James Madison University School of Music

New Horizons Band

The Harrisonburg New Horizons Band is open to anyone with an interest in learning a band instrument and playing in an ensemble with others. Unlike typical community bands, membership is open to people of all experience levels, including those who have never before played an instrument or read music. Dr. Willliam Dabback, assistant professor of music at JMU, directs the band, which meets every Thursday afternoon from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. at in the JMU Music Building. Rehearsals consist of small group instruction to help players develop their skills and ensemble practice to learn band pieces. The New Horizons Band provides an opportunity for all people to make music with others in a non-intimidating atmosphere. Players choose their instruments and progress at their own rates. Current members state, “It’s fun, good fellowship, and the best bargain in town for band instruction.”

The New Horizons program started in Rochester, New York through the Eastman School of Music in 1991. Since then, over 130 communities in the United States and Canada have developed programs. Harrisonburg members have access to camps and other benefits as part of the larger New Horizons International Music Association http://www.newhorizonsmusic.org

Anyone interested in joining the Harrisonburg New Horizons Band should contact either Will Dabback (dabbacwm@jmu.edu / (540) 568-3464) or Nancy Owens, the director of the JMU Lifelong Learning Institute (owensne@jmu.edu / (540) 568-2333) for details.