Friday, September 13, 2019

Annual Parade of Bands This Sunday

The annual Parade of Bands at the Ashland County Fair will be held this Sunday, Sept. 15 at 2 p.m. at the Fairgrounds Grandstand. This community-favorite event will kickoff with the Ashland University Marching Band under the direction of Joseph Lewis, Jr., Director of Bands, and will also feature performances by all of the area high school marching bands.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Community Band Begins Fall Rehearsals, Sep. 10

The Ashland Area Community Concert Band (AACCB) begins its twenty-seventh season with its weekly rehearsals on Tuesday, Sep. 10 from 7:30-9 p.m. in the Center for the Arts' Elizabeth Pastor Recital Hall. Under the co-direction of Ashland University Director of Bands Joseph Lewis, Jr., and Dave Wolbert, AACCB is for those that loved playing in band in high school or college and want the opportunity to play again. Performances for the ensemble this fall include a performance at the University with the Ashland University Symphonic Band on Saturday, December 7 at 7:30 p.m..

Open to all adults and high school students with the permission of the ensemble's director, requirements for AACCB membership are the ability to play a wind or percussion instrument (no need to be a virtuoso); an interest in playing for enjoyment; desire to play a wide variety of music for the public; an interest in meeting new people who share a common interest and availability for rehearsals on Tuesday evenings.

A nominal membership fee of $25 for adults and $15 for high school students is requested and payable by the fourth week of rehearsals to continue participation for the semester. The membership fee is payable at the Ashland University Box Office via phone at 419.289.5125 or online at by clicking on the "Buy Single Tickets" icon.

For further information, contact Joe Lewis at or 419.289.5132.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Ashland Area Chorus Begins Rehearsals, 8/26

The Ashland Area Chorus (AAC), under the direction of Libby Moore Slade, announces their fall schedule including rehearsals, concerts and membership requirements.

Beginning Monday, Aug. 26, Ashland Area Chorus rehearsals are held on Monday evenings from 7-8:45 p.m. in Room 242 of the Center for the Arts.

Founded by Dr. Rowland Blackley in 1998, the AAC is dedicated to a mission of learning great music and singing it beautifully. The chorus is open to all singers from Ashland and surrounding counties and includes Ashland University faculty, staff and students as well as other singers from the wider community. Though no formal audition is required for membership, AAC members must be pitch accurate (sing 'on key') and be able to learn and perform their parts successfully. Previous choral experience is helpful.

Membership in AAC is open to all adults. Students still in high school may also participate with the permission of the ensemble's director. A nominal membership fee of $25 for adults and $15 for high school students is requested and payable by the fourth week of rehearsals to continue participation in the ensemble for the semester. The membership fee is payable at the Ashland University Box Office online at by clicking on the "Buy Single Tickets" icon.

For further information, contact the Chorus’ director Libby Slade at or (419) 685-5460.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Reed Busy Performing Throughout NE Ohio

Dr. Thomas Reed, professor of Music and chair of the Music and Theatre Departments, has given a number of performances in recent months. 
  • Played saxophone with the Cleveland Orchestra in performances of Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue" at Blossom Music Center July 5 and 6.
  • Performed as Assistant Principal Clarinet with the Blossom Festival Band on July 3 and 4. 
  • On June 29 he played saxophone with the Cleveland Jazz Orchestra. 
  • In May and June he played clarinet and saxophone in the Cleveland Orchestra's performances of the film score to "An American in Paris" at Severance Hall.
  • And played Bass Clarinet with the Akron Symphony in the concert version of "West Side Story." 
  • In March, he performed as Principal Clarinet with the Akron Symphony in Strauss' "Also Sprach Zarathustra" and works by Korngold and Adams.
  • Performed on the CD "Blue is More Than a Color," by Youngstown State University faculty member Dave Morgan. On the CD Reed plays baritone saxophone and bass clarinet, and is clarinet soloist on the song "Coisa Nova." The CD is available on Spotify and iTunes.

Monday, June 24, 2019

Blackley to Conduct Annual "Pops in the Park"

The Guy C. Myers Memorial Band Shell at Ashland City's Brookside Park will host its annual "Pops in the Park" concert by the Ashland Symphony Orchestra  and Ashland Area Chorus on Sunday, June 30 at 8 p.m. 

Under the direction of Dr. Ron Blackley, audience members will have the chance to sing along to popular movie musical numbers from “Mamma Mia!,” “La La Land” and “The Greatest Showman.” The concert will also include several patriotic pieces in honor of Independence Day including the “Armed Forces Salute,” “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” “America the Beautiful” and two marches by John Philip Sousa: “Semper Fidelis” and “Stars and Stripes Forever.” The symphony will bring back the “1812 Overture” featuring mock cannon fire from Civil War Battery D from the 1st Ohio Light Artillery. Audience members will be provided with paper bags and sparklers to set off during the performance as well.

From 6:45 p.m. to 7:45 p.m., ASO’s instrument petting zoo will be open to participants of all ages
interested in learning about different musical instruments.

Freewill donations will be collected during the performance which will benefit both the ASO and Band Shell.

In the event of inclement weather the concert will be moved to Ashland High School’s Archer
Auditorium at 8 p.m.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Salvo to Conduct His Final Community Band Concert

On Sunday evening, Leonard Salvo will take the baton for the final time, leading the Ashland Area Community Concert Band that he formed 26 years ago for the annual Father’s Day show at the Guy C. Myers Band Shell.

Signifying the end of an era, the band’s new leaders — Joseph Lewis, the director of bands at Ashland University, and Dave Wolbert, who teaches music at Ashland High School — also will conduct a couple of numbers on Sunday.

The Father’s Day concert will open the Band Shell’s Summer Concert Series. The show will start at 6 p.m. with family-friendly favorite, the Magic of Eli, followed by the Ashland Area Community Concert Band at 8 p.m.

“The thing I’m going to miss most is the interaction I have with folks in the group,” Salvo said. “Some people have been in the group 26 years. So they’re friends, basically.”

Sunday’s band concert will include lighter pieces, such as selections from “West Side Story” and “Mary Poppins Returns,” along with a personal piece for Salvo, called “Pride of the Peninsula.”

The march was written by Salvo’s college professor, Thomas Tyra, at Eastern Michigan University, where Salvo earned his bachelor’s degree in music education.

“I just want to have something in the last concert that was personal to me,” Salvo said. “He was one of my mentors. He recommended me for all the jobs I got.” 

Monday, June 3, 2019

RSVP's Being Accepted for 1st Annual Marching Band Festival

This is an open invitation to the first annual Ashland University Festival of Bands to be held in Jack Miller Stadium on the campus of Ashland University. The event will be held on Saturday, Sep. 28 starting at 7 p.m. This is not an OMEA sanctioned or competitive event.

The evening will begin with a combined performance of the Star-Spangled Banner with all the participating bands. After that, each band will have approximately 10-15 minutes to perform their show. The evening will culminate in a final performance given by the Ashland University Eagle Marching Band and combined performances of a few marching band favorites. There will be concessions available throughout the event and the hope is to get some good film/audio of each performance.

Please R.S.V.P. as soon as possible via the information below if you can participate! It is sure to be a great performance and a good time for all. I do hope you will be able to attend.

Joe Lewis
Director of Bands, Ashland University
phone: 419.289.5132