Breaking News
The Student News Site of Northwood High School

The Northwood Howler

The Student News Site of Northwood High School

The Northwood Howler

The Student News Site of Northwood High School

The Northwood Howler

Northwood’s festival feats

Aya Takase-Songui
JUBILANT JAZZ: Senior Luis Maldonado solos over “Strut” on his guitar at the IUSD Jazz Festival.

The IUSD music festivals start just like any other: the lights dim as the conductor struts onto the stage and lifts their baton. However, you sit forward in anticipation, because this time, the concerts are performed by your fellow peers, and you’re excited to see them play.

Northwood’s top music ensembles recently had the opportunity to perform at three different IUSD festivals, each with their own genres and styles. Only one question remains: how well did they perform?

The IUSD Band Festival at Woodbridge High School on March 19 featured a performance by Wind Symphony under the direction of music director Benjamin Case and student teacher Cole Quizon. They showcased Leonard Bernstein’s rousing “Overture to Candide” and John Mackey’s beautifully haunting “Aurora Awakes,” bringing an end to the fantastic concert night.

Many performers commented that they appreciated the chance to listen to other high schools, as it presented a fantastic learning opportunity for them to listen and appreciate the work of their peers.

“It was great for many of us to see how the other performing ensembles are tackling their own pieces in ways that we can apply to our own group,” flute section leader junior Michael Lei said. “It meant a lot to me to be able to perform in one of the finest concert halls in the Orange County area.”

Philharmonic Orchestra, also under the direction of Case, gave their performance at the IUSD Orchestra Festival at Woodbridge on March 26. Performing “Introduction and Allegro, Op. 47” by Edward Edgar, the piece featured an impressive string quartet including concertmaster violinist Lucas Nguyen, violinist Anna Cho, violist Manny Zhou and cellist Tiancheng Dong accompanied by the rest of the ensemble. The conversational melody began with a slow introduction before gradually transitioning into a brisk section filled with drama and tension, building up to a meaningful and worthwhile grand finale.

“It wasn’t necessarily how well we played accurately,” Nguyen said. “It was more about how well we came together. I think this piece helped us come together as a group, and we really improved so many parts of our musicality just because it took so much work to get it together.”

The final riveting performance was given by Jazz I at Portola High School on March 27. Jazz I performed the funky “Strut” by Rick Hirsch, the thoughtful “Franz” by Kim Richmond and the upbeat Latin piece “Esprit” by Jeff Holmes. In all of the pieces, Jazz I made sure to punch their articulations, balance their dynamics and blend their sounds between sections. These details differentiate Jazz I from any other ensemble group at Northwood.

Students who are interested in supporting the arts have several ways to do so; the most notable way is to go to concerts in person. Northwood’s music program will continue to perform in upcoming concerts such as Jazz at the Oak on May 17 and the Pops concerts from May 21-23.

“It’s never too late to start getting into music,” french horn player sophomore Mason Vu said. “If you want to come, then just show up; a lot of the concerts are free or they’re pretty cheap.”

Leave a Comment
About the Contributors
Timothy Shin
Timothy Shin, Staff Writer
Tim is a Staff Writer on the Northwood Howler. You’ll catch him in his free time hanging around his favorite clubs (like Ecclesia, Aviation Club and Thrive Club), practicing the trumpet for the marching band, and ranting on how Oppenheimer was the greatest film of the decade.
Aya Takase-Songui
Aya Takase-Songui, Photo Editor
Aya Takase is the Photo Editor for The Howler, who claims to like horror films but as of now has only watched 3. Despite coming from a long line of professional gardeners, she lacks a green thumb and has killed every household plant she touches.

Comments (0)

All The Northwood Howler Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *