2016 WASBE Regional Conference(Prague, Czech Republic)
The 2nd Regional WASBE Conference took place 8-11, July 2016 in the city of Prague, Czech Republic. Known as the “City of a Hundred Spires” Prague is in one of the most beautiful places in the world, and musicians have loved this city for centuries. Mozart’s opera “Don Giovanni”, was first performed in Prague and his Symphony No. 38 in D major, K. 504, was premiered in Prague in 1787 during Mozart's first visit to the city. Conference planners chose to focus on the extraordinary impact that Czech and other Eastern European composers have had on the international development of the modern wind band, such as Václav Nelhýbel, Julius Fučík, Jaromír Weinberger and many others. Perhaps the Czech composer who inspired a whole new era of wind band music is Pulitzer Prize winner Karel Husa. "Nothing was the same after the impact of his 'Music for Prague, 1968", said William Johnson, WASBE President. This work was performed by the Castle Guard Band during the conference. Performances took place in three of the world’s most famous concert halls, the Dvořák Hall of the Rudolfinum, the Spanish Hall of the Prague Castle and Smetana Hall of the Municipal House.
Past President Bert Aalders served as the Conference Chairman and Col. Václav Blahunek headed up the Steering Committee. The Prague Concert Company provided the necessary administrative support, John Tregellas, Director, and Jan Špalek, Sales Manager.