Naval Reserve Band performs at Washington Defense Attaché Ball

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Navy News / January 21, 2016

By Lieutenant (Navy) Michael Di Berardo

Twenty-four Naval Reserve (NAVRES) musicians provided the musical entertainment at the 2015 Washington Defense Attaché Ball in Washington, D.C., on November 6, 2015.

This year’s gala was held at the Japanese Ambassador’s residence and was hosted by Rear-Admiral Yuki Sekiguchi, Chairman of the Defense Attaché Association. The musicians played an integral part in the success of the ball and the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) made history in providing the band for this prestigious event.

The first performance consisted of a five-piece jazz ensemble, providing an elegant backdrop as guests arrived and mingled until dinner was served. Meanwhile an eight-piece ensemble from the U.S. National Guard Band was performing just outside the entrance as guests made their way into the residence.

Prior to dinner being served, the NAVRES and U.S. National Guard Bands combined into one band and played the Canadian, American and Japanese anthems. Musicians and guests alike were moved by the music and you could hear a pin drop after the final anthem was played. This was truly a special moment for everyone, especially for the Canadian representatives and musicians.

A trumpet call summoned the guests to dinner and announced the beginning of speeches at various times throughout the evening. The full concert band provided background music during dinner and finished with “Heart of Oak”, the official march of the RCN.

After dinner, dancing was on the menu and the dance floor was full until the end of the evening. The band received many accolades from guests throughout the evening and received multiple requests for encores. As the evening drew to a close, the band’s efforts were recognized in a moving address by Canadian Defense Attaché RAdm William Truelove, as well as RAdm Sekiguchi. The musicians were thanked and each presented with a Defense Attaché Association coin.

The NAVRES band’s performance was a huge success, not only for the RCN and NAVRES, but also for the Canadian Armed Forces and the Music Branch overall. Members of the band were very proud and grateful for the privilege to perform at such an exceptional event.