Military Music Festival a big success

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Photo: David Cannon

"A big success" is the way the president of the Quebec City International Festival of Military Bands described last week's popular event staged throughout the city.

Crowd estimates were not available as of Monday.

"Again this year, people from Quebec and elsewhere responded in big numbers, making the festival a big success," Yves Lachance, president and director general of the event, said in a statement issued Monday in French. "The event offers a good balance between indoor concerts and free outdoor shows."

Lachance said this year's festival offered something for all musical tastes.

Once again, the outdoor concerts featured at this year's event proved more popular, according to festival officials. Among those were daily performances in front of the Manège Militaire featuring music by the renowned Voltigeurs de Québec and a show put on by the world famous New York City Police Department Band.

Indoor shows like the performance of the famed Russian Cossacks at the Grand Theatre and the three-day spectacular Military Tattoo at the Colisée, which featured virtually every band that performed during the festival, gave fans a taste of music that perhaps they hadn't previously experienced.

Along with the Tattoo, Saturday's parade, which featured the Bersaglieri Band of Bedizzole, Italy, was a highlight of the festival. The 42-member trumpet ensemble performs literally on the run, racing through their performances.

Parade goers also got a glimpse of two "giant war heroes," wooden likenesses of famed Quebec soldiers Gilles Lamontagne and the late Lt. Col. Jean Charles Forbes. The caricatures stood 18 feet tall, and were rolled through the parade on wheels.

Forbes passed away this spring before he could see his likeness in action.