Press Release – Concert to Honor Veterans

September 21 , 2023                      

CONTACT: CALEB BAILEY, 860-443-2876, [email protected]  

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Press Release- October 20 Concert to Honor Veterans in Willimantic


Free Concert at ECSU Will Feature Armed Forces Medley, Dixieland, Rhapsody in Blue

As a special addition to the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra’s 77th season, the New London-based orchestra, led by Music Director & Conductor Toshiyuki Shimada, will give a free public concert in Willimantic on Friday, Oct. 20, 2023, at 7:00pm. Sponsored by ASA Environmental Products, Inc. and Chelsea Groton Bank, the concert will take place in Eastern Connecticut State University’s Fine Arts Instructional Center Concert Hall, 306 High Street, on the ECSU campus. All ages are welcome.

To reserve free tickets, veterans or family of veterans may email [email protected] or you may click the link below!

Reserve Tickets

Area veterans are encouraged to attend. To honor them, the ECSO will play a medley of the official songs of the six services of the U.S. Armed Forces: Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, and Space Force.

After performing works by Amy Beach, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, and George Gershwin, the ECSO will “shift gears” to play familiar tunes in Dixieland style with the Tom Brown 6, a group led by Principal Trumpet Tom Brown, who recently retired from the U.S. Coast Guard Band. Versatile Connecticut-based pianist Gary Chapman will be the soloist for the Gershwin piece, the famous Rhapsody in Blue, which premiered almost exactly 100 years ago, with Gershwin himself at the keyboard.

The ECSO most recently performed in Willimantic in February of 2020. The free series helps to celebrate the connection between the Willimantic area and the orchestra, which was formed from the 1954 merger of the New London Symphony and the Willimantic Symphony. Another well-received series brings the ECSO to Norwich annually to present a free Palm Sunday concert at the Cathedral of St. Patrick.

In New London, the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra’s 2023-24 season of six Saturday-evening concerts at the Garde Arts Center, 289 State Street, begins on Oct. 21. Six- and four-concert subscriptions may be purchased by calling 860-443-2876 or visiting Tickets for individual concerts—on Oct. 21, Nov. 18, Jan. 27, Feb. 24, March 30, and April 27—go on sale at on Sept. 25.