2020 has turned out to be like nothing any of us born after the end of World War II have ever experienced. We had to cancel the Vintage Band Festival mini-fest that would have taken place on August 1, 2020. Our community of Northfield, the town that defeated the James-Younger gang’s attempted bank robbery in 1876, cancelled the annual Defeat of Jesse James Days celebration for the first time ever since its beginning in 1948. And the internationally reknowned St. Olaf Christmas Festival for 2020 has just been cancelled. All of that will likely make the next sentence easier to understand.
The Vintage Band Festival Board of Directors has decided to cancel Tuba Christmas for 2020. The annual low brass holiday showcase was to have taken place on Saturday, December 5, 2020 at Carleton College in Northfield as it has for the past three years. However, due to the obviously compromising conditions caused by the threat of COVID-19, particularly in indoor settings, this is the wisest and safest course of action.
In the meantime, please support arts organizations of all sorts with whatever financial support and encouragement you can offer. This is a very challenging time for musicians at all levels of engagement, from school children in middle school band to professionals in the finest orchestras in the country.
We hope to bring Vintage Band Festival back to the stage in 2021 and to that end we will continue to monitor guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Minnesota Department of Health as well as our community partners here in Northfield.
Vintage Band Festival, in Northfield, Minnesota, is presenting Tuba Christmas on Saturday, December 7, 2019 at 3 pm. The event is co-sponsored by Carleton College and will take place in Skinner Memorial Chapel on the Carleton campus in Northfield. Registration opens at noon, rehearsal will take place at 1pm and the concert will be at 3pm. The Conductor of Tuba Christmas in Northfield will be Dr. Paul Niemisto, retired music faculty at St. Olaf College.
Tuba Christmas is a national activity that takes place in more than 300 locations across the United States. In each location (churches, hotel and mall atria, outdoor settings, colleges and universities, music halls) tuba and euphonium players get together under the leadership of a local musician or music educator to play Christmas carols. The sound that results is extremely rich and moving. The participants have a fabulous experience and return to play again year after year. Participant ages range from 11-80+.
If you play tuba, sousaphone, euphonium or baritone, please join us! If you’re a teacher of students who play those instruments, please bring your whole section! Also, please bring a music stand if you have one.
Participation fee for musicians is $10. Admission for the audience is free. This is a family-friendly event!
Vintage Band Festival Headquarters is now open for business at 19 Bridge Square in the Northfield Office of Business and Tourism. Hours of service will be 1pm-5pm Monday-Friday. The phone number is 507-581-2360. Our email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
The office will be staffed by two student interns from St. Olaf College: Mickaylie Bade and Landry Forrest. Mickaylie is a rising senior English major with a concentration in Women’s and Gender Studies and Landry is a rising sophomore with the goal of a Bachelor of Arts in Music and Arts Organization Management.
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Vintage Band Festival Announces Grant Award from Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council
Northfield, Minnesota—Vintage Band Festival is pleased to announce that it has received a $3,000 grant from the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council (SEMAC) in support of one of the performing bands at this summer’s one-day festival on July 29. The award also covers expenses for sound production at the event. SEMAC has been a strong supporter and advocate for Vintage Band Festival since the festival was launched in 2006 and this recent grant continues that tradition.
Vintage Band Festival was founded in 2006 by Dr. Paul Niemisto, at the time a faculty member of the St. Olaf College Music Department. The inspiration for staging a series of brass and wind band concerts simultaneously at multiple outdoor venues in Northfield, Minnesota came from observing similar events while visiting small towns in Germany and Austria. The local community responded enthusiastically to the idea and Vintage Band Festival is now a thriving and beloved ongoing enterprise in Northfield. Four-day festivals have been held in 2006, 2010, 2013 and 2016. Recently, a variation on the concept was created and now one-day summer events are staged during the intervals between the grand four-day events. The next one-day Vintage Band Festival will be held July 29, 2017.