Valley City High School Band Invited to Open for El Zagal Shrine Circus

TR Staff
Staff Writer

Special to Times-Record
Valley City High School’s Concert Band has been invited and has accepted the invitation to perform opening music for the EL Zagal Shrine Circus in Jamestown. The circus and band performance will be on Tuesday, April 9th, 2019, beginning at 4:30 p.m. The concert and circus will be held at the Jamestown Civic Center in downtown Jamestown, ND, and it will include the VCHS band playing pre-circus music at 4:30 p.m., with the full three ring Shrine circus to follow starting at 5:30 p.m. Doors to the Civic Center will open at 4:00 on the afternoon of Tuesday, April 9th.
The band was excited when Mr. Kjelland told them “I am going to take you all to the circus!” After the initial shock wore off, he also told them “but there is a catch…..we will have to play for an hour before the circus!” The band students were excited to hear they had been invited to play.
The invitation was a result of Shriner Gilbert Kuipers (VCSU) and Shriners Brian and Cole Mindt (Iron Stallion) realizing that there would not be a band before the circus in Jamestown. Shriner protocol prefers a band playing circus marches as an introduction to the actual performance. Fargo has 6 Shrine Circus performances and the Shriner band plays before each and every one of the circus performances. Since a band was not going to play in Jamestown, Kuipers and the Mindt’s asked Mr. Kjelland if the VCHS band would be interested in playing. Although not a Shriner band, the thought was that a band was still needed. Mr. Kjelland visited with his band officers (Eliza Johnson – President, Jessie Undem – Vice President, and Allysen Mathias – Secretary) about the opportunity. The band officers thought it would be a great gig for the band, so the invitation was accepted.
The Hi-Liner band wears many “hats” including pep band, concert band, marching band and jazz band, and now they can add circus band to the hat rack. Circus music differs in style from other instrumental venues. The band has been practicing the circus marches, written and arranged by circus bandmaster Karl King, John Phillip Sousa and Henry Fillmore. The marches were written in the early 1900s specifically for circus performances, including Barnum and Bailey’s and Ringling Brothers.
The Shrine Circus raises money for the sole purpose of donating all profits to the three Shriner hospitals that provide medical services for children with medical problems who cannot afford treatment elsewhere. The Shrine Band motto is “We play so kids can walk.” Valley City High School Band is proud to be part of this mission.
We would like to invite you to the El Zagal Shrine Circus at the Civic Center in Jamestown, ND, next Tuesday, April 9th, to see and hear the VCHS Circus Band perform and see the Shrine Circus. Doors open at 4:00 p.m.