The Summit High School orchestra, symphonic, concert, and jazz bands join forces Wednesday to present their winter instrumental music concert, taking place from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the high school. The concert will feature many different musical styles, concluding with a grand finale performance of film music from "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory."
Approximately 100 students have been rehearsing all semester for the concert.
"We have spent a lot of time on rhythm and dance this semester, including learning how dance influences different styles of music," said Linda Shea, director of instrumental music. "The focus has been swing dance and world music - such as the group from Ghana that taught us to dance."
In addition to the instrumental music program, Summit High offers two choirs directed by Cathie Hill, who also teaches guitar and piano classes.
"We are able to do this because we are supported by a complete middle school program, including sixth-, seventh- and eight-grade bands, orchestra and choirs," Shea said, applauding Mark Koob for the band feeder program, which ensures the proficiency of woodwind, brass and percussion students in accordance with the high school curriculum and state standards. "Mark Clark does the same with the strings and Donna Clark for the choir," she said.
Shea settled on music from "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" while attending the Texas Music Educators Conference in San Antonio. "I am constantly looking for music that all of our students can perform together (strings, winds, percussion) and it is especially fun to perform medleys from movie soundtracks, since that is where you find some of today's most talented composers," she said. "Amongst the 1,000 exhibits I found this piece. Turns out it's perfect because it's fun and familiar."
Several members of this year's high school concert band have been rehearsing and performing with Summit Concert Band, the community band that rehearses at the high school on Thursday nights. "This year's concert band is the best I've had here at Summit High School," Shea said. "The students are constantly admiring each other as they go into one another's classes to rehearse for the grand finale. ... They are a very polite and friendly group of students and I am very proud of them."
The orchestra has a surprise in store for Wednesday's concert, once again, and organizers are hoping for a big turnout. Admission is free and the concert takes place from 6:30-8:30.