Instrumental moments

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Members of Pendleton-based Directors' Jazz Orchestra perform Sunday, Aug. 30,(from left) Aaron Burkhart, Myron Taylor, Tony Kinnett, Jim Widmer, Matt Stout, Alec Kosla and Gary Wallyn. Scott Slade | The Times-Post

PENDLETON — The 2020 Lions Concerts in the Park series wrapped up Sunday in Falls Park with performances by Pendleton Heights High School Marching Arabians and Directors’ Jazz Orchestra (formerly Madison County Area Directors’ Band).

“It was a beautiful night to have a concert in the park,” said Lions Club member and organizer JoAnn Karaffa-Owens. “It was kind of special for the kids because so much has been canceled.”

The student musicians and directors’ orchestra were set up side by side and alternated performing several times. Both groups are led by Chris Taylor.

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With the Marching Arabians’ season starting late and competition schedule being canceled because of coronavirus, the band’s show was comprised of modified parts of shows from the past four years.

“They did really well,” Taylor said, reflecting how hard the students worked.

“We do that concert every year,” he said. “The kids really look forward to it, and the parents just love it.”

People who want to hear the band perform can do so during home football games or at a community concert planned for 6:30 p.m. Sept. 19 at the Pendleton Heights football stadium (in the auditorium in case of rain).

This is the first year the band has set up a community concert at the stadium, because normally they’d be busy with state competition.

“We did this just so we had a performing opportunity,” Taylor said.

The directors’ orchestra played a variety of instrumental jazz classics, as well as Frank Sinatra and Michael Bublé numbers featuring vocalists.

Directors’ Jazz Orchestra is based in Pendleton and is comprised of about 20 core musicians from throughout central Indiana.