Saturday, July 14, 2012

Yankee Doodle Pops

"Weather forecast for tonight: Dark. Continued dark overnight, with widely scattered light by morning." George Carlin

EVERY YEAR THE Des Moines Symphony puts on a free concert on the grounds of the state capitol to celebrate the Fourth of July, complete with accompanying fireworks of course. It wouldn't be practical or safe to have thousands of people driving, parking and trying to find places for blankets and chairs in the dusk to darkness necessary for fireworks, so there's always an opening act as a draw beforehand while it's still bright sun.

This year it was the Turner Center Jazz Orchestra that Paul plays in. I was lucky enough to have a seat in the front row of the VIP section, and Paul joined me there after his performance for the rest of the night. 

Governor Terry Branstad and his family were seated in the front row with us, a few chairs away, and after the concert, Paul said, "There aren't many advantages to being married to a trombone player, but every now and then, you get to have as good a seat as the governor's." 

Here are some pictures from the night.

Richard Early is the executive director of the Des Moines Symphony. He arranged
for the TJCO to be the opening act. Jim Eklof on drums has been the drummer for
 40 years for, as Johnny Carson always referred to her, The Marvelous Marilyn Maye.

Paul in the center, Joel Poppen on trumpet (right),
Jim Bovinette (left), and Don Jaques on saxophone in front.

The wonderful Janey Hooper sang some tunes with the band.

Drake University professor Andy Classen is
the conductor of the TJCO. 
Part of the Des Moines Symphony's string section.

Music and fireworks.

Conductor Joseph Giunta congratulate
concertmaster Jonathan Sturm.

The Iowa State Capitol.

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