Ben Harstad, Joe Harstad, William Karels, Drake Rogers, and Brandon Hansen played at Northern State University’s 31st Annual Merry TubaChristmas on December 10. Following rehearsal, the mass choir of 35 tuba and euphonium players performed at Aberdeen’s Lakewood Mall, Walmart, and Shopko. Susan Karels, Milbank’s 6-12 grade band director, chaperoned the group.
TubaChristmas was conceived in 1974 as a tribute to the late William J. Bell, who was born Christmas Day, 1902. “This annual holiday celebration is a chance to express respect and gratitude for the contributions of many great performers, teachers, and composers and to dazzle audiences with ‘heavy metal’ sounds they don’t often hear,” Karels explained. TubaChristmas performances have been important in gaining recognition and respect for the tuba and euphonium and in building public awareness for their musical potential.
Milbank TubaChristmas musicians are: William Karels (MMS tuba), Drake Rogers (MMS tuba), Brandon Hansen (MHS tuba) and David Stengel (MHS alumni euphonium). Front row: Ben Harstad (MHS euphonium), Joe Harstad (MHS euphonium).