Service members sing, dance at 33rd annual Joint Military Concert

Air Force Lt. Col. Cristina Moore Urrutia, commander, U.S. Air Force Band of the Pacific, conducts a joint military band during the concert.

Story and photos by Kristen Wong

Life & Leisure Editor Ho‘okele

A young woman sits alone at a desk, with a smile on her face, anticipating the day her husband returns home from war. She pens a short letter to her beloved. Far off in the midst of war, a man echoes the same sentiment in a letter home.

Members of various military bands perform during the concert.

Multiple military bands provided a musical backdrop to the theme, “Letters from Home,” during the 33rd annual Joint Military Concert at Hawaii Theatre Center, May 19.

This year, the U.S. Air Force Band of the Pacific and the Honolulu Navy League hosted the event, occurring alongside Military Appreciation Month and Armed Forces Day.

Members of the 25th Infantry Division Band, Hawaii Army National Guard Band, Marine Corps Forces Pacific Band, U.S. Pacific Fleet Band and Air Force Band of the Pacific intermingled to present a free show to the public.

Navy Musician 2nd Class Daniel Weber and Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Krysta Waters dance while performing “Blue Moon.”

“(The concert is a) unique opportunity for all the services on the island to come together and perform during a period of leadership transition and show force cohesion and how wonderful our armed services work together,” said Gregory D. Dunn, Hawaii Theatre Center president and CEO.

By leadership transition, Dunn was referring to the U.S. Pacific Fleet change of command that occurred May 17. He added that the concert also allows the general public to see a different side of the military.

“They get to see some of the most talented musicians that our United States armed services has to offer,” he said.

Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Christi Espinoza, Army Staff Sgt. Tierra Brown, Petty Offi cer 2nd Class Hayley Crnkovich, Air Force Staff Sgt. Courtney Clifford perform “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy.”

Dunn said attendance to the concert has doubled from last year. He credited the turnout to the theater’s new system that makes tickets available online.

Service members wove digital presentations via projector screen with live music and acting.

As Lt. Col. Moore Urrutia, the commander of U.S. Air Force Band of the Pacific, conducted a piece called “Mars,” from “The Planets,” a visual presentation featuring space complemented the music. Colors, numbers and pictures flew across the screen as the music played on.

Maj. Scott McKenzie conducted a variation of Leroy Anderson’s “The Typewriter,” using the noise of a text message notification from a smartphone instead of a typewriter.

Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Christi Espinoza and Air Force Staff Sgt. Nicholas Daniels sat upon the stage floor, mimicking sending each other text messages in tune with the song.

“I think it’s pretty important for us to take some time to reflect on the services,” said Capt. James Moore, public affairs officer, U.S. Pacific Air Forces. “What better occasion (to reflect than) to get together and enjoy the music (of) all the joint services coming together.”

Moore said that the services depend on each other and the concert itself is “a pretty good visual of how everything comes together.”

“This marks the 33rd Joint Military Band Appreciation Concert and the Honolulu Navy League continues to partner with the rotating lead band, and in 2018 this is the USAF Band of the Pacific,” said Jane Ferreira, executive director of the Honolulu Navy League.

“The playbill rouses patriotic senses and revives vivid memories of Memorial Day, parades and picnics with family and friends. All of this nestled in the comfort and elegance of the historic Hawaii Theatre. Mahalo to our active-duty armed forces members for their service; to our veterans – for your distinguished patriotism.”

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Category: Life & Leisure