River City Brass – Big Band Hits




It don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that swing!  With that catchy phrase, Allegheny RiverStone Center for the Arts (ARCA) will present the internationally acclaimed River City Brass – America’s favorite Brass Band – at its first concert in Emlenton at the Crawford Center on Friday, June 20 at 8:00 PM.

Conductor James Gourlay, acknowledged as one of the world’s greatest brass band conductors, will lead the 28-piece ensemble with a program entitled “Big Band Brass,” sure to please any audience.  Their concert will feature hits made famous by the ‘Rat Pack’ – Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. – as well as the beloved big band sounds of Glen Miller, Duke Ellington, Maynard Ferguson, Buddy Rich and many more.

To add to your appetite for this debut event, discounted ticket prices are available for a limited number of seats from May 1 to May 31.

Founded in 1981 by the late Robert Bernat (Conductor and Music Director 1981-1994), the RCB was the first professional concert band to be established in the United States in over 25 years.  Today, the River City Brass performs a 56-concert series in Western Pennsylvania.  In addition, the 28-piece ensemble tours extensively throughout the Unites States with more than 60 performances each year as part of community concert series, major symphony pops series and arts festivals. One local resident became very excited about the Band coming to Emlenton because a friend heard the Band in Portland, Oregon and offered a glowing review of their performance on the West Coast.  For thirty years, the RCB has delighted audiences in the Pittsburgh region, nationally and internationally.  Their most recent international tour took them to Italy in May of 2013.

Mr. Gourlay, a native of Scotland, began his career at the age of 18 as the Principal Tubist of the Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the Orchestra of the Zurich Opera.  James also conducted Great Britain’s Grimethorpe Colliery Band, leading one of the most internationally lauded and prominent brass ensembles in the world on a tour throughout the British Isles, Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.

In its ongoing commitment to education, RCB proudly has maintained an acclaimed youth band and in 2012 inaugurated a ‘Saturday Music’ program for students in grades 5 to 12, partnering with the Pittsburgh Public Schools.  This program has been designed to explore and grow the musical interest and abilities of Pittsburgh’s public school students.

The River City Brass is acclaimed for its signature style of programming.  Every performance features superb soloists and some lighthearted fun!  Often called the “Boston Pops—In Brass,” the band’s extensive repertoire covers a wide range of styles and musical genres.  They are equally expressive and comfortable performing American tunes, Big Band jazz and swing, music from Broadway and Hollywood, classic and contemporary masterworks and—of course—traditional marches, a staple of America’s heritage.  The Band has fifteen recordings of this widely ranging repertoire to its credit, the latest of which are ‘River City Brass 30 Years’ and ‘Christmas Brasstacular.’  Recordings will available to purchase at the concert.

Thanks to the sponsorship of Farmers National Bank, Hovis Truck Service, Hickman Lumber Co. and Allegheny Mountain Hardwood Flooring and The Foxburg Team, family-affordable prices and an early bird discount will be offered for this first-of-a-kind Crawford Center event.

Early bird ticket buyers may take advantage of discounted prices from May 1 to May 31-Adults $15 and Students $5-(credit card/check) by calling the Foxburg Inn at 724-659-3116.

Regular pricing is offered from June 1 through June 20 – Adults $18, Students $8-(credit card/check) by calling the Foxburg Inn at 724-659-3116.  Remaining tickets will be available at the door the night of the performance.  Call now!