Watertown First Brigade Band | Music on Mondays

This semester, the Watertown First Brigade Band starred as the featured artists in Maranatha’s Music on Mondays concert series. Performing nineteenth century band works, the group presented two concerts: one at 6PM for families with young children and another at 7PM for the Watertown area community.

The Watertown First Brigade Band models itself after the band formed by eighteen Union soldiers from the Brodhead Brass Band in 1864. Under the command of General William T. Sherman, these men left rural Wisconsin and participated in military campaigns in Northern Georgia and the Carolina’s. More than 130 years later, men and women of varied ages and occupations keep the tradition alive by performing around 40 concerts a year. For preserving historical music, the group receives support from the Wisconsin Historical Society and the Heritage Military Music Foundation.

For the concert in Burckart Hall, the brigade members play 1860’s band music in period outfits and on antique instruments. After the concert, they allowed attendees to touch the instruments. “I thoroughly enjoyed the First Brigade concert!” commented Samuel Robertson, who got to hold some of the antique instruments. “My favorite parts were getting to see the different antique instruments, hearing their rich, mellow tone, and, afterward, getting to play the Eb, over-the-shoulder, tuba. I also found the percussionist’s antics hilarious.”

“Attending the First Brigade Band concert was an entertaining and educational experience!” added Annika Taubert. “I enjoyed learning about the many different instruments (all originals from the Civil War era) as well as learning about the history surrounding many of the pieces and the performances that occurred in the 1800s. The band performed fun pieces such as “Yankee Doodle,” patriotic pieces such as “The Star-Spangled Banner,” and even sacred pieces such as a medley including various hymns. It was definitely a fun and unique concert to attend!”

Visit their website to hear more of their recordings. Click here to see photos from their concert.

To learn more about Maranatha’s Music on Mondays Concert Series, go to mbu.edu/musiconmondays. In addition to learning about upcoming concerts, you can also find information on advertising your business through concert sponsorship.