Westwood Horizon

Orchestra Presents Diverse Music at Fall Concert

By Keana Saberi

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Orchestra showcased their classical pieces of music at their traditional Fall Concert at The Performing Arts Center on Thursday, Oct. 4. The Camerata, Concert, Philharmonic, and Symphony orchestras were all under the lead of Director Joshua Thompson and Associate Director Justin Anderson.

The students were all prepping their instruments before the concert started. Everyone was in a state of nervous giddy, but they were thrilled to showcase the pieces that they had worked on since school started.

“I’m really excited for the audience to hear the Symphony’s performance of the Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis,” Anna Wicker ‘20 said, “because it’s two different orchestras plus a quartet solo, and I think it’s something the audience doesn’t normally hear. I think it will be really cool for [the audience] to experience, and I’m really excited to play this piece.”  

Before the first orchestra was to perform, students, family, and friends alike gathered in the lobby with some of the school’s former faculty in attendance.

“It’s absolutely nostalgic coming back to see all those faces from a different perspective,” former orchestra director Mrs. Susan Williams said. “Honestly, you’re gonna make me cry. I love the new director, Mr. Thompson, and I had the honor and opportunity to work with Justin Anderson the last two years I taught. Whenever I come back, it’s like a family reunion.”

The show itself displayed many varied and elaborate pieces from composers Ralph Vaughan Williams and Giuseppe Verdi, along with others. Camerata first performed three songs including a lively work called Anvil Chorus from Il Trovatore by Giuseppe Verdi, which displayed a dramatic and thrilling tone to start the night.  

Concert performed a lyrical piece entitled Nabucco Overture by Giuseppe Verdi as well, which highlighted all the violas, violins and one bass. Philharmonic played an interesting and complex piece by Ralph Vaughan Williams named Five Variants of Dives and Lazarus, which spotlighted Junna Castel ‘20 and William Yu ‘20, both of whom are principal players in their sections. They also performed Hoedown from Rodeo by Aaron Copland, with solos played by Chelsea Zhang ‘22 and AJ Darwin ‘22.  Finally, Symphony played three elegant pieces with the inclusion of Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis, which elevated the whole performance with its busy, yet fanciful composition.

“I was really pleased with the fall concert,” Mr. Thompson said, “because we played with all four orchestras harder music than we did last fall just to see if they would rise to the occasion, and they did.”

Symphony Orchestra will have their next performance on Friday, Oct.12, separate from the other groups. The other three orchestras will have a separate Winter Concert on Tuesday, Nov. 27.

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