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We first encountered The Moonlight Serenade Orchestra at a New Year’s Eve party in Leavenworth, KS. They made that night so magical that just a few months later when we just HAD to dance to their music again. The big surprise of the night was that it wasn’t just an amazing night of music with the orchestra, it was one magical night when the orchestra let my then boyfriend announce the next song! After he announced Nate King Cole’s,“L-O-V-E” he dropped to one knee and proposed!

So, we just HAD to have them at our wedding reception! The impact when our guest walked in to an 18 piece orchestra was overwhelming. They filled the space with joy and wonderful energy. The timeless music, expertly delivered, had all generations dancing and reminishing while making wonderful new memories. So many of our guest continue to compliment on how wonderful the music was. One of the most reoccurring comments from the evening is that while the space was filled with amazing music, it was such an unbelievable surprise to be able to carry on conversations even across the table!

We had a little over 300 guest and literally all enjoyed the music. Those that hadn’t danced in years couldn’t sit still. Younger guest were new to some of the timeless classics, but quickly fell in love with them. When they mixed in the 80’s, 90’s, and 2000’s pieces the place was rocking even more. Kilts flung, dresses twirled, and dreams came true thanks to the wonderful music that made our reception epic and truly the best night of our life. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to take them on the honeymoon!


Brad & Judi Buchanan

Buchanan Wedding, Overland Park, Kansas



During our 2023 annual festival, the Glenn Miller Birthplace Society and our members enthusiastically welcomed the return to Clarinda of our friends from Kansas City, the Moonlight Serenade Orchestra. And the band did not let anyone down. Among the many talented entertainers and groups appearing at the festival, the Moonlight Serenade Orchestra stood out as approachable, engaging and embraceable. The atmosphere in the auditorium was pitch-perfect, seamlessly fitting the audience and time slot. The playlist was an intelligently structured series of vocal pods with representation across the great American songbook from the 30s through the 60s, smartly interspersed with instrumentals, generally Glenn Miller standards.

In a pleasant manner sprinkled with good humor and banter, the musicians appeared to sense the mood of the musically informed and sophisticated audience --- and did not let them down. And in return, our audience gave them an enthusiastic reception. Although appearing at the Glenn Miller festival, the band performed a Miller-friendly playlist, but also sprinkled with many pop and jazz standards in a fresh and appealing manner.

Standouts included the engaging Peggy Lee-like voice of Paula McLaughlin with the opening "Cool. Cool. Cool of the Evening;" “Opus One,” “Cheek to Cheek,” “The Very Thought of You,” “Why Don’t You Do Right,” “Orange Colored Sky,” “This Can’t Be Love,” and “They Can’t Take That Away from Me.” Likewise, Brian Larrios offered pleasant Frank Sinatra-like vocal interpretations of “All of Me,” “I Only Have Eyes for You,” “The Way You Look Tonight,” “the Lady Is a Tramp,” “I’ve Got You Under My Skin,” “Fly Me to the Moon,” “Ain’t That A Kick In The Head,” and “Mack the Knife.”

Miller standards sprinkled through the proceedings included the “Moonlight Serenade” theme, “At Last,” “A String of Pearls,” “Little Brown Jug,” “American Patrol,” “Tuxedo Junction,” and, naturally, “In the Mood,” introduced in great good humor. Miller’s version of “Star Dust” with a rousing and unavoidable “Kansas City” rounded out the performance. The performance by the Moonlight Serenade Orchestra in Clarinda was excellent, enjoyable and they are most welcome to return to all of our future events. And the Glenn Miller Birthplace Society gladly recommends the Moonlight Serenade Orchestra to others.


Dennis Spragg, Glenn Miller Collections, Colorado

Shari Greenwood, Glenn Miller Birthplace Museum, Clarinda, Iowa



I have been working with Ron Ernst and the Moonlight Serenade Orchestra since 2014! They have performed for every TWA Museum/Hangar Dance since we started.

Ron and his fellow musicians have been a pleasure to work with. They are very professional in all aspects and always prompt in their start times and break times.

The Moonlight Serenade Orchestra provides us with beautiful music to dance to! Our dances are especially aimed at the music from the 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s. Their singers are entertaining and very professional as well. We have many ballroom dancers in attendance and they give the MSO glowing reviews as they are leaving at the end of the evening.

The Moonlight Serenade Orchestra provides a very fun and most memorable evening of music! Our dance would not be what it is without them!!!


Nancy Sitzmann

TWA Museum Event Coordinator & Board Member



It has been a pleasure to host the Moonlight Serenade Orchestra at the Robert J. Dole Institute Of Politics at the University Of Kansas since 2008. Every year, over 300 veterans, families, and friends enjoy listening and dancing to your outstanding music. They love the swing music, the outstanding vocalists, and the addition of 70’s and 80’s “popular” tunes!

We personally enjoy working with Ron Ernst and his fellow musicians to make our Tribute To Veterans Gala the best it can be for the men and women who have sacrificed so much for our country.

It has always been an evening to remember…..



Barbara Ballard, Ph.D

Senior Associate Director



The Moonlight Serenade Orchestra was a BIG hit at our Guest Artist Concert at the Baker University Jazz Festival. The Band was very entertaining and provided a wonderful level of artistry!


Dr. Frank Perez

Director of Bands, Baker University



The Moonlight Serenade Orchestra provided exceptional dance music at The Heritage Event and Arts Center in Leavenworth, Kansas for a wonderful New Year's Eve party Ron Ernst was great to work with in planning for the event. He made a special trip to Leavenworth to evaluate the stage to be used by the band and the dressing areas. By the time the Band was to begin playing, everything was in order thus making the evening a smashing success. The music was excellent and the dance floor crowded. What a nice group of musicians.


Scotty Brezgiel

The Heritage Event and Arts Center