Craig Gall, musical director of the Kenosha Pops Concert Band, is predicting “the largest crowd ever at a Pops Band concert” will gather at the band shell in Pennoyer Park Sunday afternoon (July 1).
The reason for all the excitement is the band’s guest vocalist, Miss America Laura Kaeppeler, a Kenosha native and Carthage College graduate.
“We’re honored that the city asked us to accompany Miss Kaeppeler on the happy occasion of welcoming her back to her hometown,” Gall said.
For the homecoming concert, Gall sent Kaeppeler a list of possible tunes from the Pops Band’s extensive library.
“We wanted a mix of styles,” Gall said, adding that the vocal tunes “go from a patriotic piece to Broadway hits.”
Sunday afternoon, Kaeppeler will sing:
– “What I Did For Love,” written by Marvin Hamlisch for the musical “A Chorus Line”
– “But Not For Me,” by George and Ira Gershwin, from the 1930 musical “Girl Crazy”
– “Someone to Watch Over Me,” another Gershwin piece, this one from the 1926 musical “Oh, Kay!”
– “All the Things You Are,” by Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein from the musical 1939 musical “Very Warm for May”
– “I Dreamed a Dream,” from the musical “Les Miserables”
– Irving Berlin’s patriotic standard “God Bless America”
Other pieces on the program include the “Atlantic City Pageant March,” written in 1927 by John Philip Sousa. This is a rather obscure piece by “the march king,” Gall said. During Sousa’s final years, the band often played summer engagements at Atlantic City’s Steel Pier. The march was written at the request of the city’s mayor, to honor the famous Atlantic City beauty pageant.
The Pops Band is also performing the Earth, Wind and Fire hit “September” and “Come Fly with Me,” which was written for Frank Sinatra and is the title track of his 1958 album of the same name.
“Like all of our Pops concerts,” Gall said, “we like to showcase a mix of music for all ages in our audience.”