Looking back at the Fall of 2018
It is hard to believe that we are now heading into February. A lot has happened in the last five months. All told, over 30+ performances by our musicians! Let us review.
Pony Pep Band
The Pony Pep Band is always our first ensemble out of the gate in the fall. This years ensemble, lead by Seniors Erin Bloom, Evan Dybvig, and Anna Novalany led the Fight Song at Freshman orientation, supported the Ponies at home football games, collaborated with the Stillwater AM Rotary and Boutwell’s Landing for the Halloween Parade and followed the Boys Soccer, Girls Soccer and Girls Volleyball teams to the state tourney. This winter, they have played for Girls Basketball, Girls Hockey and Boys Hockey. To date, we have played 20 different times for Pony Activities! The first Boys Basketball game comes up soon if the polar vortex lets anyone out of their house again! Way to go Pep Band!
Jazz Xtets and Jazz Bands
The jazz bands began rehearsal in mid September and have traveled to the Lawrence jazz festival for clinics in early November and were followed by performances with college ensembles from the University of Northern Illinois and University of Wisconsin Eau Claire. The Jazz Band and Stillwater Combo closed out the annual Winter Concert. Recently, the Stillwater Jazz Band (before school) began rehearsal on Thursdays before school. We are gearing up for the Retired Teachers Sweetheart Ball on February 9th and the Stillwater Jazz Festival on February 12th.
The Stillwater Bands opened our performance year with two wonderful (and sold out) concerts! Thank you to everyone who made these first concerts a success. VIVA LA VIDA!!
Stillwater Band Festival
The Wind Symphony performed with all the 5th grade and 8th grade band students at the Stillwater Band Festival on November 6. Many thanks to Eric Van Scoy, Principal of Stillwater Middle School, and former band director, for serving as our narrator for the 5th graders “First Performance”! We look forward to seeing them at SAHS in four years!
Thank you to Emily Fjestad, Tyler Clark, Josh Framke, Nick Eischens, Andrew Craft, Josh Dupree and Jack Wallace who provided the ceremonial music for the Veteran’s Day Ceremony on November 11th at the Stillwater Veterans Memorial. We always love to honor the sacrifice our our community’s veterans who have served in our armed forces.
Holiday Band Concerts and Winter Concerts
The Symphonic Band, Concert Band, Wind Ensemble and Percussion Ensemble performed two holiday concerts on December 2nd. Wonderful performances by all groups culminated in a giant performance of the Brazilian Bell Carol!
The Stillwater Wind Symphony opened the annual SAHS Winter Concert with a fantastic performance of Alfred Reed’s Russian Christmas Music. The Jazz Ensemble then closed out the concert with 4 holiday favorites. Three wonderful concerts featuring our top ensembles atSAHS.
Our Orchestral Winds (made up of musicians from the Stillwater Wind Symphony) joined our Concert Orchestra performing Overture to “Ruslan and Ludmilla” by Glinka. They are awesome. They followed that up with a wonderful performance of Bizet’s Carmen, and Anderson’s Sleigh Ride at the Winter Concert
The following Stillwater Band students were named to the SEC All Conference Band and Orchestra!
Paula Burgos, Senior Bassoonist, SEC Honor Orchestra
John Franklin, Junior Percussionist, SEC Honor Band
Eleanor Grace, Sophomore Trumpet, SEC Honor Band
Maria Kratz, Senior Flautist, SEC Honor Band
Amy Longtin, Senior Flutist, SEC Honor Orchestra
Jessica Matteson, Senior Flutist, SEC Honor Orchestra
Katlyn Matteson, Senior Clarinetist, SEC Honor Band
Thomas Meyer, Senior Oboist, SEC Honor Orchestra
Sherilyn Patterson, Sophomore Oboist, SEC Honor Orchestra
Cecelia Romportl, Senior Clarinetist, SEC Honor Orchestra
John Schaeffer, Sophomore Trumpet, SEC Honor Orchestra
Allison Shaw, Senior Flutist, SEC Honor Band
Joe Weckwerth, Senior Trombone, SEC Honor Band
The following Stillwater Band students are performing in this year’s MEA All State Ensembles!
Amy Longtin, Senior Flutist, All State Orchestra
Thomas Meyer, Senior Oboist, All State Orchestra
Cece Romportl, Senior Clarinetist, All State Concert Band
Hannah Sween, Senior Flutist, All State Symphonic Band
Chamber Music Final
Students in the Wind Ensemble performed in chamber ensembles for their final exam this year. Each student worked together to prepare a piece of music with their section (and minimal teacher help) to perform for their peers at the final. Students were also tasked with creating their own program notes for the performance. Good preparation led to fine performances from all!
We have completed our annual SAHS Bands Solo Festival! Students worked to prepare their own solo and perform for a music judge for a score and rating. For many of our 9th graders it was the first time they had performed a solo! Our top 9th graders will be invited to perform at our Freshman Honors Recital on February 24th at 3:00 and 4:00 PM. Our top 10th, 11th and 12th graders have been invited to perform at the MSHSL Solo and Ensemble Contest on April 13th (note this event was rescheduled within the last two weeks). Way to go everyone!