A Harmonie band was the populist entertainment of the 19th century; the masses heard popular tunes in bootlegged arrangements by Harmonie bands, collections of wind instruments.
Boston’s Grand Harmonie is putting together a brand-new opera, arranged for wind band and performed on period instruments. “On Behalf of a Madman” will feature Classical and Romantic arias in new arrangements. It will be a modern satire rich in political messaging, with musicians moving among the players on stage at the Arts at the Armory in Somerville.
Today, I supported the production on Kickstarter. I don’t think I can make the performances later this month, unfortunately, but I love the creative thinking behind it and I definitely support local theater.