TubaChristmas Scheduled for Dec. 16

By at November 30, 2017 | 3:45 pm | Print

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Dozens of amateur and professional tuba and lower brass musicians of all ages from the region – and beyond – are tuning up for the annual New Britain TubaChristmas, set to take the stage at Trinity-on-Main on Dec. 16.

New Britain attorney Anne Marshall has organized the event since its debut in 2015 and continues to be gratified by the response, which has included a packed house at both performances.

“Each year, and especially in the first year, we had no idea how a New Britain TubaChristmas would be received since the concert is free to the public and players register on the day of the performance,” said Marshall. “Right from the first note, we’ve been overwhelmed by the enthusiasm from the public. An hour after the first TubaChristmas, the event was being called a new city holiday tradition.”

It was after Marshall heard about TubaChristmas performances nearly 40 miles from New Britain that she began envisioning how to bring that musical hardware to the Hardware City.

“It is such a unique and fun program that I knew we had to have one here,” Marshall said.

With an organizing committee and a roster of business and community sponsors making it a reality, New Britain TubaChristmas came to life before a standing-room-only audience two years ago.

It is only one of two TubaChristmas performances in the state.

New Britain follows much of the program developed by the TubaChristmas home organization, founded in 1974 by Harvey Phillips as a tribute to his teacher and mentor William J. Bell, who was born on Christmas Day in 1902. On the ice rink at Rockefeller Center, performers honored Bell with traditional Christmas and holiday music. The program has changed very little in the 43 years that have followed, with the tuba taking a rare spot at center stage.

There are hundreds of TubaChristmas affiliates across the country and in Canada.

Marshall said the program offers a lively and fun hour of four-part harmony and sing-along music, with conductor Walter Gibson and narrator Mary Anne Nunn. Also featured is the recognition of players in several categories, including the youngest and oldest performers, the one who traveled the farthest and the best decorated tuba, awarded by applause from the crowd.

“It is a community event in the best sense…we are quite proud of encouraging our young musicians to take part,” said Marshall. “It has proven to be a lot of fun for families.”

New Britain TubaChristmas is scheduled for 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 16 at Trinity-on-Main, 69 Main St. There is no charge to attend. For more information, visit nbtubachristmas.com.

.News Local

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