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Billings prepares for Symphony in the Park

Posted at 9:24 AM, Jun 23, 2023
and last updated 2023-06-24 17:38:43-04

BILLINGS - Pioneer Park will come alive on Sunday with the sounds of the Billings Symphony.

In its 51st year, Symphony in the Park is a free concert for the public and a real treat for music lovers. It's also meaningful for the musicians who say they look forward to the event.

Richelle Sitton has been a part of the outdoor concert for most of its run. Her love affair with the bass started in the fourth grade.

“There was a bass player and I said, 'That’s what I have to play,' and everyone said, 'Oh no,' and I said, 'Oh yes.' And here I am still playing it all these years later,” Sitton said.

The Billings Senior High teacher has been with the symphony for 41 years since she was just 14, and she says it is still a thrill to play in front of the big crowd at Pioneer Park.

“Seeing all those people that maybe they don’t ever come to the symphony," Sitton said. "Maybe the only time they come is Billings Symphony in the Park, and so they get to sit on their lawn chairs and have a good time and we get to see all those faces out there on that hill."

Billings Symphony General Manager Brad Constantine said the organization puts a lot of effort into the free performance.

"It’s the biggest event that we put on and it’s our final event of the season so we are really just excited to give this back to the community," he said.

This year's event will feature a selection of movie tunes and other recognizable music. Also included will be a salute to the armed forces as well as the kid's conductor contest and the popular instrument petting zoo.

The event begins at 4 Sunday afternoon with the Montana Fiddle Club taking the stage first, followed by the Billings Community Band at 5 pm before the Billings Symphony's performance at 7 pm.