H. Suzie Lee
SMF schools orchestrated an evening of jazz featuring the Kimpton middle and high school jazz ensembles.
Four ensembles including Kimpton Jazz Ensemble, Jazz III, Jazz II, Jazz I performed 14 pieces at the high school auditorium on Jan 17, 2019.
Kimpton Jazz Ensemble started the concert with Sandra Sandman’s conduct by playing Work Song composed by “Nat Adderley”, arranged by White. Few students came up to the mic in front and performed their solos. Ensemble continued by “God Bless’ The Child” by Arthur Herzog Jr., arranged by Stitzel and “Splanky” by Neal Hefti, arranged by Phillippe.
36 Kimpton students came to the high school auditorium to perform with high school students.
High School Jazz III opened up their repertoire with “Four” by Miles Davis, arranged by Mark Taylor. Jazz III is the largest group out of all three high school ensembles; the group includes 25 members.
Within Greg Newman’s directions, they played “Angel Eyes” by Matt Dennis, arranged by Dave Wolpe.
“Angel Eyes” contained Tenor Sax feature; junior Katie Lowry and Sophomore Nathan Johnson played the feature.
Senior trumpeter Grace Rudman, freshman drummer Owen Goss also played their solos.
Jazz II began their ensemble by performing “Attitude Adjustment” by Larry Barton with conducting of Tom Lewis. They performed three more pieces including, “Birdland”, “Ballad for Basie”, “PaPacito”.
Senior tenor saxophone players Josh Blasko and Jay Galas performed their solos during the concert.
Junior trombonist Valerie McCauley, sophomore bassist Spring Biggs, freshman alto saxophonist Emily Blasko, senior trombonist Gannon Brown each performed their solos as well.
Jazz Band I was the last group of the concert within the direction of Greg Newman; the ensemble orchestrated “Ja-Da” by Sammy Nestico featuring a piano solo by Hyejin Suzie Lee.
They continued their program by “Apollo’s Reel” by Tom Molter including solos of senior trumpeter Jenson Kozar, alto saxophonist Josh Barbee, junior Ethan Bamberger. Next piece was “Ahunk Ahunk” by Thad Jones, arranged by Mike Carubia.
“Ahunk Ahunk” demonstrates the most funk bebop feeling; soloists were junior trumpeter Scott Kline, tenor saxophonist Maddie McLaughlin, senior trombonist Wyatt Martin, junior pianist Hyejin Suzie Lee.
“Mambo Over the Mountain” by Rick Hirsch ended Jazz I’s repertoire including the soloists Josh Barbee, sophomore drummer Blake Toburen, senior drummer Maclane Stebbins, Wyatt Martin.
Spring Jazz Concert with the guest artist is coming up on March 21, 7PM at high school auditorium; the concert is open and free to public.
Stow high school has been making many changes to the school so students feel more secure. These changes are supposed to help the student body as a whole in case of an emergency situation.
One of the additions to the school was an extra set of doors added by the athletic office. These are the doors students use when they are getting on and off the buses.
The main doors at the school are now a security entrance. Which makes it harder for visitors to get into the school if they are not students or faculty. Students have to buzz in and state a specific reason for entering the building.
Julie Archer’s desk was moved to be right by the front entrance of the school. Archer is a secretary who checks in parents who have items for students and signs kids out when they go to their cars. She now sits right by the doors to make sure people are checking in with her first.
Officer Barry Smith also has a new office this year after being moved to the former mailroom. He is now right next to the main entrance of the school.
Students and parents in Stow want to feel safer with the sudden increase in school shootings across the United States over the past year.
The updates that have been made to the school are security cameras and the IT system as well. Teachers also felt the need to be updated on safety measures and messages needed to be easily sent to them.
“We go through a number of exercised with teachers and plan to continue those drills this year. In some cases it’s what’s called a tabletop exercise where we think through different scenarios, other times we conduct drills to practice what we think through during the tabletop exercise,” Jeffrey Hartmann, the high school principal, said.
The school PA’s system became an even larger necessity with all the relevance it has in communicating quickly with the whole school in dire situations.
“PA system announcements to make it easier for staff to make emergency broadcasts, improvements in classroom door security,” Hartmann said.
Tom Bratten, the superintendent of Stow, also worked hard over the summer to make the school feel like a safer place.
“We have increased security camera coverage and all of our cameras are accessible to the police. We will continue to add more cameras this and next year, change out some security doors, and meet quarterly with the safety committee to discuss other improvements,” Bratten said.
Bratten and his team made it possible for us to have a larger police presence in the schools. The hope is that everyone feels protected at all times in Stow and that the schools stay out of harm’s way.
By H. Suzie Lee
Wind Ensemble, the high school band, performed a patriotic concert called ‘A Salute to Broadway’ with the choirs as well on May 5, at 7 p.m.
Starting with ‘Star Spangled Banner’ by Francis Scott Key, the Color Guard from Boy Scout Troop 273 held the flag during the piece. Also, the choir sang the lyrics with the band.
The concert continued with many selections of broadway songs such as ‘Give My Regards to Broadway from Little Johnny Jones’ by George M. Cohan, ‘Highlights from Phantom of the Opera’ by Andrew Lloyd Webber and ‘Mambo from West Side of Story’ by Leonard Bernstein featuring trumpet soloist Nick Lavy, class of 2018.
Next pieces were ‘Somewhere’ featuring trumpet soloist Kendall Miragliotta, class of 2018, 76 Trombones from The Music Man by Meredith Willson, ‘I Dreamed A Dream from Les Miserables’ arranged by Michael Brown featuring vocal soloist Anne Marie McCombs, class of 2018, and ‘Highlights from Wicked’ by Julie Davalia.
With SMFHS Vocal Jazz, the Jazz 1 band performed Jazz piece ‘Lullaby of Broadway’ by Luther Henderson. Vocal Jazz is a jazz choir team including Will Bender, Nick Ely, Anne Marie McCombs, Randi Mohr, Johnny Oliver, Emma Razor, Danny Schneider and Hanna Shull.
After an uplifting Jazz piece, the Concert Choir sang ‘Being Alive from Company’ by Stephen Sondheim.
Within the narration of Tom Stephan, former teacher of the high school, ‘Ask Not’ was performed.
Two more piece were performed with the Concert Choir: ‘An American Tribute’ by Douglas E. Wagner, ‘Salute to America’s Finest’ arranged by Paul Lavender.
Also, the concert honored those who have served or are currently serving the country.
Finally, the American Celebration concert ended with John Philip Sousa’s ‘Stars and Stripes Forever’ with the Concert Choir.
Auditorium was filled with many people from the community in Stow and has earned positive feedback as well.
Next upcoming concerts are the Spring Choir Concert on May 12, the Band Spring Concert on May 14 and the Band & Choir Memorial Day performance on May 28 at the Stow Cemetery.