Friday, February 29, 2008

Directions to Lake Orion HS (Festival Site)

Monday, February 25, 2008

New York Philharmonic in Pyongyang

Ok, so this may seem unrelated to the blog, but I can't think of a more palpable example of the importance of music in the world.

The New York Philharmonic, one of the 5 major orchestras in the United States, has been on a concert tour in Asia over the past few weeks. The culminating and by far most notable performance occurred yesterday in Pyongyang, North Korea. Allowing a Western orchestra--let alone the hundreds of journalists and paying patrons in attendance--to come to a country normally guarded from public view, so famous for the iron fist of its dictator, so infamous for its record on human rights and status in the world nuclear club...well, the run-on sentence speaks to how big a deal it is.

The concert was broadcast on State radio in North Korea. For probably the first time, North Koreans heard "The Star-Spangled Banner," alongside Dvorak, Gershwin, Wagner and others. The Americans were also privy to a presentation of traditional Korean music and dance.

I just think that this is one of the most important roles that music can play in the world: that of wordless diplomacy. It's not the first-time that musicians have worn this hat:

"Whatever the political results, the visit will take its place with other landmark orchestra journeys, like the Philadelphia Orchestra’s concert in China in 1973 during Ping-Pong diplomacy and the Boston Symphony’s triumphant appearance in the Soviet Union in 1956. The New York Philharmonic also visited the Soviet Union in 1959." -- New York Times, 2/26/08

To read up on the concert, click here:

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Booster Informational Video Now Online

This is the Berkley Instrumental Boosters informational video, made by Paul Cooney and Carole Gatwood. It is a superb example of all that the boosters do for kids in the district, and I hope any readers will show it friends and family (especially younger prospective band/orchestra students).

Monday, February 18, 2008

Slight Change in Symphonic Band Festival Time

District IV has just changed times to fit in other ensembles at different festival locations. As a result, the Concert Band is still playing at the same time (10:55 am), but the Symphonic Band has been moved from 1:30 pm to 2:05 pm. We are playing right between two of our neighbors--Birmingham Seaholm HS and Ferndale HS.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Band and Orchestra Festival Times Announced

The times/location for band and orchestra festival have been announced. Both bands will perform at Lake Orion HS on Saturday, March 1st at the following times:

Concert Band--10:55 AM

Symphonic Band--1:30 PM

I hope all friends and family will be able to come and support the groups, as they've been working very hard in preparation.

District IV Solo and Ensemble Results

The BHS band program was well represented this past weekend with excellent performances from our students, braving the weather to get to Walled Lake Northern. Students receiving a first division rating (and eligible for State Solo and Ensemble) are as follows:

Anna Dimanin--trumpet solo
Tyler Fritsch--trumpet solo
Mark Jones--baritone solo
Nick LeVeck--trumpet solo
Megan MacDonald--flute solo
Megan MacDonald--piano solo
Rosie Mardit--piano solo
Peter Rifel--snare solo
Brittany Shimshock--flute/violin duet
And the brass quintet members: Nick LeVeck, Tyler Fritsch, Tim Higle, Chelsea Rowe, and Mark Jones.

Students receiving a second division rating are as follows:

Rachel Barth--clarinet solo
Chloe Bennett and Anna Goldberg--clarinet duet
Austen Campbell-Fox--oboe solo
Justine Ciaravino--clarinet solo
Ben Duchan and Chris Schahfer--trumpet/saxophone duet
Matt Germaine--trombone solo
Aaron Levin--snare solo
Ben Levin--trumpet solo
Stephen Tryban--trombone solo

Congratulations to everyone who performed! It's this sort of thing that makes our program better and better.