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Northwinds takes Sousa on the road
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The Northwinds Symphonic Band is hitting the road with its "Stars, Strips and Sousa" concert.

According to conductor Ron Evans, the show is a fan favorite.

"We've been doing (John Phillip) Sousa shows off and on since 1988. The last one we did was in 2005," said Evans, who formed the group in 1984.

"It's one of our most popular concerts. People are always asking when we're going to do it again."

Sousa (1854-1932) was an American conductor and composer in the early 20th century. He is famous for patriotic pieces such as "El Capitan," "Moonlight on the Potomac Waltzes" and "The Stars and Stripes Forever."

"We're doing a re-enactment concert," Evans said. "We are trying to play the concert exactly as Sousa would've played it 100 years ago. There will be period costumes and guest soloists."

The weekend tour kicks off today with a 7:30 p.m. performance at Brenau University's Hosch Theatre, 429 Academy St., Gainesville.

The performance is free, but due to limited seating, advance tickets were required for admission. Although all of the tickets have been doled out, Evans says that if any are unclaimed at 7:05 p.m., they will be released to the public.

In addition to the usual cast of band members, the Sousa tour will also feature guest soloists Brandon Craswell, who has performed with the New York Philharmonic, and local talents Michelle Martin and Russell Andrade.

Northwinds' statewide tour will include stops in Warner Robins, Cairo and Milledgeville.