Big horns join to celebrate holidays
Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2013

Big horns join to celebrate holidays

  • Want to go? Tuba Christmas will be at 7 p.m. Dec. 14 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Rehearsals will be that afternoon at the Cox Mill High School band room. To sign up to play, go to to reserve your spot and get the schedule for the day. Or call event coordinator Joseph Earp at 704-787-6420. For those who prefer to be a spectator, the Tuba Christmas concert will be 7 p.m. Dec. 14 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

It’s that time of year again. Don’t you just feel it in the air? People are hanging up lights, shopping for gifts and baking cookies.

I know what you’re thinking: We haven’t even celebrated Thanksgiving yet! But those who absolutely love Christmas have been waiting all year for this and are already filled with anticipation of the festivities coming up.

For instance, registration for the third annual Tuba Christmas is already under way, and spots are filling up fast for musicians at this one-of-a-kind musical concert.

“Tuba Christmas is an annual event to bring local musicians, both young and old, together that play baritone, euphonium, sousaphone and tuba to play a bunch of Christmas tunes and have a great time,” explained Joseph Earp, Cox Mill High School’s director of bands.

When Cox Mill High School first opened in 2009, Earp was hired to cultivate a strong and successful band program. Within just a few short years the Spirit of Cox Mill Symphonic Band has earned many superior ratings and awards.

“Some of the major accomplishments of the Cox Mill program include the symphonic band’s first Grade 6 superior and appearance during the third year of the school’s opening,” Earp said, “and the marching band earning its first grand champion in the second year of the program”

Earp keeps this band ensemble very busy. Just last week the “Spirit of Cox Mill” band performed at the N.C. Music Educators Conference.

“It was based on our audition and acceptance back in the spring of this year,” Earp said.

“This wasn’t a competition; it was a way to showcase our band and school. Only three high school bands are selected each year to perform at this conference.”

Research has found that learning music helps kids excel in other subjects more. It has also learned that band programs allow students to achieve and grow, hone their skills and learn to work as a team. Those skills will help these young people no matter what field they choose to go into.

“Our band students are taught the value of self-discipline, respect, honor and pride with the understanding to cultivate lifelong learners and appreciation of music in our school, community and state,” Earp said.

Asked how many performers he is expecting for Tuba Christmas, Earp said, “Hopefully over 100.”

Both students and adults are invited to sign up if they can play a baritone horn, euphonium, sousaphone or tuba, he said.

“It is an opportunity to bring together multiple schools and adults in the community to make a very large band of brass.”

Linda Doherty is a freelance writer. Have a story idea for Linda? Email her at

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