Nostalgia took over veterans in attendance at Texas A&M University – Kingsville’s Jones Auditorium on Veteran’s Day, Nov. 11, with classical three – part harmony provided by the Victory Belles, ambassadors of the National World War II Museum in New Orleans.
The Belles were featured as a part of the University’s Presidential Performing & Visual Arts Series aiming to broaden the exposure of art, music and theatre performances for University students and the community.
Since 2009, The Victory Belles have been stationed at the National WWII museum where red, white and blue are always present and the ladies carry out weekly musical performances.
In addition to the Belle’s national shows, the trios also travel the globe to share their exclusive portrayal of American history with new crowds.
Of the fifteen ladies that are a part of the Victory Belles, a trio of the group performed on the auditorium stage. Ashley Harris, Heather Gault and Rebecca Nugent have been touring as an ensemble with their patriotic pipes for six months.
This particular stop for the tour had brought these musicians to Kingsville on the day dedicated to honoring those who have served our country.
“Its really about recognizing the sacrifice and the service of people who came before us,” said Gault. “(We honor those who) served in the military, people currently serving and celebrating the musical heritage and Americana of that time.”
Celebrating the musical heritage and Americana of the 1940s is exactly what the Victory Belles strive to achieve in the delivery of their performance.
Veterans and community audience members alike were a part of a crowd engaging show that had a few wardrobe changes and musical hits of WWII, like “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” “God Bless America,” and the “Service Medley”.
“World War II was a very special time, because the country has not truly come together like that since,” Said Nugent. “I believe it was the greatest generation, so to honor their music, legend and sacrifice lets all vets know they will not be forgotten. That’s our mission.”
Veterans attending the Victory Belle’s performance were, in fact, not forgotten. In the midst of singing onstage the Belle’s began to make their way into the audience, serenading vets with up close and personal interactions.
One lucky U.S. Navy veteran, Charlie Loving, was even taken onto the stage to partake in the show and even dance with Belle, Ashley Harris, who hopes their work reaches a younger fan base.
“We’d like to bring this music to new generations who maybe are hearing it for the first time, with hopes that they embrace it,” said Harris. “Or just continue to listen and get back into that classic music.”
The Victory Belles brought the patriotic evening to a close by receiving a standing ovations before spending time taking pictures and signing autographs for veteran admirers and new fans after the show.