At the Hollywood Bowl this weekend, the USC Trojan Marching Band will perform the brassy climax of the “1812 Overture” under the direction of Gustavo Dudamel, one of the top orchestral conductors of the world. The Los Angeles Philharmonic will be there as well, along with the fireworks and cannon fire that always punctuate the finale of the annual Tchaikovsky Spectacular.
The Trojan Marching Band has played the Hollywood Bowl annually since 1983 and regularly for the Tchaikovsky Spectacular for more than 20 years. Last summer, the band also performed for the opening night induction of The Go-Go’s into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame and Dreamworks Animation’s 20th Anniversary concert.
It’s like going back to school for me.
“We’ve been playing the Hollywood Bowl for more than 30 years,” said Arthur Bartner, the band’s director. “This is the first time in all these years that we’ve had the maestro himself, Gustavo Dudamel, conduct the Tchaikovsky Spectacular. I’m a kid again. It’s like going back to school for me. He’s one of my favorite conductors, and I’m just going to learn as much as I can from him.”
This summer has already been busy for the band, particularly earlier this month, when portions of the group performed for Fourth of July celebrations on two continents. At home, the band was the featured entertainment for the 26th consecutive year on Catalina for the island’s annual Independence Day festivities.
Meanwhile across the world, a 30-piece contingent performed at Expo 2015 in Italy on July 4, which was designated USA National Day. The band played the national anthems of Italy and the United States at a ceremony attended by Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and the U.S. Ambassador to Italy John Phillips. The Trojans then led a parade across the fairgrounds, ending at the U.S. Pavilion.
Tickets are available for both nights of the Tchaikovsky Spectacular, tonight and Saturday.