The Town of Webb school’s instrumental music instructor Greg Clark and his students are going full tilt through the end of this school year with several concerts, events and performances planned.
On Saturday, April 27, over thirty students will travel to Watertown High School for a New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) Solo Festival. Students have prepared individually challenging pieces of music, and will be performing them for adjudicators.
“This is always one of the best ways to challenge our strongest players,” Clark said. “Unlike previous years, we will be taking some Inlet Common School students with us, with their teacher, Miss Caitlyn Goodwin.”
Adjudicators at NYSSMA festivals grade students on a scale of 0-28, with 28 being a perfect score. They also give students constructive criticism, according to Goodwin. “It’s a very positive experience which promotes musical independence and lends to improved musicianship,” she said.
Goodwin teaches individual instrumental lessons to Inlet students on Thursday afternoons and conducts ensemble days monthly.
She acknowledged Principal Chris Holt and Inlet School Board members, whose support has resulted in the Inlet school becoming a NYSSMA member this year.
Clark and the Junior Band will be on a trip to Washington, D.C., from Thursday through Sunday, May 2 to 5.
“Students have been raising funds for this trip for two years, and it promises to be an outstanding experience,” Clark said.
The trip will include a concert by the students at Viewmont Mall in Pennsylvania, a stint at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and tours of a plethora of sites from the Library of Congress and Supreme Court to Gettysburg, Museums of Natural and American History, the Holocaust Meusem, various memorials and the National Zoo.
On Tuesday, May 7, the Junior Band will perform their spring concert.
This show will feature Town of Webb students, grades 5 to 8, as well as Inlet band students from grades 4 to 6.
On Thursday, May 9, a Cabaret Concert will feature the Senior Concert Band and Senior Stage Band.
“The atmosphere for this concert is always fun. Rather than sitting in rows of chairs, the audience will sit at tables and be served cookies and punch by candlelight,” Clark said. “The music will include some well known popular selections, but really the breadwinner will be ‘First Suite in E-Flat for Military Band,’ by renowned English composer Gustav Holst.”
“This is often recognized as the single greatest composition for concert band, and the Senior Band has done excellent work in its preparation,” he said.
On Memorial Day, which is Monday, May 27, Clark will lead musicians in the Old Forge parade in the morning, followed by the Inlet parade immediately afterward.
Webb’s high school graduation ceremony on Friday, June 21 will mark the instrumentalists’ final performance for the school year.
“It’s working really well collaborating with Mr. Clark,” Miss Goodwin said. “I know what is expected at Town of Webb. It makes the transition easier for Inlet students.”
Clark and Goodwin, who met in college, will continue to make music together. They are engaged to be married in the summer of 2014.