Cookeville Community Band concerts on hold through June

Posted By | May 21, 2020 6:58 am

Dogwood Park’s performance pavilion will be empty come Memorial Day.

No performers. No audience members. No music.

That day would have marked the first in a series of free summer concerts by the Cookeville Community Band. But due to COVID-19, those concerts are on hold.

“The Cookeville Community Band board of directors has decided not to have any rehearsals or concerts in May or June,” the band’s Facebook page says. “We plan to meet again in mid-June to reevaluate things and make decisions about our July concerts.”

The woodwind, brass and percussion ensemble has been performing at Dogwood Park since 2003, having formed shortly after the completion of the performance pavilion. Some of the volunteer members are professional musicians, but most are amateurs. Around 65 gather during any one concert, playing flutes, oboes, bassoons, clarinets, saxophones, trumpets, horns, trombones, euphoniums, tubas, string bass and percussion instruments.

Concerts are typically held every other Monday at 7:30 p.m. throughout the summer with audience members of all ages gathering in lawn chairs, on blankets or on the tiered seating.

“The Community Band concerts at Dogwood Park have become so popular and a staple in our summer schedule,” Rick Woods, Cookeville Leisure Services director, said. “I will really miss not kicking off the summer season with the traditional Memorial Day concert this year, but the safety and protection of band members is a priority and a big factor in the decision to cancel the May and June concerts. The audience may be able to ‘social distance,’ but it is more difficult for a musical ensemble, especially one the size of the Community Band, to stay six feet apart.”

The band’s remaining July concerts are scheduled for July 6 and 20.

“We certainly look forward to being able to gather and perform again,” the band’s Facebook page says. “Until then, stay healthy, and thank you for your support.”

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