Band Ushers in the Holiday Season with Annual Winter Concert


The symphonic band stands as the audience applauds at the end of their performance. They played Rejoice the Season! and Silent Night.

Sophia Sartor, Heritage Section Editor

The Westwood Band brought holiday spirit and cheer to the Westwood cafetorium on Wednesday, Dec. 7 with their annual winter concert. All four bands performed, putting the show together in only a few weeks. Students wore ugly sweaters, Santa hats, and other festive holiday attire to perform, a winter concert tradition.

“The concert was really nice,” Cynthia Liu ‘26 said. “Wearing winter attire for the concert was a lot less formal and a lot more fun than [our] middle school [concerts].”

As family and friends entered Westwood to attend the concert, they were greeted by a flute choir playing various holiday songs. The group was composed of flutists from each of the four bands and met before and after school to prepare. 

“Flute choir was really tough at times for me because it was hard to get up early [to rehearse],” Helen Zhang ‘26 said. “I think I was quite satisfied with our final performance though, for being student-run.” 

The concert opened with two pieces by Concert Band, A Joyous Christmas by Randall Standridge and a playful piece titled Minka’s Sleigh Ride by Pierre La Plante that had the audience bopping along.

“I particularly enjoyed playing Minka’s Sleigh Ride for two reasons, as I really liked playing all the staccato notes and I felt that the ending where we yelled ‘hey!’ was a very fun way to end the piece and capture the audience’s attention,” Neel Chaudhari ‘26 said.

Symphonic band took the stage next, performing a rendition of the soft and melodious song Silent Night by Sean O’Loughlin and a sparkling, merry piece appropriately titled Rejoice the Season! by Rob Romeyn.

“I felt like [the concert] was super rushed, the way we put it together so fast and with so little time, but I still feel like we pulled through and it turned out really well,” Tharini Murugananth ‘25 said.

The third band to play was Wind Symphony, performing The Good Earth by Vince Oliver, a piece inspired by a poem and its message of world peace. They ended their performance with the upbeat Santa’s Journey by Roy Kaighin, a take on Joy to the World.

“I really liked The Good Earth, I thought it was really different and had a nice inspirational message,” Liu said. “I was really surprised I got to play a solo [for the piece] but really happy.”

Wind Ensemble concluded the concert with three pieces, beginning with their presentation of the George Washington Bicentennial March by Sousa/Fennell, which they will perform at the upcoming UIL Concert Band Evaluation. They followed with a piece composed of a medley of different Christmas songs; A Rhapsody on Christmas Carols by Claude T. Smith. Finally, they played the classic piece Sleigh Ride by Leroy Anderson, ending the winter concert with a crescendo.

“I greatly enjoyed all the music we played since Christmas music is so full of spirit and always brings me joy,” Murugananth said. “I absolutely loved this concert and thought it was a great way to spread the holiday cheer.”