Sweet music: Batavia Concert Band makes 2023 debut at Centennial Park
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Sweet music: Batavia Concert Band makes 2023 debut at Centennial Park

Jul 13, 2023

BATAVIA — Music filled the smoky evening air at Centennial Park this week as the Batavia Concert Band began its 99th season.

The musicians, conducted by Director John Bailey, were instrumental in entertaining the public Wednesday.

“We only missed a handful of years during World War II and, of course, we did not play during he summer of 2020,” said General Manager Jason Smith.”This is the 99th year of our band and we’re glad to have you here.”


The band performed “The Start-Spangled Banner and the set included other songs such as “Overture for Winds,” “To a Distant Place,” “An Ellington Portrait,” “Birdland by Josef Zawinul” and “Sabre and Spurs.”

The show was partly to honor the life of Nancy Hartwick (1944-2023), Attica, Batavia and Brockport music teacher.

Smith asked GO ART! Executive Director Greg Hallock to come forward early in the show. GO ART! has been the band’s largest supporter over the last 30 years, Smith told the audience seated in front of him.

“They make up one-third of our operating budget,” he said. “I’d like to introduce Greg Hallock and I have a special award for Greg. For the past six or seven years, we’ve recognized folks and organizations that have assisted the band. This year, we are real excited to honor GO ART! under the leadership of Greg Hallock.” Hallock received a plaque on behalf of GO ART! and a check to the arts organization from the band.


The GO ART! executive director said the organization was just doing its job, but that it was great to have the recognition anyway.

“They do the work to get this money that he’s talking about,” Hallock said. “We give out grants, so they apply for the grants to do what they love doing. We encourage that to keep happening.”

This year, GO ART distributed about $210,000 in grant funding to over 50 organizations.

“We’re hoping that that continues to grow. I usually come in and try to tell people about the grants and how to apply,” Hallock said. “We are getting so many applications that we need to get more and more panelists to review them. That is open to the public. If you’re interested in being on a panel to help decide where the money gets spent in Genesee and Orleans counties, please consider spending your time to do that. You can go to goart.org and sign up to volunteer as a way to give back to your community and help the arts.”

Hallock said he was honored to receive the award.

“Thank you, Jason. Thank you to all of you who play and keep coming back and doing this year after year,” he said.

By Brian Quinn, https://www.thedailynewsonline.com

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