Sleigh bells ring, are you listening?: CHS band performs winter concert

The CHS band held their annual winter concert last night, Dec. 15. at the CHS auditorium. This performance combined all four bands, plus an exclusive performance from the percussion class and two small ensembles. Under the direction of Mr. Cheyne and Mr. Worley, as well as some student conductors, the performance included 15 full-length pieces.

The evening began with the Concert Band, a class made up of majorly freshmen and new band members. They performed “Ash Lawn Meadows”, a majorly low-brass piece highlighted with the tambourine, “Carpathian Sketches”, and “A Celtic Christmas”, a piece weaving Celtic themes with “Deck the Halls”.

“We have five to six beginners onstage who worked very hard to get caught up at a fast rate.”

– Mr. Worley

Following the Concert Band, a small ensemble performed “The Incredibles”. This small ensemble was completely student-organized, and the group gathered before and after school to perfect the piece. Belle Stills, junior, conducted the group all clad in black superhero masks.

Their piece began with a lively introduction as Belle Stills and the ensemble members quoted the famous Frozone-supersuit bit from the Pixar movie. The ensemble members played the piece with energy, and entertained several of the crowd members, swaying and dancing as they performed.

Above: The performers of “The Incredibles” – Belle Stills, Evan Walters, Andrew Haynes, Nick Whyte, Joanna Ojo, Kaylin Dills, Donny Cucci, Will DeMartini, Jesse Young, Drew Brannum. Some performers not pictured.

The Symphonic Band, under the direction of Mr. Cheyne, performed “Escape from the Deep”, a piece that tells the story of a sunken World War Two submarine, inspired by a book of the same topic. The Symphonic Band played two more pieces, “Our Kingsland Spring” and “Celtic Bell Carol”, which mixed the classic “Carol of the Bells” with a Celtic twist.

A second student-ran small ensemble served as an intermission between the Symphonic Band and the Wind Symphony. This group performed “Adagio in A-Flat Major”, a slow and soulful piece without use of percussion.

The Wind Symphony followed the ensemble and played “Encanto”, “Olde English Christmas”, and “Faeries”, a jazzier and upbeat rendition of Tchaikovsky’s “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy”. This band performed very well; “Encanto” was a crowd favorite.

The percussion class performed “Toboggan”, a gleeful piece about a toboggan ride. Kat Williams accompanied the percussion on the guitar.

To close out the night, the mastery band or Wind Ensemble performed “Hounds of Spring”, “Ye Banks and Braes O’ Bonnie Doon”, and of course, the classic band piece “Sleigh Ride”. Several statement Santa hats and reindeer antlers added color to the band.

Overall, the audience was full of excited parents, staff, and students, and each band received a standing ovation and cheers from the audience. Congratulations on another great performance, Band of Warriors!

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