Do you all recall the least loved member of any marching band? That one sound that seemed to add so little to the overall musical experience that’s provided on the field? No, we’re not talking about the drummers, though we can’t blame you for making that assumption. This is also marching band, not a rock band, so the bassist is ALSO the wrong answer, thanks for playing. We’re talking about the powerful “oompah” instrument that is the Tuba, and International Tuba Day celebrates the depth and diversity of sound that this beautiful brass wind is capable of producing. So whether you know a Tuba Player, or are one today, International Tuba Day celebrates your underappreciated contribution to the arts.
History of International Tuba Day
These amazing performers really are underappreciated, and International Tuba Day gives recognition them and all the struggles they face in the pursuit of their art. What struggles you say? Well let’s start with the image that the world puts forth, the big heavy man with the big heavy instrument puffing away on it with cheeks like bellows. That’s typically the first vision, and it often underscores the sheer lung capacity necessary for playing such a bombastic instrument. They’re also seen as having little to no personality, which is just utterly untrue! Playing such a lumbering instrument requires a significant amount of personality to make the performance bright and interesting!
Thankfully, we have a champion to come forth and help turn this image around. Joel Day first established this holiday in 1979 while part of the Lower Merion High School Band. He and his fellow tuba player realized that their instruments simply failed to receive the respect and recognition they deserved. Little did he know that his efforts would result in a worldwide explosion of Tuba enthusiasm, with music being collected and performed that exalted the Tuba’s range and interest.
How to celebrate International Tuba Day
Well first off, if you’re a Tuba player, dust off that instrument and give the world a taste of what it’s been missing. The grand and powerful voice of the Tuba is amazing, and in the hands of a skilled player can definitely add a broad range of personality to any performance. It’s deep, throaty, and not to be denied. You may be able to drown out the flutes and saxophones and violins, but the Tuba will pound right through the sound and make you feel it in your bones. International Tuba Day is your opportunity to remind the world what a Tuba player can do.