Spring Concert Recognizes Seniors


Ava Mason, Staff Writer

A good finale is important to any musician, and for the students at the Spring Concert, they seemed to achieve just that. Band and Orchestra came together for their final performance of the year on May 11.

“The performance went terrifically well! The groups all played beautifully and every student displayed highly professional behavior throughout the evening,” said Johnny Johnson, band and orchestra instructor. “This performance is a bit challenging, logistically, but everyone was where they were supposed to be, helping to move from one set to the next. It all went smoothly and the fact that it remained relaxed all evening contributed to the fine musical result.”

Freshmen Christine Zhu, a member of orchestra, believed that all the hard work the band and orchestra put into the performance payed off. “We worked really hard on our pieces and we’ve been rehearsing for weeks now so it was really nice to hear everything come together,” said Zhu

Not only was music played, but seniors were featured and received awards. All seniors received a gift, but a select few were recognized for musical excellence. These recipients included Erica Wilson, Erika Riepe, and Hayden Hunt.

The senior awards are voted on by the students. I have veto power in case I feel they got it wrong but in all my years of teaching, the students have never got it wrong,” said Johnson.

“I got the Contrada award, which is why I played the big solo, and then I also got the John Philip Sousa band award,” said senior Erica Wilson., “A lot of people had told me that they had voted for me, but I was surprised.”

Although throughout the majority of the year the band and orchestra played separately, for their final performances of the year they worked together. “In the beginning of the year we have a pops concert, where we have orchestra and band at the same concert, but then for the rest of the year we are split up, and then we come back together at the end,” said Wilson. “So we start together and end together”.

“When some of them arrived as freshmen, the instruments they played were almost as big as they were. Some of them played better than others. Some progressed more than others. But none of that mattered, really,” said Johnson.”What matters is that they stuck with it, kept music in their lives, worked to understand the art, learned to better express themselves, and hopefully they feel good about what we were able to accomplish together through music.”

Johnson noted that the awards and performance are good ways to send the seniors off and thank them for their part in the band or orchestra. “It’s also bittersweet because it’s the last time we all get to perform together before the seniors leave us. That’s why we call up the seniors, give them a gift and wish them well. It’s my chance to thank each of them individually for their leadership and for all they’ve done for the program,” said Johnson.