Facts and misconceptions about Sousa's Concerts
Sousa was the father of the modern pops concert. His programming and showmanship greatly influenced Arthur Fiedler.
Sousa's own concerts were rarely all-Sousa. Instead they were a mixture of light classics, novelties, and brilliant instrumental and vocal solos, with the Sousa marches played as rapid-fire encores.
Sousa concerts were never all-marches.
Sousa's Band marched only eight times in their forty year existence.
Sousa's own performing instrument was the violin.
Sousa introduced the music of Wagner, Richard Strauss, Resphigi and others to many American cities. The Sousa Band began touring America in 1892 before many American cities had their own symphony orchestra
Sousa's flexible and popular programming format allowed him to play annually or bi-annually in most of America's major cities. Complete performance dates and sites for these concerts are available on request.
Sousa's Band rehearsed on the stage of Carnegie Hall, and included many great orchestral musicians from both Europe and America.
Sousa's Band rarely played out of doors. They performed mostly in concert halls and opera houses.
Sousa was the first American to compose a successful Broadway show- El Capitan (1896).
Sousa concerts have never been seasonal. They are as effective in December and January as in any other month.
Sousa created "secret arrangements" of his marches for his own performances. These arrangements, which are rarely heard today have been restored by Keith Brion and are featured throughout his Sousa at the Symphony programs.