H-F Community Band prepares for two summer concerts

Correction: This story originally listed an incorrect date for the first concert. The concert will be at 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 26, in Irwin Park. The Chronicle apologizes for the error.

Irwin Park will be filled with the sounds of traditional concert band music this summer during two performances by The H-F Community Band on June 26 and July 10. The band is a longstanding tradition in the Homewood-Flossmoor Community and will begin its 57th concert season.

Musicians from the Homewood-Flossmoor community as well as other surrounding suburbs come together to form a full concert band that performs each summer for the community. This year, the community band will consist of over 50 musicians who will be playing brass, woodwind and percussion instruments.

The H-F Community Band was started in 1963 and was led for 30 years by former H-F High School band director, Robert Hindsley. Originally, the band performed six concerts in six weeks over the summer at Ridge-Central School.

This year, the band will be conducted by long-time community band member and Flossmoor School District 161 director of orchestras, Robert Calhoon. Calhoon grew up in the Flossmoor community and has been playing in the band since the 1980s.

Matt Johnson, the previous director of the band, stepped down last year and Calhoon stepped up to become the conductor for the first time this summer. Calhoon is looking forward to working with all the musicians he’s met and played with in the community throughout the years.

“It’s just a really neat opportunity to make music with a whole wide variety of people from all different walks of life,” Calhoon said.

Tammy Anderson is a longtime Homewood-Flossmoor resident who has played the flute in the community band since the summer of 1989. Anderson has witnessed the evolution of the band throughout the years, and one of the most meaningful things to her is coming together to make music with others in the community.

“There’s just something about when you’re playing in a group and you’re part of creating that music, there’s a feeling that is different from everything else,” Anderson said.

Calhoon has been preparing for the concert for months working with the H-F park district which has been a longtime partner of the community band. The band and Homewood-Flossmoor Park District work together to schedule concert dates, rehearsals and to make sure they have a space to perform.

Practicing for the performances can be a whirlwind for Calhoon and the band members as they only rehearse all together three times before their performances. The three practices this year will be held on at 7 p.m. on June 17, June 24 and July 8.

The band is still open to accepting members for this season. Those who are interested can sign up by emailing [email protected]. The band’s concerts will be held at 7 p.m. at Irwin Park, 18120 Highland Ave.

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