Fall Concerts at Delbarton

Yajur Sriraman, Arts Section Editor

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The last few weeks have been busy ones in the world of Delbarton Arts. The annual fall concert trio took place over the last two weeks, with the choral, orchestral, and instrumental groups all taking the stage at the FAC auditorium to display the repertoire they worked so hard on for months. The Chorus Concert was at 7pm on Thursday, November 10th.  It featured a capella group The Benedictones, liturgical group Arma Lucis, and Delbarton’s primary choral group, the Schola Cantorum. Considering the state soccer championship was that same night, there was quite a large turnout for the event. The evening started with The Benedictones, student-led by John Paciga (‘18), who showed off their barbershop-style songs, highlighted by solos from Paciga, Charlie Flanagan (‘21), Shan Rizwan (‘17), and Timmy Adami (‘17).  Arma Lucis, a 5-man group which sings liturgical works, took the stage next, directed by Chris Hatcher. The main event was the 34-man Schola Cantorum. They sang a fully memorized repertoire of six songs, ranging from German to pop.  The list of songs included, “An Die Musik”, “I Will Lift My Eyes”, “Praise Ye the Lord”, “Fields of Gold”, “Poor Man Lazarus”, and “If Ye Love Me”. Directed by Mr. David Blazier, they stole the show and capped off a brilliant choral concert.

The orchestral concert took place at 3pm on Sunday, November 13th. Since the orchestra is comprised mostly of non-Delbarton students, hordes of people not affiliated with Delbarton crowded the FAC on this pleasant Sunday afternoon. The Abbey Orchestra’s younger counterpart– The Young Abbey Orchestra– took the stage first, directed by Ms. Samantha Tomblin. Ms. Tomblin picked a variety of pieces designed to be “challenging, yet fun at the same time.” Pieces included “Mountain Chase”, “An Italian Elegy”, “Waltz from Sleeping Beauty”, and the up-tempo “Warrior Legacy”. Led by Mrs. Norma Davis, the Abbey Orchestra took on two of the most difficult pieces in the orchestral world– not just scholastically, but professionally. One piece lasted 5 minutes, while the other piece lasted about an hour. “The Marriage of Figaro Overture” was a quick piece, but included lots of technical precision, and really showed the hard work put in by the students. The 4-movement Beethoven Symphony No. 3 was a grueling, yet rewarding experience for all parties. At the end, the whole audience was roaring with applause, standing on their feet. Many guests left Delbarton amazed by the power of music they had just witnessed. Delbarton students Nicholas Brancatella (‘17, violin), James Monahan (‘19, violin), Yajur Sriraman (‘19, french horn), and Andrew Madonna (‘19, bass), represented Delbarton in the Abbey Orchestra.

Finally, the Instrumental Concert took place on Friday, November 18th, at 7:30pm. Seven different ensembles performed on the night on countless different instruments. First up was the Brass Ensemble, conducted by Mr. Gregory Devine. They played a slower song in Sarabande, followed by a lively song called “Songs of the Sea”. The Woodwind Ensemble, conducted by Mr. John di Egidio, performed three pieces next: Berr’s “Clarinet Duet”, “I’ve Got the World on a String”, and “Earl of Oxford’s March”. Two show-stopping solo performances ensued. Alex Luo (‘19, piano) performed a rigorous, challenging “Moment Musical no. 4” by Rachmaninoff, a piano composer known to be extremely difficult. Nicholas Gritz (‘21, piano) then performed “The Fountain of Acqua Paola” by Charles Griffes. The student-led Jazz Combo played one piece, “Pink and White” by Frank Ocean, which was arranged for combo by student leader Austin Terchek (‘17 baritone saxophone). Terchek, Nick Eichler (‘19 alto saxophone), Andrew Madonna (‘20, bass), Luo, and Norman Chen-Liaw (‘17 drums) made up the group. The Jazz Ensemble played four buoyant tunes that lightened up the atmosphere. Percussion Ensemble interjected with a beautiful, exciting rendition of “Back Roads to Medellin”, that had many people talking afterwards. Finally, the Wind Ensemble concluded the program with three pieces by composers of varying difficulty. It was a concert filled with variety, musicality, and talent–a recipe for success in the Delbarton arts.

On behalf of the Delbarton Arts Program, I’d like to offer a special thanks to Abbot Richard, Br. Paul, Mr. Ruebling, Mr. Blazier, the Delbarton Arts Council, and to the housekeeping and maintenance staff for making these concerts possible! A special shoutout to the stage crew led by Mr. Bodd, Amaan Chaudhry (‘17) and Guy Adami (‘19). With the help of all of these people, as well as all of Delbarton’s talented musicians, the arts program is in excellent shape for the rest of the year, and years to come. The next concert will be the biggest musical performance of the year–the Delbarton Christmas Concert! ALL of the aforementioned groups will be performing in one concert, making this a must-see event! It is on Sunday, December 18th at 7pm in the FAC. This concert is always sold out, so it is imperative to buy tickets in advance to ensure seating. Tickets are required and can be purchased on delbarton.org/music.

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