Buffalo Silver Band
BOSTON — The Boston hills will be alive with the sound of music on March 9, when the Churchill Methodist Church hosts the Buffalo Silver Band for a 4 p.m. concert.
With a history stretching back almost a century, the Buffalo Silver Band is the only British-style brass band in Upstate New York. The Silver Band continues the band performance tradition that was established before the Civil War and rose to prominence at the end of the 19th century, only to fade with the rise of radio and other mass media technologies of the 20th century. The Buffalo Silver Band is part of the resurgence of interest in the performance of this part of American musical heritage.
In 1915, four members of the First Hungarian Baptist Church of Buffalo started a band to augment their Sunday evening services. The ensemble, “The Hungarian Baptist Band” became the “Austin Street Baptist Band” and then the “Buffalo Baptist Silver Band.” Finally, in 1981, the name was changed to the current “Buffalo Silver Band.”
Today, the band maintains the British tradition in its instrumentation and music. Except for percussion, the band is composed entirely of brass instruments. The British-style band differs from an American brass band mainly in that it uses cornets and Eb alto horns, rather than trumpets and French horns. The resulting sound is a bit warmer and darker than the brighter American sound. Comprised of 24 brass players and three percussionists, the band’s repertoire includes a wide variety of music, including traditional marches, pop songs, jazz, classical music, works composed expressly for the brass band genre and even some rock and roll. Recent performances have included the Chautauqua Summer Concert Series, the Albright-Knox First Friday Series and the Ontario Center in Toronto.
The Churchill performance will feature performances by euphonium soloist Diana Bley, trombonist Peter Karda and cornetist Nate Barnes. It is free. Refreshments will be served at intermission.