MCHS presents: Classics Night


Anna-Lisse Lenard, Reporter

This Michigan City band department put on a performance this Thursday, March 8 at 7:00. The concert was called “Classics Night” and, hence the name, featured classics in many different forms.

There are three different bands: Cadet Band (beginner), Concert Band (intermediate), and Symphonic Band (advanced). They played an estimated, three to five songs each and were all directed by, Frank Gast.

The Cadet Band started off the night. With about 30 members, they started with two classical pieces, “Abandoned Treasure Hunt” and “Shenandoah”. The band then switched over to two more well-known pieces: “John Williams Trilogy”, including themes from “Jurassic Park, “Schindler’s List”, and “Star Wars”; and “Chant and Tribal Dance”.

Following the Cadet Band’s performances was the Concert Band. They had  fewer members and played the same amount of songs. The first was “Joy” which was a short but popular piece typically played by high school bands. After that, they played a chorale-like song, “Air For Band”. They followed it up with a medley of many songs called “Instant Concert” and a classic Russian piece, “Moscow 1941”.

Finally, the Symphonic Band performed five songs. They started off with a lively song called “Prairie Dances”. Things took a classical turn, and they played and clapped an Italian song from the 1500’s called “Fa Una Canzona”.

“Heaven’s Light” was next, which was a song filled with solos – especially flute and clarinet – and it was dedicated to a girl who passed away in a car crash; she was a trumpet player in the Chesterton band. The song was about celebrating the life of those who have passed.

After that was a fun song called “Cartoon Symphony”, which included themes from popular old cartoons such as “Pink Panther”, “Animaniacs”, “The Simpsons”, and more. Lastly, the group played “Arrows”, whose tempo was often related to war, then morphed into jazz, then a short melody, and finally the theme from the beginning again.

Last year, there was not a Classics Night due to lack of leadership in the band department. However, the new leadership in the department has turned band around for the better. Improved sound and more diverse music selections make the concerts more enjoyable for the audience and beneficial to the musicians’ growth.

The next step for the department is to perform at ISSMA Ensemble, a music competition where bands and choirs get judged on their playing and sight reading abilities. The advanced group will be going to this in mid April and will be playing three of the selections from this concert at that competition.

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