Music program is competing at Disneyland


A picture of the music that the orchestra is playing this year. Photo by Rachel Larson

This year is the first year since 2010 that the music program is going to be competing in Disneyland. From Apr. 28 to May 1, the symphonic band, orchestra, jazz band and chamber choir will be riding roller coasters, playing music.

Music Director Mr. Kris Harper has been preparing for the $600 trip all school year and is excited for the band.

“We are working hard to get prepared for the competition, even though it is a few months away,” Harper said. The students are practicing hard, practicing at home, playing as a full ensemble, and breaking off into sectionals, were a smaller group of similar instruments play together and practice parts that are unique to their section.

Along with World Strides Heritage Festival, Mr Harper puts together the trip. World Strides Heritage Festival coordinates most of the arrangement, including eating, hotels, the competition time, and the tickets to Disneyland. For the most part, the students and parents of the students pay for the trip. However, they do have fundraisers to help offset the costs. These fundraisers include a mattress sale, cookie dough sale, and carmel corn sale.

He hopes that the students will keep practicing and getting their work done so that they can do well at the Heritage Music Festival. Each group will come up and perform at Anaheim and a board of judges will evaluate them. Based on the score given, the band can earn one of three awards: Bronze, Silver, or Gold. Mr. Harper hopes that the band this year will get all gold.

The symphonic band will perform a piece called “Golden Sierra Reflection,” which is about the beauty of the Lake Tahoe region. The orchestra will play a piece called “Brook Green Suite,” which has three different parts. The jazz band already has practiced a wide variety of pieces which they can choose from and choir is reading some new pieces that they hope to have ready by competition.

The Disneyland trip is not new to junior tuba player Danielle Blankenship. She has already done this two times before and is excited to do it again.

“Last time I went to Southern California for a band trip was four years ago, [in] eighth grade. It was actually really fun,” Blankenship said. Blankenship got to hear other bands and see other programs from other schools, showing her what other people just like her were doing. The last time she went, her school, Spring View Middle School, got almost all gold.

Right now Blankenship is excited for the trip. Though she has solos, she feels prepared because of all the practice and preparation that her and the band is doing.

“The pieces this year are more difficult, giving a challenge to the students in the band. It is just what we need to grow,” Blankenship said.

On the other end, junior flute player Chirara Midulla has never done the Southern California trip before, nor been to Disneyland. Nevertheless, Midulla is looking forward to the competition.

“I think we will do well since we have practiced so much,” Midulla said.

Midulla is also excited to go to Disneyland for the first time. Not knowing what the park looks like, she is happy to go to the park for the first time with the symphonic band.

On a weekly bases, Midulla has been working hard to perfect her part in “Golden Sierra Reflection.” “I think ‘Golden Sierra Reflection’ has some very pretty parts,” said Midulla. 

The music program has been working hard all year for this, and they hope to do well on all the wonderful pieces.