Members of the Lake George Community Band march down Mountain Ave. in the village during a rehearsal session in 2011. The band now has an accomplished new director, and an expanded roster of musicians. They've been performing a series of summer outdoor concerts in Lake George Village's Shepard Park — and their next is set for 8 p.m. Aug. 1
Michael Craner, an accomplished jazz musician and currently an orchestral music teacher at Schuylerville Central School, has been named the new director of the Lake George Community Band.
Craner has been directing concert bands and jazz ensembles for years — in addition to performing in noted jazz groups in the Capital Region.
Craner is an accomplished electric and double bassist who has studied and performed with such international jazz stars as Ron Carter and Cecil McBee.
Craner is currently the director of both the Schuylerville High School Symphonic Band and Schuylerville Jazz Ensemble, and he has conducted numerous All-County musical groups. Also, Craner has served as an adjunct faculty member at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute where he directed the RPI Jazz Ensemble.
A graduate of the esteemed New England Conservatory of Music, Craner is currently the bassist with the Tony Jenkins Jazz Trip, the Ray Alexander group, and the Jonathan Lorentz Quartet — all acclaimed for their musicianship.
Craner and his family live in South Glens Falls. He gives private instrument instructions, and has taught at graduate schools and has conducted bands at SUNY Oswego. He also has conducted pit orchestras for several theater groups, Lake George Community Band publicist Dale Parry said recently.
“We are excited to have Michael Craner join us as director/conductor and we know the audience will enjoy the programs he has selected for us to perform at each of our concerts,” Perry said.
Lake George band expands, changes venue
Over the past several years, the Lake George Community Band and has been gaining expertise as it has expanded, Perry said.
“With each year, we continue to grow in excellence,” he said. “ We have added more talented musicians, improved our skills and expanded our repertoire.”
Because the band has expanded, it has outgrown its traditional concert venue, the Charles Wood Theater in Glens Falls, where it has regularly played to a full house.
The Lake George Community Band wil now be performing most of its concerts at the Glens Falls High School auditorium except for the group's Summer Concert Series at the Shepard Park amphitheater in Lake George. Their next performance in Shepard Park is Thursday Aug. 1, and the concert will be followed by an extensive fireworks show over the lake.