Tinley Park Community Band News
THE source for information about the Tinley Park Community Bands


Editor Emieritus: T. Herman Zweibel  Editor-in-Chief: William Randolph Hearst  Chief Reporter: Lynn Hojnacki






TODAY'S WEATHER: It's always sunny!



TINLEY PARK, IL –The Tinley Park Community Band is active year-round sharing their talent and bringing the sound of live jazz music to Tinley Park and surrounding communities. Their repertoire includes big band-era classics, jazz standards, pop and rock hits. The Band was established in 1987. Members come from all over Chicagoland. Musicians age 14 and older are invited to join.  There are no auditions or residency requirements. Rehearsals are on Mondays from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. at McCarthy Park, 16801 S. 80th Avenue, Tinley Park, IL 60477.

See the Schedule for all of our upcoming dates.

For more information on the band -- visit this website at www.tinleyband.org, E-mail us at tinleyband@gmail.com, call us at 708-620-7701, visit us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/tinleyband or send mail to Tinley Park Community Band, PO Box 562, Tinley Park, IL 60477. 



TINLEY PARK, IL – The Tinley Park Community Band, has awarded the 2017 S. J. Platko Award to flautist, band librarian, and our de facto business manager, D. J. Karwatka, and to long-time principal clarinetist and charter band member Jim Liska.

Here are what some of her fellow band members said about D.J.:

·         Has spent countless hours organizing the band’s music library, along with selflessly volunteering to take on numerous “administrative functions,” not limited to: soliciting and organizing the gift raffle, other spaghetti dinner organizational tasks, setting up the “ticket booth” at concerts, etc.  Her actions give an air of professionalism to our group.  Finally, her and Dan open their home to band for a Christmas party every year.  She is an asset to our band and deserves consideration for the S.J. Platko award.

·         She's hardworking /organized /dedicated and very conscientious-takes her job very serious, and the band is fortunate that she devotes so much time and effort to our organization. I appreciate all she does for our group!

·         I know the importance of keeping documents in order for quick reference. Just last week during rehearsal, DJ was called on to retrieve and copy from the original, a piece of music. I’ve watched her do this several times this fall and winter and am impressed by her swift and positive response. She is a real asset to the organization.

Regarding Jim:

·         Jim plays clarinet in the band. He’s been a longtime faithful member of the band. He regularly attends rehearsals and concerts and rarely misses unless he’s on vacation. Jim is a charter member which means he has been with the band for 30 years since it first formed in 1987.

·         Jim has donated countless pieces of music to the band. He has purchased this music, copied it and brought it to band. We have played many of these pieces.

·         Jim is also the section leader for the clarinet section. He has also organized the clarinet choir to perform at the annual spaghetti dinner and some of the holiday winter concerts. He has a huge library of music for clarinet ensemble and it has been performed. Since retirement Jim has arranged many tunes for clarinet choir and that has also been performed.

Jim has also had two of his sons perform with the band, including current principal percussionist Kevin Liska.

The S.J. Platko Award is given annually by the band to someone who has made special and extraordinary contributions to the band.

Any individual, past, present, band member or non-band member is eligible to be nominated and selected.  All current active band members are eligible to make one nomination.  Nomination forms will be collected and verified.  Ballots will be made and the band will select a winner based upon which nomination most closely portrays the ideals of outstanding service and dedication that the Stephen J. Platko Award represents.



TINLEY PARK, IL – The band was shocked by the news of the sudden passing of former director Stephen J. Platko on March 1, 2016.  He was the Tinley Park Community Band Director for 15 years from 1989 - 2004. Steve was on his way home from Lewis University from a choir rehearsal. The band is currently planning to honor Steve at the Cavalcade of Bands concert in the fall.

The Lewis University Choir premiered his last completed composition entitled "Lazarus of the Four Days" on April 26, 2016 at the Saint Charles Borromeo Chapel on the campus grounds. At the request of Steve’s family, many band members were able to attend the concert.

Steve is survived by his beloved wife of 52 years Georgine (Shaffer) Platko; daughters Larissa (Ray) Barbee of Nashville, TN, Beth (Matthew) Petersen of Chicago, IL; granddaughters Claire and Natalie Petersen; his sister Christine (Richard) Serkland of Alpine, TX; and one niece and several nephews and grandnephews.

Stephen is preceded in death by his parents John and Ann Platko; and his brother the Very Reverend John Platko.

Stephen was born September 2, 1938 in Joliet, Illinois. He was a lifelong member of St. Nicholas Orthodox Church, serving as choir director for 50 years and as President of the Church Council for the past six years.  He graduated from Northwestern University where he received a Bachelor and Master of Music Education degrees.  During his 35 year teaching career, Stephen was band director at Lockport Taft Grade school, choir director at Lockport West High School, band director at Tinley Park High School, and Supervisor of Fine Arts for the Bremen Community High Schools.  He also directed the Tinley Park “Arts Alive!” Community Band for ten years following his retirement from full-time teaching.

During his retirement, Stephen devoted his energies to music composition.  His works for symphonic band, orchestra, and voice have been performed at the International Mid­west Band Clinic, WFMT Radio Chicago Composer Series, and at the Budingen, Germany Millennium Celebration.  His compositions have been featured by the Joliet American Legion Band, University of Kansas Concert Band, Lewis University Choir and by colleges and universities throughout the country.  Stephen was also a prolific composer of liturgical works for Eastern Orthodox worship.  He received the Illinois Humanities Council “Studs Terkel Award” for the year 2000 for his musical accomplishments and community service for the Village of Tinley Park.

Stephen was an inspiration to all who knew him.  Through his music he expressed his passion for life.  Through his life he taught us much about the importance of family, self-reliance, humor, ingenuity, patience and civility.

Visitation was on Sunday, March 6, 2016 at St. Nicholas Orthodox Church and the funeral service was held the following day with interment at St. Mary Nativity Cemetery in Crest Hill.

The band extends its deepest sympathies to the Platko family.

Band member Lynn Hojnacki contributed to this article.








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