On Friday, Nov. 20 at 7:30 p.m., the University of Massachusetts Amherst department of music and dance will present the 46th Annual Multiband Pops concert in an entirely virtual format using recorded performances by their many ensembles. The concert will be presented online via YouTube Live, and is free and open to the public. Normally held in mid-October, the event is a major highlight of the UMass fall event calendar, and regularly draws a sell-out crowd from around New England and beyond.
In keeping with tradition, long-time Multibands producer Professor Jeffrey W. Holmes has recruited a cross-section of the department’s top ensembles, all of which have been rehearsing tirelessly in tented spaces around campus and online via Zoom and YouTube.
This year’s lineup is slated to include recorded performances by the UMass Jazz Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Vocal Jazz Ensemble, Chamber Choir, Wind Ensemble Chamber Winds, Trumpet Studio (featuring students past and present), Percussion Ensemble, Saxophone Quartet, Trombone Choir, and Chamber Jazz Quartet, plus a rendition of the UMass Fight Song by the Minuteman Marching Band. More ensembles are still being added - please check umass.edu/music for updates.
A key element of Multibands each year is outreach to local schools, with over 3,400 students brought to campus each October for matinee performances over a two-day period. This year, participating schools are being given special access to the virtual performance, allowing students to view the performance remotely, in an assembly or classroom setting, or a hybrid presentation.