Sunday, December 11, 2011

Oxford Schools have orchestra concert, improvement on display

    My sixth-grade daughter Lucy took part in the Oxford School District Orchestra's annual Christmas concert on Thursday, Dec. 8.
    The concert was really three concerts in one. First up was the Beginning Orchestra, made up mostly of 6th graders with a few 9th graders taking orchestra this year for the first time. Next up was the Intermediate Orchestra, made up of 7th and 8th graders. Last up was the High School Orchestra.
    The beginners started out by playing most or all of the songs they have done this semester. The first song was simply a one-string piece. They finished with Jingle Bells. You could really see the increase in complexity as the semester progressed. I've included a video below of the Beginner's penultimate piece, Ode to Joy. Oh, and if the camera seems to linger on a certain cello player, well that my prerogative.
    Next up was the Intermediate Orchestra. I've included just over a minute of their performance of Pacem Noel, a medley that includes The First Noel.
    Finally came the High School Orchestra. These kids were really doing some playing; they were truly outstanding. Their performance included a Christmas carol sing-along, and they ended with Fandango. Again I only filmed just over a minute of this. I regret not recording the whole piece, because when they finished it was a "wow" moment.
    I've posted three separate videos rather than making one long one. This is to allow those of you who just want to get a quick listen to each group to be able to do so without having to watch a five- or six-minute video. The difference in quality is pretty amazing, and you can see it by watching each clip for 10 or 15 seconds.
    The Oxford School District has a fine music program. The orchestra program is under the direction of Benji Wilson. The chorus is under the direction of Chris Brown. The Middle School band also does an outstanding job.
    Anyway, here's the clips for those of you who might want to take a peek:

Beginning Orchestra, Ode to Joy

video

7th & 8th Orchestra, Portion of Pacem Noel

video

High School Orchestra, Portion of Fandango (wish I had recorded all!)

video

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

For what it's worth, as you sat in the warm confines at Oxford, I stood nest to a propane heater on the concrete floor at Mack's Fish Camp on the Bouie(River) and watched Elvis impersonator Mike Russell perform his Elvis Christmas Show in the open.

Only diehard Elvis fans showed up, but, IMHO, Mike's better than SNL's Andy Kaufmann.