The winter holidays are around the corner, and that means the Fine Arts department is preparing for their winter festival. All three music department programs are coming together on Dec. 13th and 14th to perform their annual winter celebration concert. This festive event is run by choir director Deb Utley, orchestra director Elizabeth Bennett, and band director Henry Kappler. This year, the showcase will be held in the theater, unlike the previous three years, when it was hosted in the gym.
“The most awesome part is that it is all three parts of our musical departments: band, choir, and orchestra,” choir director Debra Utley said.
This year, the theme of the concert is covering music from “Elf,” both the musical version and parts of the movie. Meanwhile, the directors are still including some of the pieces that have been performed in years past, such as “Hava Nagila” and “Sleigh Ride” which are enjoyable for both the audience and student performers alike, which is why they are always brought back.
“We are playing ‘Sleigh Ride again’,” junior Evelina Laverd said. “That is a tradition that we do every single year.”
Another favorite from the music department, featuring the choir, is a particular Jewish folk song. Due to its popularity, it will be featured for the third consecutive year.
“We have ‘Hava Nagila ‘which is a favorite of the singers,” Utley said. “It is probably their favorite song to perform all year.”
After the performance, young children, and their parents, have the opportunity to do holiday activities. This is another key event which is also popular post-concert activity as it has attracted younger families with children who might not be in high school yet.
“A lot of kids come, and, after the concert, there is coloring, and even an instrument petting zoo where they can try out the different instruments,” Laverd said.
Children will also have the chance to meet Santa Claus, and take pictures with him and the students who are dressed up as elves.
This is a special event because of the unique environment you are in. For instance, junior Ruth Ramos said that audience members are not just singing a number of various genres and pieces, you are blending it into one big show. With the characters and elements of storytelling, you really get a feel for the warmth and togetherness of their music.
“This concert is similar to a musical because people get characters instead of just a vocal arrangement,” Ramos said.
According to Ramos, with the holiday’s coming around this is a perfect experience to immerse yourself with the music, and connect with the winter festivities around you. It can bring joy to everyone’s face, and really make this time of year even more special.
“I hope [the audience] takes away the feel of togetherness, the feeling of community and unity through the music,” Ramos said.