Student Talent Reigns at Winter Concerts
Continued from cover
The Vernon School’s 6th Grade Jazz Band, under the baton of Mr. Joe Devassy, opened the concert series at Oyster Bay High School, Dec. 5, with a fun holiday piece, You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch. The evening also featured the Intermediate Band, led by music teacher Ms. Lauren Macy, the 5th and 6th Grade Chorus, under the direction of Mr. Louis Costidis and accompanied by Mrs. Elinor Zayas, and the Advanced Band, which brought Mr. Devassy back to the stage to lead students in pieces such as Dance of the Tumblers from The Snow Maiden.
The next evening, the 7th and 8th Grade Jazz Band, under the baton of Mr. Michael Giannetta, set the mood with the rhythmic Love is Here to Stay. And a show-stopping performance of Electricity, by the 7th and 8th Grade Concert Band, featured complete darkness followed by a sequence of flashing lights to underscore the piece. The Symphonic Band, conducted by Mr. Matthew Sisia, presented Flourish of the Wind Band, Three Ayres from Gloucester and Psalm 46.
The following morning, under the direction of Ms. Brenda Murphy, youngsters delighted audiences as the kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grade classes sang a selection of holiday favorites, such as Up on the Housetop, Dreidel Song and Let it Snow! Each 2nd grade class performed with percussion instruments, showcasing what they learned through the Orff method. The approach teaches children about music through a combination of singing, dancing, acting and the use of percussion instruments, such as xylophones, maracas, tambourines and bells. All the 2nd grade classes sang together for the finale.
Next were performances by the 7th and 8th Grade Chorus and the 9th-12th Grade Concert Choir, both accompanied by Mrs. Zayas on piano. The former dazzled the audience with Barbra Streisand’s version of Jingle Bells and an Isreali folk song, Hine Ma Tov, while the latter performed a Spanish song, En Silencio and ended with a moving version of Amazing Grace.
At Vernon School, the 3rd and 4th Grade Concert featured jingle bell necklaces, a dance from the Disney classic, Frozen, and “snow” thrown into the air to celebrate the season.
The series ended with the Oyster Bay High School Wind Ensemble, conducted by Mr. Mathew Sisia, which introduced the world premiere of a newly composed piece by Dr. Zachary Cairns entitled Wind Down, consisting of quick tempos in the beginning that slow down as the song progresses. With the theme of “Joy” and a message of support for the LGBTQ+ community, the Chamber Singers, led by Ms. Kylie Mullins and accompanied by Mr. Miles Massicotte on piano, opened with Joy to the World, then transitioned into the hauntingly beautiful Take Your Joy by LGBTQ+ composer Ms. Eve Beglarian that illustrated the pain of childbirth and the exhaltation of giving birth to new life. Their final piece, A Song of Joys, composed by David Dickau from the poem A Song of Joys by Long Island’s own Walt Whitman, hints of the writer’s issues with his own sexuality. The Jazz Ensemble, conducted by Mr. Matthew Sisia, closed the evening on a high note with Soul Man, which featured a short solo from every member of the ensemble.
OBHS Winter Concert I, II & III
Vernon 3rd & 4th Grade Concert
Vernon 5th & 6 th Grade Concert