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NEW GLASGOW – When the Royal Canadian Navy’s band performs at Glasgow Square next weekend, there will be several familiar faces on stage.
New Glasgow native, Leading Seaman Natalie Alcorn, is one of the Stadacona Band’s French horn players and vocalists. Her niece and sisters will join her for several of the band’s vocal sets.
For Alcorn, music is hardwired in her genes. Her parents, Andrew and Janice, are music teachers at NNEC and encouraged her to be musical at a young age. “I started in junior choir at age three, piano at five and trumpet at seven. I picked up French horn at age 14, but continued to play trumpet in jazz band.”
She considered studying sciences after high school but was convinced by her parents to pursue music. It was at McGill University she started playing with the Ceremonial Guard in Ottawa and her taste for military life. “I don’t mind the military,” she said. “It’s a great way to stay fit.”
Alcorn said she even got top grades for marksmanship with the C7 semi-automatic rifle during basic training.
Since she doesn’t get home too often, she’s happy to have a chance to perform in her hometown. “One of our PR people said I might know some people since we’d be performing in New Glasgow. I told her I’d probably know all the people.”
The Stadacona Band’s repertoire isn’t limited to military marches. They often play arrangements of Top 40 hits and modern pieces. Alcorn has even sung Adele’s ‘Skyfall’ from the latest James Bond film of the same name. “There are a lot of jazz freelance musicians in the band so that often works its way into our sets,” said Alcorn.
Her niece will be singing a Shirley Temple medley arranged specially for her by the band while Alcorn and her sisters Robyn and Jodie will be singing some boogie-woogie and swing tunes in the Andrew Sisters style.
All proceeds from the concert will go to the Friends of the Pioneer Cemetery, who are working to stabilize and restore the 18th century cemetery. At least 12 passengers who travelled on the Ship Hector from Scotland in 1773 are buried in the cemetery. The band will perform at Glasgow Square on May 11 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door.
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