Tuning in: Summer concerts return to CSC

By Emily Cutts  |  Correspondent.

CASTLETON — Winter is coming to Castleton State College’s Spartan Stadium Tuesday night.

The Boston Crusaders Drum and Bugle Corps will host a community night, debuting their musical program, “Conquest,” featuring music from the HBO television series “Game of Thrones.”

The June 9 event starts at 7:30 p.m. with an open rehearsal, where the group will introduce the audience to “a little of the rehearsal procedure,” said Jeff Pearson, operations manager for the Crusaders.

Around 8:30 p.m., there will be a full run-through of the program, ending with a non-marching, standstill performance of selected pieces.

This is the second year the Boston group has used CSC as a rehearsal space. A cold call put organizers from the corps in touch with the right people at the college, Pearson said.

“We consider it our second home, and look forward to a long-lasting relationship,” Pearson said. “We love being here and how well we’re treated, and we hope people enjoy having us here.”

While the musicians’ uniforms remain essentially the same from year to year, the group’s color guard will be wearing costumes that reflect the theme, Pearson said.

Celebrating its 75th year, the group will have special performances at Gillette Stadium, home of the New England Patriots, in Foxboro, Massachusetts, and at Tanglewood Center in Lenox, Massachusetts, the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra — with the orchestra.

The group is the third-oldest junior drum and bugle corps in the nation, and is a founding member of Drum Corps International. Young adults from across the world, ranging from 16 to 21, comprise the 150-member group.

“The Boston Crusaders are a wonderful addition to our summer concert series,” said Lori Phillips, director of conferences and events at CSC. “They’re just a wonderful bunch of young people that are doing great things with music.”

A week later, the 20th annual summer concert series kicks off at the Castleton Pavilion. The opening concert will feature the Party Crashers, a cover band whose repertoire reaches from Aretha Franklin to Aerosmith. The weekly concert series features a different band each Tuesday through August 11.

Old musical favorites Satin & Steel, and new faces such as Jamie Lee Thurston are scheduled to perform during the nine-week run.

While the college facilitates the summer concert series, funding for the event comes from community donors. “It’s 100 percent a community event,” Phillips said. “It’s not sponsored by the college and donations are gladly accepted.”

Each year an average of $13,000 to $15,000 is raised to cover expenses, Phillips said. “This year we are doing something different: at each concert, we will be accepting nonperishable donations to give to local food shelves,” Phillips said. “There’s a real need in the summer, and people seem to forget about that.”