''We're a family,'' says Laura Harris, president of D.C.'s Different Drummers. ''We try to take care of each other, we look out for each other.... DCDD offers individuals a safe place to come and play, regardless of what their sexual orientation, regardless of what their skill level is. You walk into the rehearsal and you're immediately embraced.''
Three years ago, the 30-year-old organization started its Intimate Winds concert. ''It's something that our members in the small ensembles look forward to every year,'' Harris says. ''[The concert allows them] to showcase their talents and to play music that we don't normally play in the [Capitol Pride] Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble.'' (Not to mention the DCDD Marching Band or DC Swing!) Instead of 60 or more participants, the annual Intimate Winds, set for this Saturday, Feb. 5, features just 20 players. And instead of one big performance group, several small ensembles -- as small as a flute duet -- take the stage, including Sax in the City, La Reeda Loca and Quintesence.
Harris, who plays clarinet and percussion, doesn't have a role in this year's concert other than as president of DCDD. She's simply looking forward to the performances and to strolling around the grounds of the host venue, the lovely -- and intimate -- Hillwood Estate.
Intimate Winds is Saturday, Feb. 5, at 3 p.m.