By Hannah Jones, Alexandra Margelu and Madison Nualart
MAY 11, 2018
St. Thomas Aquinas High School’s (STA) Concert and Jazz Bands performed their last concert of the 2017-2018 school year on May 3, 2018. The Bienes Center for the Arts’ seats were full of parents, teachers, and classmates who anticipated an exciting evening of music performed by the Jazz and Concert Bands.
The concert started with the Jazz Band playing seven smooth songs that had everyone in the audience tapping their feet or bobbing their heads to the beat. It was an expert execution of these lively pieces. The students played with an abundance of soul that made it evident how much they truly enjoyed entertaining the audience. Before the Jazz Band performed their final selection, there was a pause to distribute awards to two hard working members. One was the Woody Herman Jazz Award which was created in 1988, shortly after Herman’s death, to honor outstanding jazz students. The award was presented to Alejandro Alvaro for his excellent work ethic and passion for music. Following this was the Louis Armstrong Award, which was inaugurated in 1974 with the consent of Armstrong’s widow, shortly after the artist died in 1971. The award honors an outstanding jazz musician at each high school and the STA recipient was Mario Pescatore.
The Concert Band then followed, with six tunes played to an upbeat marching tempo. The Disney selections sounded magical and showcased the students’ musical abilities. Before the second song began, Band Director Mr. Richard Bradford announced that trombone player, sophomore John Marciniak, would conduct A Welsh Rhapsody by Clare Grundman. Marciniak did an admirable job of leading the band.
With every concert or performance that takes place at the Bienes Center, an abundance of time and effort goes into the preparation and setting up. It takes hard work and dedication to execute these performances, and that’s exactly what the band did. Concert Band member Samantha Hernandez shared her experience with Raider Review, “We have been preparing for this concert since February to create a great performance for the audience. We are very proud of all the students who have worked hard and came together to create music.”