WATSONVILLE—Music concerts and other live events might not be happening this holiday season, but the Watsonville Community Band (WCB) hopes it can still bring a little joy into people’s homes.
On Monday WCB released a new music video, dubbing it their Christmas “concert” for the year. About 25 musicians, each in the safety of their own home, played “The Teddy Bear’s Picnic” by John W. Bratton and “All I Want for Christmas is You” by Mariah Carey and Walter Afanasieff. The clips were then edited together to create the sound of a full band.
WBC Board of Directors President Dana Sales says it’s important for the band, currently led by Music Director and Conductor Brad Gronroos, to keep engaging with the community during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The band has continued to stay in touch as much as possible,” he said. “Creating seasonal videos is our way of continuing to contribute to the performing arts scene in our community.”
Sales praised Wendy Rothwell, a UC Santa Cruz professor who plays saxophone in the band, for editing all of the clips together to make a seamless production.
WBC is a public-benefit nonprofit corporation composed entirely of volunteers. They have appeared in almost every major parade on the West Coast, as well as hospitals, festivals and several televised concerts. They have amassed 325 first place awards at competitions and even played at the Fourth of July concert for President Bill Clinton in 1996.
They also created the Watsonville Youth Band, aiming to promote music education by teaching local students how to learn and enjoy making music.
“We have been part of the community for nearly 75 years and we plan on being around for another 75 at least,” Sales said. “We can’t wait to get back to the rehearsal room… and perform throughout the region.”