More than 450 students in music department delighted a packed house of local senior citizens Tuesday morning for the school's annual winter concert.
A performance for parents and other guests will take place Wednesday evening at 7 p.m. in the Conard auditorium.
The concert began with a candlelight processional, a tradition which has been in place for the past 50 years according to music teacher Scott Porter. The text and music to the processional – "The Welcome Canon" – was composed by former teacher Bill Lauer. The choirs spread throughout the aisles of the darkened auditorium, for a "medieval effect" as the room is lit by their (battery-operated) candles and the orchestra begins to play.
Five choirs, three bands, two jazz bands, and three orchestras entertained the audience with a repertoire of holiday music and other well known selections. "It's a big, collaborative effort of the entire music department – like a smorgasbord where everyone brings their best meal," Porter said.
Highlights include a performance by I Giovani Solisti, and a solo performance of Lalo's "Symphonie Espagnole" by Conard junior Tiana Piscitelli.
"The show is an hour and 45 minutes of sheer entertainment," said Porter, who added that the performance flows like a musical with groups taking their places on stage behind the curtain while a choir sings so time is not lost in transition.
There is no charge for admission on Wednesday night, but plan to arrive early because seats fill up quickly.
"It's really impressive, especially for anyone who's never seen it before," Porter said.