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  • Congaree New Horizons Band

Congaree New Horizons Band Program

Do you wish you had learned to play an instrument as a youngster? Or maybe you wish you had practiced more? Maybe you want to relive the fun you had during your school band days? It is never too late to learn! If you are 50 or older, you can learn to play in an instrumental music group at the School of Music. In fact, if you are younger than 50, we still want you to have music making be a part of your life. Come make music with us! It’s never too late and your best is good enough! 

Download Fall 2023 Rehearsal Schedule**

Download Fall 23 CNHB Membership Information**



WIS Interview with Dawndy Mercer Plank


Concert Bands: 5:30 – 6:45 p.m. (Meets at USC String Project; 851 Park Street) -  Based on the skill levels of our members and their interests, we may have TWO concert bands and a beginning band class during Fall 23.

Concert Bands Director - Mandi Schlegel
Assisted by Music Education GAs Andrew Connolly and Brady Moffett 
Beginning Band class instructor - Ray Dunovant

Crescent Moon Jazz Band: 7 – 8 p.m.  (Meets at USC String Project; 851 Park Street ) - Based on the skill levels of our members and their interests, we may have a beginning jazz band in addition to Crescent Moon.  We encourage wind players of all skill levels to participate. ALL INSTRUMENTS ARE WELCOME IN JAZZ BAND!  

Crescent Moon Band Director - Lauen Meccia
Beginning Jazz Band instructor - Ray Dunovant

Virtual participation through Zoom is available for Monday night offerings.

 Jam Band - 6:15–7:30 p.m. -  School of Music, Room 107 - For all levels of playing and all instruments. We can provide access to  guitar (electric and acoustic), bass (electric), drum set,  electric keyboards, ukulele, and any other rhythm percussion instruments instruments.

In Jam Band, we perform music genres that are not represented by the current CNH offerings. Members choose the songs/pieces to be performed and learn to play a variety of instruments, primarily in the rhythm section. Wind players are highly encouraged to join. In Jam Band, we emphasize playing by ear, instrumentation flexibility, rotation of instruments, and improvisation. Interested members should contact Mandi Schlegel 

Complete this form related to your musical interests and ambitions for jam band.  This form contains links to videos that explain more about Jam Band. 

Jam Band "leader" - Mandi Schlegel

Clarinet Ensemble: 5:30­ – 6:30 p.m. (Meets in School of Music room 022)  - Director,  Ray Dunovant

Dixieland Codgers: 6:30 – 8 p.m. (Meets in School of Music room 022) - Coordinator, Evan Reed

Junior Varsity Combo: 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. (Meets in School of Music room 022)
Varsity Combo: 7:40 – 8:40 p.m. (Meets in School of Music room 022)

Combo director, John Valerio

ARMED SERVICES VETERANS BAND (ASVB) - 9:30 – 11:45 a.m. (Meets at USC String Project, 851 Park Street)

Formed in Fall 2023, the group is for current and former military personnel (veterans). Through the band, we seek to validate members' identities and increase their sense of belonging as they engage in a music ensemble full of others sharing similar lived experiences.

Veterans of ANY age and ANY experience level are welcome to join ASVB. 

We encourage veterans who have never played a wind or percussion instrument to join ASVB. All instruments, musical supplies, and instruction are FREE to veterans. 

Veterans playing in ASVB can participate in any other CNHB ensemble at no charge! 

Director: Chief Warrant Officer Four William (B.J.) Brazier, Retired US Army Bands Commander and Conductor

Assistant: Specialist James Subosits

Register and Pay Fees for Fall 23 CNH Experiences

Donate to Congaree New Horizons Band Program

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Membership Information

Members of the Congaree New Horizons Band program come from all walks of life, and no prior musical experience is required to participate. Learn to play and perform a wind or percussion instrument in a group setting and have a lot of fun doing it. Each practice session includes full group rehearsals and small group and individual instruction.

The Congaree New Horizons Band program has grown by leaps and bounds and now includes three concert bands – beginner, intermediate and advanced, two jazz big bands – beginner and advanced, two jazz combos – junior varsity combo and varsity combo, a flute choir, a Dixieland ensemble, recorder ensembles, jam band, and a private lessons program. Future plans including adding intergenerational ensembles with area middle and high school students, percussion ensembles,  Mariachi/world music ensembles, a glee club, and more.

The Congaree New Horizons Band program is grateful for the vision of Dr. Roy Ernst, the founder of New Horizons Music and professor emeritus from the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester.  Learn more about Roy, the history of New Horizons, and musicianship programs and camps at the Roy Ernst Music Institute (REMI).


Performance Archive

Click these links to see our previous concerts:

Summer 23 Concert - Musical Sounds of Summer - August 15th, 2023
Spring 23 Concert #2 - "Make a Joyful Noise" - May 4th, 2023
Spring 23 Concert #1 - "It's Never Too Late" - May 2nd, 2023
Fall 22 Concert Performance (December 12, 2022)
Summer 22 Concert Performance (August 11th, 2022)
Spring 22 Concert Performance (May 4, 2022)
December 21 Concert Performance (December 12, 2021)
Fall 21 Concert Performance (September 27, 2021) 
Spring 21 Concert Informance (May 4, 2021)
Fall 20 Concert Informance (December 8, 2020)
Fall 19 CNHB Night of Jazz (December 12, 2019)
Fall 19 Concert Bands and Chamber Ensembles (December 10, 2019)

Upcoming Events

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Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.