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Middle school musicians to perform tonight

Free concert showcases expanding music program

GREENFIELD — An expanding music program at Greenfield Middle School will showcase student talent at its winter concert, tonight at 7 p.m. at the school.

Nearly 200 middle school students from fourth grade to seventh, including attendees of the Math and Science Academy, will perform as a part of five different musical groups.

The largest group, the middle school’s “blast-off band,” will kick off the concert with three songs: “Jingle Bells,” “Lightly Row” and “Jolly Old Saint Nick.”

The 110-member band includes beginner sixth- and seventh-graders, as well as about 100 fourth- and fifth-graders, said Maria Scotera, who is in charge of the middle school band programs.

Half of Greenfield’s fourth- and fifth-graders are in the band, said Scotera, making this year’s band the largest participation she has seen in her four years as director.

Later in the show, some of those musicians will perform in a concert band, alongside advanced older students from the sixth and seventh grades. The 60-member band will play a rendition of Michael Sweeney’s “Fanfare and March.”

Then, two other smaller groups will perform: a 30-member wind ensemble and a 12-member jazz band.

It is the jazz band’s first year — part of a mission by Scotera to provide students with as many different musical opportunities as possible. A flute ensemble is in the works.

“For children to have a full musical experience, they should be practicing things solo, in a large ensemble and ... in a small ensemble,” said Scotera.

The wind ensemble will play holiday favorites “Frosty the Snowman” and “Let It Snow,” as well as “My Heart Will Go On” from “The Titanic.”

The jazz band will play “Rock Around The Clock,” a 1950s hit made famous by Bill Haley and His Comets.

Chorus performing first show

Right between the “blast-off” and concerts bands will be four songs from the middle school chorus, a group of 28 musicians that are putting on their first major concert.

“It’s their first time getting up on stage and singing,” said first-year choral director Elizabeth Markofski. “They really have demonstrated so much courage and enthusiasm.”

Students have been learning how to sing using different dynamics, working on their stage presence and even picking up some dance choreography, said Markofski.

Tonight, they will perform “Snow Day,” “Winter Wonderland,” “Tama Tu” and “Shooting Star.”

Then the chorus, and all of the band students, will join together for the grand finale: a performance of the Latin canon, “Dona Nobis Pacem.”

Students will perform in front of their peers this afternoon in a dress rehearsal for tonight’s show.

There is no admission for the evening concert, but donations are always accepted, the music directors said.

You can reach Chris Shores at:
cshores@recorder.com
or 413-772-0261, ext. 264

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