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The Regimental Band of
The Royal Winnipeg Rifles

 

The role of The Regimental Band of The Winnipeg Rifles Band is to provide musical support to the Canadian Forces, and is currently the only authorized brass and reed band in 38th Brigade, thereby fulfilling a dual role as the official band of for the Brigade.

The band is currently under the direction of Capt Ryan Wehrle, Director of Music, and WO Claude Ouellette, Bugle Major. Balanced instrumentation allows the band to perform a variety of music; while marches will always be part of The Regimental Band’s repertoire, they also play concert selections, modern and classical arrangements, as well as big band and contemporary music. In addition to its primary role of being a marching band for ceremonial occasions and concert band, The Regimental Band has also formed woodwind and brass ensembles. As a fully authorized brass and reed band in the Canadian Army Reserves, the band maintains its full compliment of 35 musicians, as well as receiving help from a small core of dedicated volunteers and retired members.

A more detailed account of the history of the band can be found on page dedicated to The History of The Regimental Band page and in the article published in The Canadian Winds Journal (2008) Vol. 6, No. 2, pp. 58-61 by former Director of Music Capt Danielle Gaudry, CD Ret’d.

In the summers of 1999 and 2007 the band performed at Le Festival International De Musiques Militares de Québec in Québec City. In the spring of 2000 three members of the band accompanied The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada during a pilgrimage to Holland, commemorating the 50th anniversary of Holland’s liberation. In August of 2000 the band performed before an estimated 50,000 people during the opening ceremonies of the Pooh Friendship Day, a celebration of Winnipeg’s ties to the beloved character of Winnie the Pooh. In June 2003 the band had the privilege of travelling to France to play for the opening of the Juno Beach Centre, and numerous smaller ceremonies in villages in the Normandy region.

The Regimental Band of The Royal Winnipeg Rifles has provided musicians to serve with the Ceremonial Guard Band in Ottawa to perform the changing of the Guard ceremony on Parliament Hill. Members of the band have also secured summer employment serving with the National Naval Reserve band.

As a reserve band, the Rifles have had success and have proudly seen some of its members advance into permanent positions with Canada’s Regular Force Bands.