Calvert Music Festival


Madison Conner, Contributor

On February 26, 27, and 28 the Calvert High School Music Departments, Choir, Band and Orchestra, participated in the 2019 Music Festival. They were each graded on sight reading, rhythmic and melodic, and performance.  

Festival was split into three days, one for each department. For each class, Festival is not is not as festive as it sounds. It is a performance assessment to grade each school on their skill as a music ensemble.  

On February 26, the Calvert High School Concert Choir, directed by Mrs. Kelly Combs, received perfect scores in sight-reading and performance, with the pieces Muusika by Pärt Uusberg, Famine Song by Vida, and Bonse Aba by Victor C. Johnson. 

Also conducted by Mrs. Combs, Chamber Choir received perfect scores in sight reading and performance with the pieces, Un Cavalier di Spanga by Francesco Santacroce Patavino, The Turtle Dove, an English Folk Song, and Non Nobis, Domine (Not to Us, O Lord) by Rosephanyhe 

 The members of each choir have been working hard to convey spirituality and transcendence through their music.  

 I feel that the biggest asset to our success was the ability for each person to find something in our songs that they could relate to their own life thereby increasing the empathy they feel for people of different cultures and in different situations. The genuine, expressive delivery from our choir members brought some audience members to tears,” said Mrs. Combs. 

 On February 27, the Calvert High School Wind Ensemble, conducted by Mr. Demetri Bedel, has been working since early December on the pieces Perthsire Majesty by Samuel R. Hazo, and Chorale and Shaker Dance by John Zdechlick. They received a two for their performance and sight-reading score. 

“The difficulty grade on Chorale and Shaker Dance is higher than any of the students have played before, and their hard work and dedication was exemplified in the performance. The Wind Ensemble also had a superior rating in the sight reading, which is a testament to the players’ attention to detail in the music they perform, said Mr. Bedel.  

On February 28, the Calvert High School Orchestra, conducted by Dr. Cheryl Blockland, also received perfect scores in sight-reading and performance of the pieces America’s Cup by Alan Lee Silva, Marche Slav by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, and A Riverside Celebration by Brian Balmages. The students have been working hard to perfect their pieces and earn their perfect scores.  

“Individual practice, dedication of the students, and outstanding student leaders were assets to being successful at festival, said Dr. Blockland 

Calvert High School Concert Choir, Chamber Choir and Orchestra will soon seek further success with their pieces at the State Music Festival later this year.