Branden Hansen
Branden Hansen, a whiz on the xylophone, is a featured solo performer for the Corvallis Community Band’s concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 13, at LaSells Stewart Center. (Contributed photo)

CORVALLIS — The Corvallis Community Band stages its major concert of the year at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 13, at the LaSells Stewart Center on the Oregon State University campus.

It’s a group that Branden Hansen performed alongside several times while studying music at OSU. Now that he’s a music teacher at Roseburg High School, responsible for grooming musicians as opposed to simply being one, his role as a featured soloist in this weekend’s concert provides a welcome respite.

“I love teaching and making music with students, but I do certainly miss just being a member of the band,” said Hansen, who plays the xylophone and teaches six classes at Roseburg. “Not being the one waving the stick up front but actually making the sounds that are a part of the song, that’s definitely going to be a nice change of pace.”

The event’s theme is  “All-American Band Concert,” and Hansen’s solo piece is “The Golden Age of the Xylophone,” a medley of ragtime tunes from the early 1900s.

Making the guest appearance all the sweeter for Hansen is the concert’s other solo performer: OSU’s director of athletic bands, Brad Townsend. Hansen was for several years one of Townsend’s students and later became his graduate teaching assistant.

“This is the first opportunity we’ve had to be featured soloists in a concert together, so it’s kind of fun to have someone who is still one of my mentors be performing alongside me,” Hansen, 24, said.

Townsend, a vocalist, will perform “You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown” and will narrate “Casey at the Bat.”

Steve Matthes will serve as director of the show, which is free and open to the public.

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