SARASOTA, FL – Since its founding in 2016, Music Compound has been a place where members of all ages can learn to sing and play music – or further hone existing skills – and make friends, becoming a community where a love of music is the common thread. Now Music Compound is taking on a new endeavor, an adult program called the Gulf Coast New Horizons Concert Band.
The Concert Band will enable adults ages 50+ to play music while making friends. In addition to weekly classes where participants will learn to play their instruments and learn musical compositions together, group and private lessons will be available through Music Compound, with discounts for Gulf Coast New Horizons members. There will also be performance opportunities throughout the community.
The leader of the Gulf Coast New Horizons Concert Band is David DeWitt, who has been with Music Compound since 2018 – it was his idea to launch the New Horizons program here locally. He taught in the Rochester and Buffalo city schools for 35 years and served as lead band director at the Buffalo Academy for the Visual and Performing Arts. He also served as an adjunct professor at Canisius College in Buffalo, where he directed the school’s jazz ensemble. His retirement in 2016 and subsequent move to Sarasota brought new opportunities to perform as a trombone and tuba player. His musical versatility and larger-than-life personality have quickly made him among the most in-demand brass players in the region.
“I am very excited to be taking on the helm of the Gulf Coast New Horizons Band and look forward to seeing this unique ensemble develop and grow,” DeWitt said.
The instruments that will be featured in the Concert Band include brass, woodwinds and percussion; Music Compound is partnering with a rental company for players who do not own their own instruments. Players with previous experience as well as beginners are welcome. Interested community members can learn more during an information session on Thursday, September 23 at 10 a.m. at Music Compound (1751 Cattlemen Rd., Sarasota). Weekly two-hour rehearsals will begin the week of October 11.
“Music Compound is excited to have a program exclusive to adults with an interest in playing music and being part of our music community,” said Music Compound owner Jenny Townsend. “Learning and playing in such a group fills important needs for adults, including intellectual stimulation, socializing as part of a group, and the anticipation of exciting events. There are innumerable mental and physical benefits for participants to enjoy.”
The Gulf Coast New Horizons program is affiliated with the New Horizons International Music Association, Inc. New Horizons Music programs provide entry points to music making for adults, including those with no musical experience as well as those who were active in school music programs but have been inactive for a while. The organization, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, now includes more than 180 New Horizons bands, string orchestras, choirs and other music groups, with over 10,000 players in the U.S., Canada, Australia and Ireland.
A special introductory rate of $100/month will be offered for those who register by October 7; $45 registration fee required for all participants (includes a Music Compound shirt). Go to musiccompound.com/gulfcoastnewmusic or call (941) 379-9100 to register.
About Music Compound
The Music Compound provides an environment to inspire, collaborate and educate children and adults in pursuit of their love of music. The goal is to transform dreams into reality by providing a contemporary and influential environment for musicians of all ages. For more information, visit musiccompound.com.