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Who are We?
We are the No Strings Attached Community Band (NSACB) of Sudbury, Ontario, Canada.
The NSACB, usually conducted by Sandra McMillan, is a non-profit community band composed entirely of volunteer musicians. Our band is the only community concert band serving the entire Sudbury Ontario area (view map of Sudbury). Our practices are held on Thursday evenings at Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School on Loach's Rd. (see directions).
The No Strings band offers the opportunity for local amateur wind musicians in Sudbury of all ages, "from high school students to retirees," to perform in a full concert band ensemble. We offer a unique performance perspective to the Sudbury arts community, due to our novel repertoire and mandate. [pic below was taken at our Dec. '08 Christmas concert at Cambrian]
The NSACB is also a non-profit community organization which is sanctioned and supported by the City of Greater Sudbury (through an annual cultural grant) and the non-profit Sudbury Arts Council, as well as through past grants with the Ontario Trillium Foundation and the Sudbury Community Foundation. In 2013, we became members of The Canadian Band Association (CBA).
Part of the band's mission is to promote concert band music locally as well as to educate the public about wind instruments. Our band performs free-of-charge (or sometimes via donations at the door) at locations throughout Sudbury, from September to mid-June. Our venues each season can include schools, libraries, parks, seniors' residences, etc. Our repertoire includes a diverse selection...ranging from Gustav Holst to a Disney medley, and just about everything in between!
In the past, our band has frequently supported and partnered with various community groups to promote worthy local causes. Such local nonprofits which we have supported in the past, would include: the Elgin St. Mission; the Rockhaven Recovery Home for Men; Sudbury Food Bank; Northern Ontario Families of Children with Cancer; the Samaritan Centre; Genevra House; Easter Seals; the Military Families Fund; the Sudbury Action Centre for Youth, etc.
The No Strings Attached band gives local brass, woodwind and percussion players the opportunity to get together and make music in a fun and accepting atmosphere. Our group attempts to improve the skill levels of its less-experienced players through an active program of mentorship. Our members range in age from about 15 to 70.
Some of our players had never played their instruments for decades before joining our band, whereas others may perform regularly in their high school bands. Some of our high school students joined us because they were looking for a musical environment that was more challenging than that provided by their own high school ensembles.
Other members joined us because they wanted to remain active in music but couldn't find a band to play in after high school. This would include, for example, some college and university students as well as members from the general public who simply enjoy playing music. We like to think that our membership is just as diverse as the people who make up our community!
Previous attempts over the years to establish a permanent civic band in Sudbury have met with mixed results (one notable success story during the post-war period was the "Sudbury Legion and Citizens Band," which flourished in the 1950's).
A surprisingly large number of municipal bands over the years have managed to represent the various towns surrounding Sudbury, including Coniston, Copper Cliff, etc. (Note: the early undated photo at the right depicts the "Copper Cliff Town Band").
Our band originally got its start as a Laurentian University- Huntington College thesis project on the part of our conductor in the Fall of 2000. The first rehearsal was held on September 27th, 2000 at Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School, although rehearsals did not begin in earnest until the next semester. Our first concert took place on January 29th, 2001 at Huntington College.
In some of our earlier seasons, our rehearsals were held at the Jarrett Centre or at Churchill Public School. However, since the Fall of 2004, we have been situated more-or-less permanently at Lo-Ellen.
In 2003, the band became a federally-registered non-profit charitable organization (Reg. No. 88643 4802 RR0001). In June of that same year this website was launched. The band also currently has a page on the social networking site Facebook.
In 2004, the NSACB received a generous grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation to help purchase percussion equipment. Also in 2004, the NSACB awarded its first bursary to a deserving local music student.
In 2005, 2010, and 2014 our band participated in the annual Northern Ontario Music Festival (NOMFest). In 2008, the band received grants from the City of Greater Sudbury and the local chapter of the IODE to assist in its purchase of a new trailer.
In it's early years, the NSACB typically numbered as few as 12-15 members. Currently however, there around 28-30 musicians in the group. The band's conductor and musical director since its inception has usually been Sandra McMillan. During Sandra's occasional absences, though, her role has usually been filled in by various "guest" conductors; including Matt Beatty, Dave Wilks, Erin Morel, Jack Broumpton, David Young, Linda Berger and Marc Taillefer, among others.
During the upcoming 2013/14 season, Sandra will be taking a Sabbatical from her normal conducting duties, and her role as Musical Director of No Strings will be capably handled by music educator and percussionist, David Young.
If you are interested in joining our band, or if you wish to book the band for an upcoming gig, or if you simply wish to find out more about the group, please contact our Interim Conductor for the 2013/14 season, David Young at: (705) 626-2601 or at: email@example.com (members who wish to contact Dave in order to provide suggestions for improving our band or its repertoire are invited to reach him by e-mail).
If you wish to make a tax-deductible financial donation to the band, you may contact our Treasurer, Linda Berger, at (705) 523-1024. You may also contact the Webmaster to submit any digital pictures or to offer suggestions about this website at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Pictures, videos, and comments may also be submitted to the band's Facebook page.
The NSACB actively supports other organizations, which in turn support local musicians. This would include, for example, the 5-Penny New Music Concerts website, which showcases up-and-coming local performers & composers.
We also encourage the public to view the webpage for the Jubilee Folk Ensemble, a Sudbury-based non-profit string ensemble that embraces multicultural folk music. You may visit our Links page to access other local musically-related organizations online.
Of course, many of our members down through the years have also played with other local bands or ensembles in addition to playing with us. Also, in the past, some of our concerts have been so-called "combination concerts," in which we've teamed up with other local groups, including high school bands such as Lo-Ellen and Lockerby to hold a joint concert.
Periodically, various smaller ensembles have also spontaneously emerged from within the band's membership, with the band's full blessing. Recently, for example, four of our veteran woodwind players have formed a quartet, dubbed the "Boreal Wind Quartet," which occasionally performs with No Strings as well as holds its own concerts.
The No Strings Attached Community Band of Sudbury is generously supported by an annual civic arts & culture grant from the City of Greater Sudbury (Tourism, Culture & Marketing Sect.), a past community grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, as well as through a membership in the Sudbury Arts Council. Additional capital funding has been provided by the local chapter of the IODE, the City of Greater Sudbury's (Ward 10) "Healthy Community Initiative Funds" budget, and the Sudbury Community Foundation.
If you have any comments or questions about this site, including suggestions for improvement, please contact G. Schaut at email@example.com.
This site was created by G. Schaut using MS FrontPage. The site was launched on June 17, 2003. The contents of this site are the property of the No Strings Attached Community Band of Sudbury and are intended solely for non-commercial use.
We encourage webmasters to include a link to us in their sites. Please report any broken links to our Webmaster. All external links open up into new windows (Note: the NSACB is not responsible for the content of these external sites). Anyone may submit digital pictures of our band to the Webmaster.
Excellent low-cost web hosting for this site is provided by 1sthostweb.com.
[Site last updated: Feb. 28/14]
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