Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

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February 8, 2013

Tunes and tons of fun

Kokomo Park Band to perform Sunday.

Kokomo — The tunes of tradition will be serenading anxious audiences Sunday as Kokomo Park Band performs its annual winter concert. Although the band, that got its start in 1902, draws in crowd sizes ranging from 1,000 to 1,500 all summer at Highland Park, the performers are warming up their pipes and excited ears for their 18th annual winter performance at Kokomo High School auditorium Sunday from 2 to 4 p.m.

The free show is full of musical melodies to get your toes tapping and your feet grooving. The performance’s title is enough to get people who love music ready for “An Afternoon of Dance Music.” But, if you’re not sure about the one-two step there’s much entertainment to see as Kokomo Park Band welcomes Richens/Timm Irish Dancers into the musical mix.

This year’s winter performance highlights the homes of all cultures as the program includes songs from all cultures and a flute soloist, Noel Liakos.

Keith Whitford said the performance is as astounding as the musicians who make Kokomo Park Band happen.

“This is not a typical community band. The players are all professional or semi-professional musicians who come from a 70-mile radius or more,” Whitford said. “Some are college music professors, some are band directors — who have kept up on their major instrument — and others work as professional musicians in Indianapolis, Fort Wayne and other areas.”

Whitford said the winter performance is an opportunity to win more fans and welcome their music back for a sneak peek to their summer series.

“[The winter concert] gives us a chance to program music that is better performed inside on a stage with better acoustics than are available outside,” Whitford said. “The event also serves to remind folks we are still here and they need to start sending in donations to support the upcoming season.”

Whitford added no matter what your go-to genre is attending a performance of Kokomo Park Band is guaranteed to work up your musical appetite.

“Every concert provides something for everybody,” Whitford said. “We include a variety of music including diverse selections representing various cultures and ethnic groups.”

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