The history of the Motor City Brass Band ("MCBB") is an empowering story of community, friendship, and the success that comes with commitment and endurance. What started as a grassroots ensemble of friends enjoying music together has now grown into a nationally-recognized organization with a dedicated following of supporters, a first-rate artistic product, and effective and valuable education and outreach programs.
Like many musical organizations, MCBB was formed by a group of people looking for an outlet in which to play great music. Unlike other organizations, the medium was a brass band, almost as atypical in the Metro area today as it was when the Band was started in 1996. However, within a few short weeks, a committed group of players had gathered, ready to support the success of the fledgling organization.
Today, MCBB has emerged as a vibrant organization whose artistic enterprises are best displayed in a four-concert subscription series at the Ford Community and Performing Arts Center in Dearborn. MCBB also performs nearly 20 concerts a year at various locations in Michigan and throughout the Midwest. The band prides itself on the level of soloists it engages, both to perform as guest artists at concerts and to provide clinics to metro area students.
Musical Director/Conductor Craig Strain has been at the helm of the ensemble since its inception. His leadership of the Band follows an extensive teaching career which included high school, community college and Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp. A prolific arranger, Mr. Strain has contributed substantially to the ensemble's music library. His involvement with MCBB brings new music to the community that would not be otherwise heard in metro Detroit.
MCBB has been invited to perform on its own merit as the state representative for Michigan State Day at Kennedy Center for Performing Arts in Washington in 2001. The band has also received several invitations to perform with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra at Greenfield Village for the annual Salute To America concerts. In 2005, MCBB participated in its second US Open Brass Band Championship held in Arlington Heights, Illinois and won the award for Best Performance of a March (Death or Glory) as well as taking Second Place in the overall competition. In 2011, MCBB was honored at the Dearborn Community Arts Council Awards for their community involvement as an arts organization.
Motor City Youth Brass Band (MYCBB) is the only performance ensemble of its kind in Southeast Michigan - a brass band in the British tradition designed for intermediate- to advanced-level brass and percussion students. MCYBB members are in grades 8-12, and represent several middle, junior high, and high schools across the Metro Detroit area. Throughout our concert season, our student members develop and enhance their brass and percussion performance technique, learn and perform a variety of traditional and non-traditionalbrass band music, and study under the direction of some of the area's finest professional musical talents.