Photo_Katrina Bryant Assistant Conductor of Fauquier Community Band Photo Credit HMN Photography.JPG

Katrina Byrant, assistant conductor, Fauquier Community Band 

Mark your calendars for Monday, March 4 at 7 p.m. for what promises to be one of the best concerts of the year! Fauquier Community Band will present “The Music of George Gershwin” at Fauquier High School. Known as one of the great American composers of the early 20thcentury, Gershwin composed music in multiple genres including jazz, blues, popular and classical.  

Fauquier Community Band is expected to play Gershwin’s music with much zeal and zest. The concert will open to the exciting jazz standard, “I Got Rhythm. Next will be a “Porgy and Bess” medley including the well-known favorite “Summertime. Katrina Bryant, assistant conductor of the band, will direct the entire concert and chose the popular repertoire. 

Music includes: “An American in Paris, “Strike Up the Band, and, of course, the ever-popular “Rhapsody in Blue.  

“I grew up in a classical music home and always wanted to be a conductor. My mother was a pianist. It was actually the “Rhapsody in Blue” piece that inspired me to choose an all Gershwin concert, as everyone loves his music,” says Bryant.  

Some of the concert’s musical selections will include vocalists. Rod Lowery will sing “Embraceable You. Vocalist and French horn player Wendy Marie is singing the jazzy “They Can’t Take That Away from Me. Marie is enthusiastic saying, Gershwin's music is timeless and familiar to most audiences. How even truer her words will be when she sings “Someone to Watch Over Me” at the end of the concert.  

The event is family friendly and there is something for everyone to enjoy about the music.  

“The program is appropriate for all ages—a great family outing, a delightful date night or just an escape from the ordinary,” says Sandra Ludes, secretary for the band. Fauquier Community Band presents this free concert and complimentary refreshments as a gift to the community. No tickets are needed for the concert. There is plenty of parking.   

The Gershwin concert takes place in the Fauquier High School auditorium. The entrance is at door D10 on the east side of the building (the right side when facing the front door). Raffle tickets are available as an option to purchase for $1 each or six for $5 and to help cover the band’s expenses. The prizes to raffle winners include gift certificates to popular local businesses. 

A reception follows the concert offering the opportunity to meet the musicians and visit with others in the community. The arts bring people together and build communities. Bryant talks about the value of music education, emphasizing that music education begins at home and in the community. She has four children and the three oldest play the piano. Bryant teaches piano lessons at Allegro Community School for the Arts and also in her home. As part of her music education, Bryant has learned to play most all instruments; she is most proficient on piano, flute, saxophone, trumpet, clarinet and French horn. 

Fauquier Community Band, Inc. is a not-for-profit organization and an affiliate of Fauquier County Parks and Recreation.  Consisting of more than 60 musicians, the band performs concerts throughout the year directed by conductor Paul Hicks and/or assistant conductor Katrina Bryant who joined the band in 2015. For information about future concerts and events, as well as information to join the band, visit: are always presented free of charge and there is no fee to join the band. 



This is the debut column of “The Arts Lady” written by Debra Smyers, an actress, arts consultant, arts manager, professor at George Mason, and co-executive director of Fauquier Community Theatre. It will appear monthly and highlight local arts. She can be reached at or 800-754-4507. 





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