Animal and mechanical sounds

mesh in melody for April Fools fun If you go

Some of us spend days planning elaborate April

Fools' Day pranks, inflating our whoopee cushions, charging our joy buzzers and winding

our chattering teeth. Others spend the day on

edge, wary of every potential practical joke and pit fall, hoping to avoid being a victim of the day for frivolity and mirth.

Ben Messinger, on the other hand, just wants people

to have a good time and a couple laughs while enjoying some great music.

Messinger is the founder of The Littlestown Area Municipal Band, and for the last 26 years, he has been putting on shows all around the area

The band has been bringing music to parades, festivals and concerts that are generally free to the public.

Sunday, the band is hosting an April Fools' Day Concert, starting at 3 p.m, at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 53 W. King St, Littlestown.

. It's going to be a little different than most concert band music you'll here, Messinger said Instead of your usual A minors and treble clefs, the musicians will be using their instruments in arrangements

imitating the sounds of machines, animals

and circus acts.

"We wanted to do something funny. Something

people could laugh at," Messinger said The band has about 90 active members from all around the area, and about 50 of them will be performing

at Sunday's concert, bringing a full arrangement of woodwinds, brass and percussion to the funniest concert around.

Their selections include "Grande Serenade for an

Awful Lot of Winds and Percussion," "Carnival of the Animals," ''The Waltzing Cat"

and more.

Sunday is also Sergei Rachmaninoff's birthday, so

the band will be slipping in some selections of his work

Messinger said the first part of the concert will imitate mechanical sounds with selections such as ''The Typewriter" and "Wind Turbines."

The second part focuses mainly on animal sounds,

with ~ach movement creating an audio illusion, with meowing cats and the sounds of elephants,

swans and aquatic life flowing from the band.

"It's a fun, April Fools' thing," Messinger said.

"People don't expect instruments to make these sounds.

The band started as a community band, open to

anyone, in 1986. Messinger founded the band to be in a grown, serving as a musical outlet for many area musicians, and entertaining many more. Members range in age - they have a sixth-grader,

and they have a member who is nearing 90.

They get together for several concerts per year, and

have fun playing music together.

And Sunday, that fun is going to include a lot of


The show is free and open to the public, but the band does take donations.

Steve Marroni,

FlipSide staff