News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Top Story 3

March 11, 2010

Glenn Miller Orchestra bringing timeless music to Valley

TERRE HAUTE — Sixty-five years ago, Army Air Force Maj. Glenn Miller disappeared in a UC-64 Norseman over the English Channel. At the top of his career as a Big Band leader and arranger, Miller was on his way to France to entertain the American G.I.s who had liberated Paris.

Although Miller himself is still listed in U.S. military records as “missing in action,” his unique musical sound has never been lost. Through careful management by his estate — and because his one-of-a-kind sound still attracts music lovers of all ages — the Glenn Miller Orchestra lives on.

On March 23, the official Miller orchestra will make a rare stop in Terre Haute, performing in no less an appropriate venue than the restored Indiana Theatre. Hors d’oeuvres and a wine bar at 6 p.m. precede the show, which starts at 7 p.m.

After being led over the decades by several great musicians, the Glenn Miller Orchestra has been under the baton since 1988 of Larry O’Brien, a trombonist like Miller. Big Bands and O’Brien have been synonymous throughout his long career. Among the bands and orchestra with which he has performed are those of Ray Eberle, Les Elgart and Sammy Kaye. He also was the featured soloist/lead trombonist with the Sam Donahue/Tomy Dorsey Orchestra.

The Glenn Miller Orchestra originally was formed in 1937 by Miller, who wanted his crew to sound different from all the other bands of the time. The distinctive Miller sound is created by a clarinet and tenor saxophone playing melody, combined with three other saxophones playing harmony. Trombones and trumpets support the reeds instead of dominating them.

Miller is known for the dreamy ballad, “Moonlight Serenade,” and he was emphatic that he was never interested in conducting “a jazz band.” But the Miller versions of such songs as “Tuxedo Junction” and “The St. Louis Blues March” can swing as hot as any Big Band of his or the current era.

Glenn Miller’s hits comprise some of the all-time classics of the Big Band repertoire, including “In The Mood,” “A String of Pearls,” “Chattanooga Choo-Choo” and “I’ve Got a Gal In Kalamazoo.”  

After the disappearance and presumed death of Miller in December 1944, the band was reconstituted under the direction of Tex Beneke, its lead tenor saxophonist, singer, and one of Miller’s closest friends. The Miller estate hired Ray McKinley, principal drummer in Miller’s Army Air Force Band to reorganize a new “ghost band” in 1956.

The Glenn Miller Orchestra celebrated its 50th anniversary in June 2006. The musicians travel more than 100,000 miles each year, performing almost every night for 48 weeks. With some 300 playing dates, the orchestra estimates it performs live before more than a half-million people annually.

The Miller band’s stop in Terre Haute will reconnect the spirits of two great musicians of their era. In the late 1930s, before Miller had managed to organize his own band under his own name, he was given the task of forming an American-staffed orchestra for the British bandleader, Ray Noble. Among the stellar musicians Miller recruited for the Noble U.S. orchestra was pianist, composer and orchestra leader Claude Thornhill, who was born and raised in Terre Haute.

 

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Top Story 3
Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Last Mass Lynching in U.S. Remains Unsolved Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Bodies of Malaysia Jet Victims Leave Ukraine Raw: Truck, Train Crash Leads to Fireball Judge Ponders Overturning Colo. Gay Marriage Ban Clinton: "AIDS-Free Generation Within Our Reach" Disabled Veterans Memorial Nearing Completion Home-sharing Programs Help Seniors Fighting Rages Amid Mideast Truce Push Ex-NYC Mayor: US Should Allow Flights to Israel Obama Signs Workforce Training Law Raw: Massive Explosion in Gaza City Raw: Typhoon Brings Heavy Wind, Rain to Taiwan Crash Victims' Remains Reach Ukraine-held City Raw: Plane Lands on New York Highway Raw: Secretary of State Kerry in Israel NYPD Chief Calls for 'use of Force' Retraining Raw: Israel Hits Gaza Targets, Destroys Mosques Police Probing Brooklyn Bridge Flag Switch CDC Head Concerned About a Post-antibiotic Era
NDN Video
CDC Director Warns Of A World Where Antibiotics No Longer Work Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad Jimmy Kimmel Introduces His Baby Girl Swim Daily, Nina Agdal in the Cook Islands Guilty Dog Apologizes to Baby for Stealing Her Toy Prince George Turns 1 and is Already a Trendsetter Train Collides With Semi Truck Carrying Lighter Fluid Kanye West Tells-All on Wedding in "GQ" Interview Tony Dungy Weighs in on Michael Sam Scarlett Johansson Set To Marry In August New Star Wars Episode XII X-Wing Revealed Obama: Putin must push separatists to aid MH17 probe Michigan inmates no longer allowed to wear orange due to 'OITNB' Adam Levine Ties the Knot
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity