Snake River New Horizon Band invites all to its annual Friends and Family musical program

May 4, 2019

We all need friendship and a reminder can come to us in different ways. It could be the weather conditions we have had, national political edginess or simply a need for humans to come together to share the closeness often brought about by ideas, thoughts or stories about individual lives.

Regardless, the warmth of human interaction has recently been in focus, whether through the words of Conductor Julie Sorenson when she greeted those at the Symphony; the words of Anita Valladolid as she described the warmth of conversation at the Senior Activity Center; or descriptions of the Youth Symphony program, a free concert earlier in April.

Now, due to the coming concert provided by the Snake River New Horizon Band, we have another opportunity to use friendship as a reason to go to this free program. The SRNHB is a member of the New Horizons Program supported by New Horizons International Music Association, started in 1991.

The program is the Band’s annual “Friends and Family” entertainment and is absolutely worth seeing and hearing. Members used such words as comforting, friendly, hardworking, dedicated and accomplished as they described the growth of their orchestra since 2011.

Over time it has become a group of over 48 older people who had played instruments in school or others who have become interested in trying a new accomplishment as they moved into retirement.

The similarity of the above groups and or individuals points out that human interaction is necessary, uplifting and rewarding. Why? Well, texting, writing and phone talking can certainly get a message across, but we all need human interaction through voices and their tones, words, expressions and enthusiasm.

What better opportunity to feel enjoyment than listening to music? This brings us to the background, growth and contemporary value of the Snake River New Horizon Band along with its relationship to happy interactions with others.

The band will present the program in Goranson Hall in the Idaho State University Fine Arts building on Thursday, May 16, from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The program is free, although they can always use a donation.

The music will be wonderful. I can attest to this, having been to one of their programs in the past. These people practice twice a week: their instruments have been donated, purchased, borrowed or kept from school days. To top things off, they have excellent conductors for practice and shows.

But what is a band? Simply, it does not have stringed instruments. But it does have clarinets, flutes, tubas, trombones, trumpets, percussion instruments and more. Their tunes range from classical to jazz but most important is their ability to play beautifully and with passion.

As one member of the group said: “We play our best and that is good enough.” I was later told this is the group motto. Members range from 20 to 80 or older and members definitely show enthusiasm, friendship and the happiness that comes from doing something they like to do and do very well.

If, as you read this, you think, “Wow, I would like to get involved,” then go to a practice session and see if you like it. (Practices are held twice a week on Tuesday and Thursday, one for beginners and the other for experienced musicians.) So, call 208-840-0033 for information.

And now, back to the beauty of music and the happiness of people who talk with one another; smiling, nodding, and feeling good because someone cares or at least is interested in finding out the beautiful stories others have to tell. So, should the conclusion of this be that music makes you happy?

Well, it helps along with a desire to get to know people, have friendly conversations and understand that learning about others encourages warmth, happiness and an understanding that as we all grow old, we have the opportunity to listen to an array of wonderfully rich stories told by friends.

So, on with the music, the friendship, caring about others and the enjoyment life will give you through beautiful music and interaction with others. Last, as a reward for interacting with others, celebrate by coming to the wonderful Snake River New Horizon Band Concert at Goranson Hall on May 16 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 pm.

Kay Merriam of Pocatello has a Ph.D. from the University of Connecticut. She was the president of the state League of Women Voters for two years and president of the Pocatello chapter for two years as well. She was the president of the Bannock County Planning and Zoning Committee for 11 years and on the Pocatello-Chubbuck District 25 School Board for six years.