Audiences can expect to hear songs such as “God Bless America,” from Irving Berlin, to “The Way You Look Tonight,” by Jerome Kern.
The evening will kick-off with the “Star-Spangled Banner.” The orchestra will also perform the National Anthem of Canada, “O Canada,” because July 1 is the 150th anniversary of the founding of Canada. During intermission, audiences will enjoy the ice cream social.
A choir of about 30 voices, including area church choir members and students from Lakota, will also join the orchestra, and sing on several of the songs.
“Live music performances are very important. We are in this day and age when everything is instantaneous. You can go and download whatever piece of music you want to hear, and put it on your personal device and take it with you, but there is something special about the communal activity of coming together and being part of an audience at a concert,” Schirmer said.
“There’s also something very special about the musicians coming together to create music, and that interaction between an audience and performers is something you don’t get in a recording. Patriotic concerts go back in this country to right after the Civil War, and that tradition has been going on since then,” she said.
West Chester Symphony Orchestra is made up of about 60 members, including strings, woodwinds, brass and percussion. About 10 members have been with the orchestra since its inception.
The group performs about six to eight free concerts per year. West Chester Symphony orchestra will return to the park on Labor Day to wrap up the season’s concert series.
“We were the first concert-ever in Keehner Park. We were there when the amphitheater was dedicated, and that was Labor Day of 1997, and we’ve continued with that tradition,” Schirmer said.
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How to go
What: West Chester Concert Series
Where: Keehner Park Amphitheatre, 7211 Barret Road, West Chester
When: 7-9 p.m. Saturdays
On Saturday, June 24: Southwestern Ohio Symphonic Band
On Saturday, July 1: West Chester Symphony Orchestra – Ice cream social
Details: Guests may bring chairs. Picnics are welcome. Alcohol is not permitted.
More info: For a complete schedule, go online to www.WestChesterOH.org.