Frontier Brass Band putting on what could be final performance in Yuma
Tonight’s concert could be the last chance Yuma County fans will have to enjoy a U.S. Army Frontier Brass Band performance, because, according to Staff Sgt. Freddie Valenzuela, the nine-member ensemble is scheduled to be deactivated in November.
“If this is the case, then we wanted to come out to Yuma one more time to play,” Valenzuela said. “We love coming out here.”
The band, which is part of the 36-member 62nd U.S. Army Military Intelligence Corps Band, from Fort Huachuca, will perform a free public concert at 7 p.m. Friday at the Historic Yuma Theater in downtown Yuma. Doors open at 6:15 p.m. and the performance will last about an hour and a half.
As of Wednesday afternoon, there were only 90 tickets remaining. Tickets are free and available at the Yuma Art Center, limited to two per person. For more information, call 928-373-5202. The Yuma Art Center, which includes the historic theater, is located at 254 S. Main St. in Yuma.
Valenzuela explained that the Frontier Brass Band has begun its fall concert series and Yuma is not only their first stop, but one of their favorite stops.
“The theater is always packed. It is always our best audience,” Valenzuela said. “Coming here makes our job really special and we feel supported.”
He added that the Historic Yuma Theater is also a great place to play.
“It is a beautiful theater and the sound is really good so we don’t have to amplify it very much,” Valenzuela said.
In what has the makings of a goodbye tour, the Frontier Brass Band will also be performing in Barstow, Calif., Orange County and in the San Fernando Valley this concert series.
Concert goers can expect a variety of specially arranged live musical numbers during the performance, which Valenzuela said will have a New Orleans “Mardi Gras American Jazz” theme.
“We have a lot of fun playing it. Besides the traditional Mardi Gras tunes you will hear pop jazz tunes mixed in to it,” Valenzuela said. “We love all music, but this gives us an opportunity be more energetic on stage and interact with the audience because we are not seated.”
While Army bands play everything from traditional style music to more contemporary tunes, Valenzuela said Brass Band music is becoming more mainstream.
“It is really good dance music,” said Valenzuela, who has performed in Yuma 12 times. “You can shake your head to it.”
There is a very slight chance that the Frontier Brass Band could return to Yuma later this year for a Christmas performance, but that may not happen.
Valenzuela said the ensemble probably won’t exist past November.
He explained that the U.S. Army Military Intelligence Corps Band is being inactivated by October of next year and merged into another Army band at a different installation.
James Gilbert can be reached at email@example.com or 5396854. Find him on Facebook at www. Facebook.com/YSJamesGilbert or on Twitter @YSJamesGilbert.
TONIGHT’S FREE CONCERT at the Historic Yuma Theater may be the last time the U.S. Army Frontier Brass Band performs in Yuma. The 9-member ensemble is scheduled to be deactivated in November. Tickets are free and available at the Yuma Art Center, limited to two per person. For more information, call 928-373-5202.