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Community orchestra gives kids a chance

This Sunday, the Summit Community Orchestra presents the talents of two Summit Middle School students, as well as local musicians. For almost a decade, the organization has been highlighting remarkable students.

“The showcase, featuring our outstanding students, provides the opportunity for the top performers to play a solo or concerto with an orchestra,” said conductor Kenneth Evans. “The students realize how significant and important they are, even at their young age. Our two soloists have both told me how much they love classical music and how excited they are to play with the orchestra.”

This spring’s concert gives middle-school students Kaeli Subberwal and Ani Casabonne a rare chance to shine.



“Both young musicians demonstrated a high level of musicianship, from technique to their phrasing,” said Jessica Moidel, one of the judges for the showcase. “Their passion for the music during the competition and professional stage presence set them above the rest.”

Subberwal will perform the third movement of the Haydn Piano Concerto in C.



“My favorite aspect of this piece is also probably the most difficult for me,” Subberwal said. “I love the trills in the piece, the quick flourishes that add life and vivacity to the music, but it is a challenge for me to get them to sound well timed and even.”

She has practiced the piece at length with her piano teacher, Adrienne Sielaff. And, after all the hard work, she’s thrilled to hear it enhanced by a larger orchestra.

“It’s been an honor to work with Dr. Evans and the members of the orchestra, and I’ve really enjoyed having a glimpse into the inner workings of a real orchestra,” she said. “I hope that this opportunity will give me a better understanding of how to work and communicate with a group of musicians bigger than the chamber groups I have played with in the past. I know I’ve already gained an appreciation for the difficult job done by the orchestra and the conductor, which seems so effortless to those of us out in the audience. More than anything, I think I’ve gained a greater appreciation of, and respect for, the music.”

Casabonne will perform the first movement of the Bach Violin Concerto No. 1 in A minor. Though she has played in an orchestra before, this is her first opportunity to be a soloist.

“It is exciting to play this piece with the orchestra because it is a step towards my goal of becoming a professional musician,” Casabonne said. “With help from Dr. Evans and the other musicians, I have gained valuable experience playing with orchestra accompaniment and hope to be more confident when playing in front of an audience.”

She loves her piece – particularly the parts with sixteenth notes, because she “likes to play fast.” Her biggest challenges involved not only memorizing the piece, but also learning the dynamics, rhythm and phrasing with her teacher, Nancy Feiner.

“I have been extremely impressed with the level of preparation, musicality and polish achieved by these two young ladies,” said orchestra co-president Erika Krainz. “Their dedication to their music studies is an inspiration to the adult players in the orchestra, and we are so pleased to be able to work with them and provide a venue for the end result of their hard work.

The spring concert also includes Respighi’s “Ancient Airs and Dances,” Bizet’s “L’Arlesienne” and Verdi’s “Triumphal March.”


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