“SYNERGY” – a free, collaborative concert featuring local musicians and guest artists – will be presented at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 12, at Joplin’s East Middle School, 4594 E. 20th St.

The concert will include a collaborative group of student musicians from Joplin High School and Missouri Southern State University.

Donald Linn, director of bands at Missouri Southern, and Brian Kelly, his counterpart at Joplin High School, are both in their first years in those roles. They wanted to offer their students a new experience by collaborating on a program.

The “SYNERGY” program will feature the JHS Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble along with Missouri Southern’s Concert Band and Wind Ensemble.

“For us to bring these two groups together is amazing,” says Linn. “The special thing about this concert is the spirit of coming together. We make music together and we make music for other people. That’s a very special thing.”

Guest artists and conductors have helped to shape the program’s musical offerings.

Dr. Frank Tracz, director of bands at Kansas State University, was asked to serve as clinician and to direct.

“He is one of the giants of our wind-conducting profession,” says Linn. “It is my intent to always bring in a guest of that caliber to work with our ensemble.”

Junior Melanie Crider, winner of the 2019 Concerto/Aria Competition, will be performing on the flute; while Xan Perkins, a faculty member who teaches low brass, will be featured on the tuba.

Admission is free and open to the public.