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The Southwest Arts Center Blown Away by MACB

There could not have been a better place to be on Sunday afternoon, May 5, 2024 than the Southwest Arts Center on New Hope Road in SW Atlanta. The Metropolitan Atlanta Community Band, under the direction of Mr. Vanable H. Moody, Sr., and Mr. Allen Ward, Jr., presented its Spring Concert starting at 4:00 P.M., and let me tell you…This was one concert not to be missed. The Metropolitan Atlanta Community Band was founded in 1996 by the late Dr. Alfred D. Wyatt, Sr. and other prominent Atlanta area musicians. The organization comprises people who have been or are still active in music. The band consists of current music teachers, former band students, music majors, retired individuals, and countless other entities with a common interest in music. Many of the members are currently employed in various fields, some of which have little or nothing to do with music. Still, they all share a common bond in that they are members of the Metropolitan Atlanta Community Band (MACB), better known as “Mac B.”

The concert started on time, and from beginning to end, there was not a dull moment. Each selection was preceded by a short story to explain the history of the composition. This was more than just a performance; the Metropolitan Atlanta Community Band was actually “teaching” the audience something that many of them did not know. There was fanfare, marches, special selections, and even a vocalist (band member) who treated the adoring crowd to a beautiful arrangement of “Over The Rainbow.” After vocalist Henry Porter told the audience a short story about the “rainbow” and sang his rendition of the song, it became apparent that everyone in the place was ready to go to the Land of Oz. The band’s performance of the familiar “Overcome” (We Shall Overcome) left tears in the eyes of some in attendance. MACB left no stone unturned and offered everyone a variety of music. At one point during the show, director Allen Ward, Jr. approached the mike and told everyone in attendance to “loosen up, clap your hands, stand up, move around, and enjoy yourselves”! When they launched into a mix of Michael Jackson’s music, there was a certain part in the song “I’m Bad” where, at the very end, director Ward quickly turned to the audience, and together they exclaimed, “Who’s Bad!” This concert provided excellent audience participation, and the Metropolitan Atlanta Community Band gave one heck of a performance. Job well done, directors Moody and Ward!

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