Wayne Speller, a familiar figure in Sidney, will play Last Post and Reveille when Sidney Concert Band plays its annual Salute to Our Veterans concert Sunday Nov. 10th at Sidney’s Mary Winspear Centre with the show starting at 2 p.m. (Colin Savage/Submitted).

Sidney Concert Band honours veterans with Sunday performance

Concert includes a traditional wreath-laying and classic tunes from the Big Band era of 1940s

The Last Post and other familiar tunes are on the set list when the Sidney Concert Band (SCB) pays tribute to veterans on Sunday, Nov. 10 at Sidney’s Mary Winspear Centre with the show starting at 2 p.m.

SCB consists out of 50 volunteer musicians, who have been playing together since 1987, and their upcoming show has become part and parcel of an annual tradition honouring Canadian veterans with Bruce Ham conducting the Salute to Our Veterans concert.

The show consists of two distinct halves: a service concert and an entertainment concert. The first opens with a wreath-laying service with members of the local Kittyhawk Air Cadets forming the Colour Party. During the wreath-laying, the band will play Memento with band member Jim Kingham reciting the poem Why Wear A Poppy.

This portion of the show also features Piper Mel Johnston, the official piper of the Lt. Governor. A former Pipe Major of the Canadian Scottish Regimental Association Pipe Band, Johnston will play a couple of pieces himself (The Piper’s Lament, Amazing Grace) and accompany highland dancers from the Bon Accord Highland Dance School under instructor Lynne Griffith.

Wayne Speller will play the Last Post and Reveille in continuing his familiar role. He says he cannot quite recall when he first started or how often he has played Last Post. “It must be at least seven years, usually once or twice each year for the Sidney Concert Band, at nursing homes and for the odd military parade,” he said.

RELATED: Sidney Concert Band performs salute to Korean War veterans

The second half of the show unfolds in the style of a live 1940s radio show, with Speller returning to the stage to play Hoagy Carmichael’s Star Dust as a tribute to legendary trumpeter Harry James.

“Harry James was a big band orchestra leader and famous trumpet soloist for 44 years,” said Speller. “He was most famous at the beginning of his career, playing on radio shows, in films and on the nightclub circuit throughout the 1940s and early 1950s. Harry had a distinctive flamboyant style of trumpet-playing featuring heavy vibrato, [half-valve] and lip glissandi (slurring) and a considerable range. He and his orchestra continued to be among the most recognized big bands well into the 1960s and 70s.”

Audiences can also expect to hear other favourites from the era of Big Bands, including A Tribute to Artie Shaw featuring SCB clarinetists Diana Gordon and David Rogers, Glenn Miller in Concert and a Salute to Bob Hope. Tickets are available online or at Mary Winspear Centre’s box office with more info available at 250-656-0275. Organizers encourage veterans to please wear their medals.


Like us on Facebook and follow @wolfgang_depner

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Parkland grads mark end to high school in virtual ceremony

North Saanich grads pre-tape graduation ceremony days before school officially reopened

Vancouver Island’s current COVID-19 case count officially hits zero

Of the 130 recorded Island Health cases, five people have died, 125 recovered

Playgrounds back in the swing of things on the West Shore

Langford, View Royal, Colwood reopen parks, playgrounds

MISSING: High-risk woman last seen on May 25

Police are asking for the public’s help in locating Jennifer Daughinee-Mendelson

Black bear sighting reported on UVic campus

University urging residents in the area to be careful

MAP: Dr. Henry reveals which B.C. regions have seen most COVID-19 cases

B.C. health officials release a first look at how the novel coronavirus has reached all corners of the province

POLL: Are you sending your children back to school this month?

Classrooms looked decidedly different when students headed back to school for the… Continue reading

Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park at large

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

No charges to be laid against 22 northern B.C. pipeline protesters

Twenty-two people were arrested in February, but Crown has decided not to pursue charges

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Plan in place for BC Ferries to start increasing service levels

Ferry corporation reaches temporary service level agreement with province

B.C. starts to see employment return under COVID-19 rules

Jobless rate for young people still over 20% in May

Alert Bay resident carves tribute to his community kicking COVID-19’s butt

‘Our little village crushed the curve with love and commitment’

End of an Era: Tofino hair studio closes shop

“We were getting excited to start ramping up and then all of sudden we had to close our doors.”

Most Read