ADA — The Oklahoma Centennial Celebration concert Saturday at East Central University will honor two former ECU and Ada band directors, present a Percy Grainger piece with historic ties to ECU, pay tribute to those who settled Oklahoma Territory and premiere the much anticipated "Oklahoma Centennial Suite for Band" by Ada composer W.T. Skye Garcia.

The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Dorothy Summers Theatre and is open to the public at no charge. It will celebrate 100 years of Band Masters and Composers of Ada and 100 years of Oklahoma's statehood from 1907 to 2007.

ECU graduate Dr. Ed Huckeby will present a tribute to the late Don Gant, ECU's director of bands from 1957 to 1974, then direct the ECU Wind Ensemble in "On Wings of Eagles." Huckeby, a professor of music and chief academic officer at Northeastern State University's Broken Arrow campus, wrote the piece in 1994 in honor of Gant, who organized and developed the modern era ECU Tiger Marching Band. Gant wrote the words to the ECU Tiger Fight Song, which was premiered at ECU's Homecoming in 1962.

ECU Dean of Students Bronson Warren, a former Ada High School band director, will present the tribute to the late Jerry Howard, a former AHS band director, owner of an Ada music store and a member of the Oklahoma Band Masters Association Hall of Fame.

Howard's son, Richard, director of bands at Byng High School, will direct the Wind Ensemble in "Accolada," a memorial tribute commissioned by the East Central Band Directors Association and written by Huckeby in 1996.

Allen Correll, ECU director of bands, will conduct the Wind Ensemble's performance of "The Immovable Do" by Percy Grainger. The wind band arrangement of the famous piece was premiered at ECU on Feb. 23, 1940.

Grainger composed the piece after the high C of the harmonium he was playing broke and began to sound continuously. The title comes from one of the two kinds of Tonic sol-fa notation, the one with an "immovable Do" in which "Do" always stands for C. In his composition, the "Immovable Do" is a high drone on C which is sounded throughout the whole piece.

Pianists Dr. Starla Hibler and Rudy Lupinski will perform "Prairie Suite," the 2005 commissioned piece for the Oklahoma Music Teachers Association with a narrative by Dr. Linda Reese, associate professor of history.

Written by Garcia as a tribute to those who overcame hardship to build a new life in the country's heartland, it depicts scenes from the Oklahoma Territory period and is a prequel to Garcia's "Oklahoma Centennial Suite."

Correll will direct the Wind Ensemble in the "Oklahoma Centennial Suite" which Garcia originally composed for piano. Huckeby arranged the five movements for band, including high school and small bands, so that schools across the state can perform the suite for their towns' centennial celebrations in 2007.

The work is a "centennial gift" from the ECU Foundation Inc. and the Ada Arts Council, as CDs of the ECU performance, the band score and the narrative will be available to schools at no charge.

Dr. Alvin Turner, dean of ECU's School of Humanities and Social Sciences and a noted state historian, conceived the project in 2001. He wrote brief historical narratives to introduce the five movements: "Grand Land Overture," "Ceremonial Chant," "Oklahoma Land Run," "Dust and Determination" and "New Frontiers."

Turner will present the narratives at the premiere. Each narrative relates to aspects of 100 years of Oklahoma history.