Not many organizations hold the honor of being formed by an Act of Congress, but that’s exactly how “The President’s Own” got its start. The United States Marine Band will perform a concert at the RiverCenter for the Performing Arts on Sunday as part of its current national tour.
“‘The President’s Own’ United States Marine Band’s mission is to perform for the President of the United States and the Commandant of the Marine Corps,” said Marine Corps Master Sgt. Amanda Simmons, the band’s public affairs chief.
She said the band, founded in 1798 by an Act of Congress, is “America’s oldest continuously active professional musical organization.”
“The President’s Own” is made up of some of the most accomplished musicians in the country, and they perform over 500 times annually, making it a demanding military assignment.
Its current national tour celebrates the 125th anniversary of John Philips Sousa taking the band on tour in 1891. The repertoire for the concert pays homage to Sousa but also includes popular favorites by composers like John Williams, Wagner and Bernstein.
Sunday’s concert is a rare opportunity to see “The President’s Own” perform in Columbus. This is its first appearance in Columbus. According to its website, the ensemble’s travel schedule is booked a year in advance and is a matter of national security.
Norm Easterbrook, executive director of the RiverCenter, said he’s thrilled to be hosting “The President’s Own,” and some high profile guests as well.
“I just received word that Col. Tyler Zagurski, Commanding Officer, Marine Barracks Washington, and Sgt. Maj. Joseph Gray of the Marine Band will be coming in from Washington especially for this performance.”
This performance of “The President’s Own” is sponsored by RiverCenter, Inc. and is free to the public. Tickets are required and available at the box office.
If You Go:
What: “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band
When: 3 p.m. Sunday
Where: Bill Heard Theatre, RiverCenter for the Performing Arts
Cost: Free, but tickets are required. Box office hours are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, and one hour before the show.