join the Bristol Chorale on stage at St. Paul Catholic High School on Saturday, May 11 at 7 p.m. for “Great Americana Songbook.” Admission is $15. Then coming up on Tuesday, May 21 the BBWE will perform at the Bristol Senior Center at 7 p.m. This concert is free with tickets, available at the senior center.

The organization operates solely on donations from community members and music lovers. Equipment is purchased with grant funding from sponsors. Current needs, as listed in Sunday’s program booklet, include two stand carts, two laptops and an E-Flat clarinet. Percussion equipment is also on this wish list.

An album of audience favorites is for sale for $15. To get a copy, mail a check to the Bristol Brass & Wind Ensemble, P.O. Box 1155, Bristol, CT 06011-1155.

Erica Drzewiecki can be reached at 860-801-5097 or

Posted in The Bristol Press, Arts, Bristol on Sunday, 7 April 2019 20:50. Updated: Sunday, 7 April 2019 20:53.