November 6 – 9
Representatives from the twenty-seven member organizations that make up the Lesbian and Gay Band Association (LGBA) will be coming to Fort Lauderdale this week to celebrate their annual conference. The conference will begin on Thursday, November 6, and will go on through Sunday, November 9. South Florida last played host to the conference ten years ago. According to their website, the Lesbian and Gay Band Association’s mission is to “promote LGBT music, visibility, and pride by providing an international network of lesbian and gay bands in all stages of development; promoting music as a medium of communication among people; improving the quality of artistic and organizational aspects of member bands; [and] stimulating public interest in the unique art form of community bands in our culture.” The LGBA was founded in 1982; it was their hope to bring together people across the country (and later, the world) who were united in performing music for LGBT and non-LGBT audiences. Now, with two dozen member groups across the United States and additional groups in Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia, their original vision has been fully realized. There are two local organizations that belong to the LGBA: the Central Florida Sounds of Freedom Band and Color Guard (founded 2011) and the South Florida Pride Wind Ensemble (founded 1986). The latter group is credited with planning and organizing this year’s conference. A mass band, featuring 300 musicians who represent the various member organizations of the LGBA, will be performing the concert “Fiesta Caliente!” at the Au-Rene Theater at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts (201 SW 5th Ave., Fort Lauderdale) on Saturday, November 8 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $30 and can be purchased by going to browardcenter.org or by calling (954) 462-0222. For more information on the LGBA, visit lgba.org. For information on our local groups, visit centralfloridasoundsoffreedom.com and pridewindensemble.org.