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TREASURES: SCULPTURE SALUTES CITY'S FOREMOST MUSIC MAKERS

September 22, 1999 — Source: Naperville Sun, The (IL) — Author: Kathy Millen

What: The "Naperville's Own" bas-relief sculpture, part of the Century Walk art exhibit in downtown Naperville.

Subject: The Naperville Municipal Band.

Artist: S. Michael Re of Roselle.

Location: The west side of the Firstar Bank building on the corner of Washington Street and Jefferson Avenue.

When dedicated: 1996.

Materials: The sculpture is made of gypsum polymer mixed with bronze powder.

Size: 7 feet high and 17 feet wide.

Description: Incorporating both the past and present, the artwork features six band members, five men and one woman, marching from the original bandstand used early in the century toward the Central Park Bandshell, where the musicians perform today.

The central figure is a sousaphone player, a tribute to the music of John Phillip Sousa, a longtime favorite of municipal band performers.

Background: The Naperville Municipal Band has been an important part of Naperville for more than a century.

Early town records note performances by what was then called the Naperville Brass Band. One of those performances was held at an 1866 Republican meeting at Central Park. In 1916, the band was known as the Naperville Band, a 22-member ensemble that performed concerts every Saturday night during the summer.

The band also marched in parades and played for picnics at Burlington Park.

Significance: Brand Bobosky, president of the Century Walk, said that the Municipal Band is an institution in Naperville.

"It's kind of like motherhood and apple pie," he said.

"How could you go wrong?  It transcended last century and this century and fits in with our mission, which is to portray significant people, places and events of the last century."

"Naperville's Own," a sculpture of the Municipal Band, hangs on the west side of the Firstar Bank. The bronze bas-relief piece is part of the Century Walk art exhibit located throughout downtown Naperville.
 

 

Section: NEWS — Page: 43

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