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    Thursday, August 22, 2019-3:50:39A.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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Saipan, Japan bands to hold concert in August

THE Saipan Pacific Winds Concert Band will hold a friendship concert with the Gamagori Junior Band of Japan at the Hyatt Regency Ballroom on Aug. 25.

Saipan band director Atsuko Eck said Gamagori has had friendships band exchanges with Guam since 2013.

In 2014, 2016 and 2018, Eck helped facilitate the visit to Gamagori city of the Guam Territorial Band or GTB members.

Eck also helped arrange the visit of the Gamagori Junior Band members — fourth to ninth grade students — to Guam in 2015 and 2017.

“The Gamagori Junior Band was supposed to visit Guam again this summer but the GTB was busy preparing for the Australian trip. We suggested that they visit Saipan instead. We are very honored to welcome them on Saipan,” Eck said.

The friendship concert on Saipan, titled “Hands Across the Sea 2019,” will also feature musicians from the island’s private and public schools. Eck said she has asked students of Marianas High School, Mount Carmel School and Saipan Community School to participate in the concert

In preparation for the event, two teachers from Gamagori — Kanehisa Suzuki and Yusuke Okamoto — visited Saipan over the weekend to check the venue.

The Gamagori Junior Band was formed in 1995 to “improve the level of musicianship of youth members and provide cultural exchange opportunities through music.”

Since it was established, the band has performed in China, South Korea, Guam, Australia and Poland, and will participate in the 44th National Brasswind competition in Busan, South Korea before heading to Saipan.