COLBY — Denver's Queen City Jazz Band is the Western Plains Arts Association's final concert for the 51st season. The traditional jazz band was founded more than 60 years ago, and is recognized across the nation for playing outstanding traditional, Dixieland, gospel and spiritual music. The group has also toured widely across Europe.
A mid-March Colorado blizzard postponed the concert to a later date and an alternate Colby venue than originally scheduled. Colby Community College's Cultural Arts Center will be the concert location for the QCJB at 3 p.m., Sunday, May 2. Admission is by Western Plains Arts season ticket or adults $20, students $10 at the door. Per venue policy, social distancing and precautionary mask wearing will be required for this event, and a limited number of masks will be available upon entrance to the Cultural Arts Center's Frahm Theater.
In addition to businesses and individual donors across northwest Kansas, Queen City Jazz Band is made possible through special funding by the Dane Hansen Memorial Foundation, Lenora; the Greater Northwest Kansas Community Foundation, Bird City; and the Thomas County Community Foundation.
Bill Clark, tubist and band leader, joined the QCJB in 1976 and became the leader in 1985. A retired University of Colorado music professor, Clark set a goal while a 1960's high school student to one day play in the already popular band. Band members come from strong music performance and/or music eduction background and all have played with a number of local bands prior to joining QCJB. Instrumentalists include Kevin Bollinger, trumpet; John Bredenberg, clarinet and saxophone; Eric Staffelt, trombone; Hank Troy, piano; Rory Thomas, banjo; and Tony Pantelis, drums. Their gospel, blues and jazz vocalist Wende Harston has sang with the band since 1992.
The band has released numerous recordings over the years. Visit QueenCityJazzBand.com for further information about the musicians and music, pictures and video samples.