The nationwide New Horizon’s programs began in 1991 under the direction of Dr Roy Ernst of the Eastman School of Music. Dr Ernst felt that many adults, as they approached retirement would be interested in making music in a group setting, but might not have the skills or confidence to get started.
In 1998, recently retired Healdsburg High School Band Director, Lew Sbrana, learned of the New Horizons organization and began investigating how to begin a band. In January 1999 the New Horizons Band of Sonoma County was formed with twelve brave and enthusiastic members. Now after more than 20 years of making music, the Band proudly claims over 80 members. In addition to the Concert Band there is also the NHB Swing Band and several small ensembles have sprung up from the Band’s membership.
NHB of Sonoma County Concert Band performs 5 – 8 concerts per year in various venues around Sonoma County. The Swing Band plays several times a year for smaller groups and parties. All performances are FREE to the public, although donations are gratefully appreciated.
New Horizons Music programs provide entry points to music making for adults, including those with no musical experience at all and those who were active in school music programs but have been inactive for a long period. A New Horizons Music program is inclusive rather than exclusive. There are no auditions. Every person has musical potential that can be developed to a level that will be personally rewarding.
The Band rehearses on Tuesday and Thursday mornings from 9:30 to 11:30 at the Odd Fellows Hall, 545 Pacific Ave, Santa Rosa. Rehearsals are normally held September through May, with a hiatus during the summer.
If you’d like to learn more about the Band, please feel free to stop in to a rehearsal or come to a concert. Please direct any questions to Music Director Mike Milbrath- firstname.lastname@example.org.